Thursday, December 1, 2011
From the ashes sometimes Rises the Phoenix
So many people walk around blind to the truth and brainwashed beyond reason. And far too many walk around claiming to the world how they, and only they, walk in the light, while everything they do cast a shadow across all of mankind. In questions of good and evil, they believe they serve the forces of good, while their actions and all they do sows the seeds of evil.
I walked on the....er... wild side from about 15-27. Aside from murder, theft from individuals, and violent crimes, I've pretty much done it. I was raised very middle class, Christian, and conservative. There is nothing wrong with any of these things, except that all too often it becomes a trap. People seem to start thinking it's the ONLY way, and any other way is wrong, sinful, or criminal. Not that there are not other classes, or views, that do exactly the same thing, but I can only speak to what I know.
My walk "outside" the norms I was raised into really opened my eyes to just how much more there is in the world other then the "truths" I knew and had always been taught. Even though that period of my life was a wild roller coaster ride, I've never regretted a moment of it, or the people I met or the experiences I had, even when they were unpleasant. I've seen the roughest, toughest, most tattoo'd man show the greatest kindnesses I've ever known. Or I've seen those with nothing, give all the have to help another. I've seen those who claim to hate God act more like Christ then any preacher I've ever known. And I've seen the reverse as well.
In my adventures I never harmed another person, except maybe myself at times, is some peoples opinion at least. I never saw any of it as harm, but experiences to help me grow, and expanding of my limited viewpoint. I tried anything that was different, or outside the "norm". I never shied away from any...aids.... in expanding the reality I knew, and tried everything I could get my hands on at least once. If it was a boundary, I crossed it. If it was a wall I climbed it. If it was a door, I opened it. And would do it all again without reservations. All these experiences added up to the person I became, the man I am. And I like this person I am, I'm comfortable in my own skin, and I'm proud of my traveled soul. And I owe it all to throwing away preconceived notions and finding my OWN truths, not another's truths. And the only way to find, is to look EVERYWHERE, if you don't then you haven't looked at all.
I did return more to the values and...calmness... of my early life. I settled down when Race was born, when I was 27. Now my wife says she married "boring" Justin...LOL. She sometimes wishes I still had some of that wild streak, but I'm pretty tame anymore. I sowed my wild oats, and loved every minute of it. But it took too much effort, and was far to hard to be stable while adventuring. Adventuring, and steady work, often conflict. You have to be free to live free, and things like work and money have to take a back seat to the thrill of new experiences, people, and situations. But when you have a family to provide for, the priorities change, at least for me.
I'm still as open minded as ever, and I will always have my broadened horizons. There were nights (it always seemed to be nights) of my life where after the fires died down, I emerged forever a changed person, shaped and tempered by the flames. And maybe a little singed around the edges, but all for the better. Those things changed me forever, and I am now cooled down and molded, but of soft supple steel that can bend and give, not cast of brittle and unmovable iron.
What I've learned in my travels is that there really is no good in black or white, but the world is really best when full of shades of gray. The best place to be is astride the line running down the Yin-Yang, because moving too far from the middle blinds and warps a mind and soul. Some of the greatest evils ever visited upon the earth were done in the name of "good", and some of the most evil intentions have resulted in great "goodness". But once you wander too much from the middle, nothing but pain and misery follow, if not of the one who wandered, then for others, often many others. Sometimes the whole world. All things are best in balance....all things!!!!
I'm not saying my methods would, or even should, work for everyone, or really anyone else. It was my path, and my path alone, even while I shared it awhile with others. Some of those others I've also seen changed and molded by our experiences, and mostly for the better. But it wasn't a path for the weak minded or weak souled, some people are consumed or warped by the flames. You see them sometimes, the broken, the "burned out", the corrupted. Some of the worst become the users, destroyers, the ones we think of as evil, those that have wondered far from the balance. The ones for whom violence is the only answer, or taking what should be others for themselves, the greedy, the lost. Those that climb to the top on the broken backs of others they used up and tossed aside. You see them from the back alleys of the meanest streets, to the offices of wall street, to capitol hill. The warped and lost are not by any means cast to the bottom of society, they also rise to the top..... I often wonder what that says about society as a whole???