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2011

New Year's eve is approaching, which means that people are making their New Years' resolutions and asking me what mine are. I don't have any, and I think that's a good thing.

The problem with New Years Resolutions is that they're not motivated by a burning desire to change. Wee all know that most people don't really change, and we know how hard it is for us to change ourselves. The only fuel powerful enough to push through that pain period is the burning desire for results. New Year's resolutions don't have that burning desire. Instead we realize it's a new year, get the fluffy feeling that a fresh start is upon us, and then scramble to make up New Year's resolutions. That method of change is about as effective as the US' "war on drugs" is against drug addiction.

How motivated can you possibly be if you're willing to wait until the ball drops before taking action? Not very. I have a friend who is capable of, and has executed on many occasions, 180 degree life changes. On a normal day if he told me he was going to do something difficult, I'd have full faith in him. But he recently picked up smoking and told me he's quitting for New Year's. I bet he won't. Quitting cigarettes requires a fundamental hatred for the effects smoking has on your body and life. Anything less is a break from smoking. If he had that harsh emotion, he wouldn't be smoking today.

A- in Spirituality

On Words & threads

My senior requirement at my Catholic high school is to take a semester of world religions and a semester of spirituality. I'm currently in the spirituality semester and I've found the class simplified, but the hour I spend there each day is a nice escape and a time to reflect. We watch movies, write, discuss, and meditate. I'm not sure how anyone could dislike it.

A classmate of mine, however, cannot stand it. She protests the teacher's assignments, calls the class "stupid" and questions why she needs to have any opinion on her views of divinity or her own past. It's not that she has some strong view of atheism or is some nihilist- this is purely disinterest and she lets it be known.

Disinterest in the collective beliefs of humanity, in the origins of the universe, in your place within it, and in your connection to the forces around you- this is something my mind cannot wrap around. Since a young age, I've asked the unanswerable questions that I'll keep contemplating. I've felt connected, I've felt disconnected. I accepted the wonder of reality and the unending pursuit of knowledge and rejected the beliefs and systems that have held me back. I've learned through my own intuition. My whole life is driven by a bigger, undefinable sense of my purpose and at the same time by my own insignificance. For those who stop asking questions and have found a belief set that explains it, all the power to them. I also think pure agnosticism is great, when people really accept the impossibility of figuring anything out. Pure disinterest, however, escapes me.

How can someone toss aside these essential questions of human existence? I see people all too often that ignore these feelings, dim their understanding of reality, out of fear or out of ignorance. I've had my phases, but I always come back to this sense of childlike wonder towards the universe. I've tried my hand at being Catholic, at nondenominational Christianity, and more recently, in embracing Buddhist practices. I've been more religious than so many so-called Catholics/Christians that I know. My sister will never reach the peak of Catholicism I was at at one point, yet still looks down at me for eventually rejecting it.

How would these people's lives change if they took some time to think about things? What, exactly, is more important? This is me ranting, but its been of greater interest to me recently. I'm happy that I've checked into a broader understanding of my life, and for those a little jaded by their daily worries, I can only hope they find the curiosity to expand their mindsets eventually.

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