The Tragedy of Us Humans: We Are Tempted to Take It Personally And We Keep Searching For Truth and Meaning

One thing has not changed for me during more than thirty years. I still experience the Sundays as ‘boring’. When I was a child I was obliged to go to church. I felt relieved when we again entered our home after the hours of sitting, singing and listening. And while my parents were drinking coffee I ‘dived’ and ‘hided’ in a book. It was the only place – besides the toilet and my bed – where I encountered my own private space.  

How I loved it. Just ‘me’ who ‘owned’ for myself alone that specific place in space and time. I felt at rest and I enjoyed that I was the only one knowing this secret place. For hours I was exploring the universe of my imagination.  

An empty feeling day

Nowadays I don’t go anymore to church at Sunday. And that creates a ‘problem’. I am confronted with an empty feeling day. What can I do? The structure of the week is fading away. I don’t have to bring my kid to school, I don’t have to  search for a paid job and I don’t have to do the household or to go to sports.  

My mind is going in alarm mode

And because there is not much to do, I feel bored. And at that moment I am confronted with my mind which is going in an alarm mode. It is sending me heavy feeling words about the meaning of my life. It is offering me conclusions which I don’t want to embrace. It is asking me why I don’t seem to be happy, while my basic needs are already fullfilled.  

And in those moments of ‘boredom’ my imagination starts also to work. I see myself saving other fellow humans. And I am wondering how I can escape the shooting of gunmen when they are coming from various directions in a very small street.  

And than I feel again the deep longing to attribute my piece to the history and progress of us humans. And I sense that I am after all that years still searching for my ‘position’ in this world. What can I do? Why am I here at earth?

Is there anything left that I can fullfil in this small amount of lifetime after the billions of unknown humans who have already done their ‘task’ in so many centuries and have passed away. God knows where they are and whether they are still somewhere …

The beauty and intelligence of animals

Somehow my mind don’t want to accept that we are just like the animals. And why is my mindset protesting against that? There should be no reason for that. Because look to the animals. How beautiful they are! How intelligent! They are really smart! The only ‘problem’ is that we are not knowing them, not understanding their ‘voices’. That’s why we are indifferent about their fate and that’s why we are mistreating them.  Even that don’t change that they are very ‘unique’ in their sort and varity. They even have feelings, a memory and an awareness of themselves! Wow! 

We as humans are also replaceable

So why should we as humans be separated from the animals? Why should we even imagine that we are ‘more’ than them? That we are even the top of everything that is alive? Is that not just an arrogant expression of our ego? Or don’t we want to accept that we as humans are also replaceable like the ants which I was dashing under my feet when I was a kid? It was a ‘massacre’ … Our garden showed at grassroots level a ‘killing field’. 

I have never seen a human who was mourning about the death of an ant. Also I have never heard about someone who was paying tributes after a fly was smashed with a swatter.

So the strange thing is that we are not searching for meaning when an animal is killed, but when a related human is dying it seems that our brains are yelling and commanding us to find the meaning of it.

Receiving the things which belong to us

I have also discovered that my mind is searching for reason when I am receiving thoughts like ‘Why is this happening to me?’ or ‘Why did I experience that?’ Somewhere in my subconsciousness there is a belief that I am receiving the ‘things’ which are ‘belonging’ to me. Whether it are ‘blessings’ or …  

But the question is why should there be a meaning? Why should there be a belonging or why should I be the ‘possessor’ of other beings or things? And why should I take the events in my life personally?

For instance when something is going otherwise than I expected there can be suddenly the thought: ‘Oh, no, what will befall me more today?’

That while it was only one incident and while it is nothing predicting about how ‘good’ or ‘bad’ my whole day will be. It is the same like how rain showers can lead to the statement that the weather is ‘bad’. The abundance of water can even cause a feeling of depression.

So the temptation is to generalize and to create big (meaningful?) conclusions which are based on little and small accidents. And the ‘stupid’ thing is that there is no correlation at all between the incident and myself or between me and ‘my’ day.

Again I am tricked by my mind which is deliberately searching for answers, for meaning and for ‘truth’.

Torturing questions

The same thing seems to happen with regard to the ‘great’ dramas that take place during our lifetimes. For instance when humans are daily raped and killed. Or when there is again somebody somewhere sexual abused. And many times the victims are tortured by questions like: ‘Why me?’ Or ‘how could I have prevented it from happening to me?’

Or when they are blaming themselves for how the shocking events occured, without them having the possibility to stop these. Or when there are the feelings of guilt, shame, anger and despair.  

But even than there is no correlation between the ‘victim’ and the horror which happened. Because when the perpetrator was really ‘knowing’ – his own, your and mine worthfullness and dignity – he would never have done it.  

So  every act – whatever it is – is showing something in the outside world about the inner thoughts and feelings of the person which was doing it. There is no reason or meaning why someone was receiving the anger, the aggression or the violence from another person.  

Even when I was going to church I did not truly believe in ‘punishment’. I could never believe that God was killing his own ‘son’ as a punishment for our ‘sins’ (transgressions).  But nowadays, writing this blog, I am far more understanding why Jesus was shouting: ‘Father, forgive them! They are not knowing what they are doing’.

Six millions murdered Jews and others

Many times there seems to be no reason at all.

Why were six millions of Jews murdered in the concentration camps? And all the other persons at the other places in that times?

And why got some humans after the war the label ‘hero’ and others that of the ‘traitor’? Can you see how our minds are making differences by creating opposites? Can you catch the (insecure and unstable) ego when it is creating labels like ‘winners’ / ‘losers’, ‘handsome’ / ‘ugly’, just to feel (yourself?) elevated above the rest?

Or when it is providing strong opinions – trying to secure our confidence and comfort – about how a man or a woman should behave (the issue of gender). Or how a boy should be clothed and why he should not play with the dolls of a girl? Or when we are feeling pain about how our relatives are dealing with us and we suddenly remember all that other awkward situations. Are you than aware that our minds immediately start to create the arrows which we can shoot at those who ‘offend’ us? Like the insults, the curses, the blames and the lamentations. Suddenly we seem to play hide and seek in an armory full of offensive ‘labels’ instead of a green meadow full of flowers and zooming bees.

That devil of an ego!

So we are not only separating the humans from the animals, but also the humans from the humans. Even it seems that much of the previous mentioned ‘horror’ was forthcoming out of the thoughts of dehumanizing others and blaming them for all the miserable feelings, frustrations and the worse daily living conditions. Like poverty, addictions and domestic violence. 

Of course we can tell afterwards about the hate, the shortage of self-esteem and dignity that did lead during the war to such a collective collaboration and outburst of bloodshed and killings. We can try to explain it by focussing at the ideology or the training which was given to the killers. But still there is no real meaning why gifted and intelligent humans were killing other lovely and sweet humans.

Beaches of Normandy

Also there seems to be no reason why so many young men were dying at the beaches of Normandy. We can create a story about the ‘heroic’ fight between ‘good’ and ‘evil’, but in reality there was no other choice than to leave the boats and to swim and run to the beaches. They were fearfully seeing that the sand and the sea were already red coloured from the blood of their predecessors. And while fresh bullets were flying around their ears, the heads and bodies of their ‘comrades’ were already piling up before them in the on and off going golfs of the turbulent sea. 

Why are we awakening every day?

So is there a deeper meaning why we are awakening every day? Why we are eating our food, drinking our drank and greeting each other? Is it just because we have no choice? Is it because we desperately want to survive? Is it because we know that it is more ‘wise’ to be friendly towards each other? That it is giving us ‘better’ feelings and rewards than when we are humiliating our ‘neighbours’ or living towards a new raging and devouring war?

Is it because we are loving our children and that we want to attribute to their wellbeing? And that we also desire to reach the age where we will see that they are becoming fathers and mothers themselves?

Rescued from our minds and imaginations

Maybe we are still not knowing it. Maybe there is no meaning at all. And maybe we will only in death be rescued from our minds, imaginations and the continually created interpretations, explanations and justifications. And from the idols, God(s), monsters, gnomes, giants and whatever statues of fantasy. Maybe we will find in death the rest and comfort we were chasing during our lives?

Maybe in that ‘final’ (?) day we will also be rescued from our personhoods. And from our names, stripes and mental medals. Again an illusion of our mind will than come to a peaceful end.

Probably it is the core of us that we are in essence no persons at all!

Simularities between us and millions of ants

So even while we are looking differently than other humans – do we as individuals be really that unique as we are presuming? – there could be more similarities between us and the millions of ants that are living under our paving stones.

Probably we are in essence far more equal to the ants than what our egoistic, dualistic and to differences attracted minds are liking us to believe … 

Could it be that our minds are betraying us daily by distracting us with ‘loud sounding’ thoughts and feelings? So that we stay tuned to the perspective to watch only in opposites? Like the flashes and rumours of an old black and white television?

Just to prevent us to finally apprehend it and to see with unblinded eyes … Sameness !

How I Escaped The Dictate Of Time

In the ‘old days’ I tricked myself by turning the hands of the clock ten minutes ahead. It meant that when I was in a hurry I would have ten minutes left to catch my bus or to be present at my next appointment. That relaxing realisation repressed my stress and anxiety.

Nowadays – while I have my new phone – I have stopped this practice. I guess because I love the pretense of the new technology that it is accurate. And for sure there is one thing I am loving very much. And that is to be accurate 🙂

Feeling the dictate of time

So now when I am feeling the dictate of time it is giving me feelings of stress. I get agitated and irritated. In those perilous moments I try to reassure my mind that all is still okay. I start wishful and wilful thinking like: ‘Everything is happening at the right time’ or ‘I am just at time’. But alas, my body is not always following these considerations.

Even when I am knowing that my mind is overloaded with stimuli – for instance through sudden loud noises or the accumulated questions of my relatives – and even when I am aware that time is just a mental concept (an illusion) the stress won’t listen to the demand to leave.

The surface of my lucidity

Happily I discovered that my blog about stress – I wrote it at 9 November, you can find it here: Click here – has given me in the follow-up some fresh insights. These came just to the surface of my lucidity weeks later 🙂 
I now realize that my writing of the text about stress helped me to change some of my (mental) behaviours. I detected for myself some inner grow. And I received three lessons.

Three lessons:

        • I made the decision to awake ten minutes earlier than I was used to. It means that it gives me the possibility to awake fully. Specially when I have slept very deep and when I am awaking dizzy. Also it creates the opportunity to do my activities in a slower pace and rhythm. That is helpful for me when I am feeling tired or when my mind is in a repeative control stance urging me to double check whether I have really done what I was doing. Thoughts like: ‘Did I really lock the door or did I really put off the fire of the kitchen stove?’ But sometimes I just like to do everything very slow. To train my mind to be really present in the moment. To become attentive and aware about what my hands are doing;
        • Secondly, I observed that when I am in a mental state of being thankful – thanking for having slept well in a warm house, thanking to be alive and in a good health and thanking to have food and drinks etc. – that I am less sensitive to stress. And I have experienced that when I am in such a flow it seems that time is even going slower for  my benefit;
            • Thirdly, I uncovered that it is really helping me to say aloud that I am the boss of time. It means for me to realize that time is not dictating me. It is relativizing the daily scrutiny of time. Because it is me who decides what to do at which moment. And by being aware of that I feel that I am far more free of stress and worry.

          And I believe again the long time ago obtained idea that I am arriving at the right moment at my location. And that I am meeting the right persons at the right moments.

        And even it seems to be happening that everything and everyone is helping me. And all seems to work for the good of me.

      • So sooner or later I am enjoying my relaxt and easy time travelling 🙂

 

Visiting The House And Furniture Of Anne Frank – While Her Living Look Alikes Are Still Standing Like Furniture Between The Red Curtains Some Streets Further Away

After my appointment in Amsterdam I walked through the Red Light District towards Central Station. I saw ladies from Bulgaria, Romania and Latin America. Standing behind the windows. Clothed only in their underwear. Winking and beckoning me to come and to enter their small rooms behind the red curtains. I smiled friendly and walked further.

A pale face and black hair

Suddenly I saw her while I looked over my left shoulder. There she was. A very young girl. Having a pale face and black hair. She was the opposite of the other, older ladies who were standing with brown powdered skins behind the glass. I felt shocked, because she looked like Anne Frank.

She was standing in a corner of the house. Just some streets away from the Anne Frank Museum, which is every year visited by more than one million humans from all over the world.

She was very young. Radiating fragility.

A harlot in Holland

I wondered how she came to the Netherlands. I asked myself where her family is? Who her father is? And is he knowing that his daughter is living as a harlot in Holland?

One million persons are walking every year through the neighbourhood to the Museum of Anne Frank. Probably they will visit the same day the so called ‘famous’ Red Light District.
And while they are one moment solemnly climbing the staircase to the attic where Anne Frank was hiding, next moments they are probably laughing, pointing and making pictures of the striking ladies behind the windows.
Anne Frank had some privacy, her equals are standing at high heels in the spotlights. Nearly naked. Without dignity.

What will happen when their (unwritten) diaries are found? Will there be a publisher who is interested in the stories of these girls from abroad? To read about the betrayals, the lost trust and honour, the abuses, the abductions, the violences and the rapes?

Who are the men who are paying prostitutes?

Every time when a man goes in and pays the money there is again a woman to be raped. And after this she is again raped. And again. Many times a day.
And I am asking myself: ‘Who are the men who dare to go in? Are their wifes knowing? Are their daughters aware that their fathers are having sex with some peers from Eastern Europe?’

Are that the men who are lying about the money they paid? Are they saying that they bought some petrol for their cars? And that they paid cash? And are their friends and relatives believing them?

Are they having double standards or double lives?

Or are that the men who don’t have a relation and who are ‘starving’, due to  their longing for sex, attention and maybe a hug or a touch? Or are it the men whose relations / marriages are bleeding to death, because of a shortage of intercourse? Are they having ‘blue balls’? Watching pornography? Masturbating? And …

Sexless relations and marriages?

One man told me that he was – during more than thirty years of marriage – just for five moments intimate with his wife. Just five times. That means only one moment in six years. Crazy! Shocking to hear.  And I thought that I had endured ‘drought’ – sexless periods – in my marriage!

In my ‘old’ neighbourhood lives a gigolo. He was a house painter, but left his job to earn more money by having sex with (lonely) wealthy (business-) women. My neighbour is going frequently to the gym to maintain his strong muscular body, while his girlfriend is knowing how he earns his ‘new’ money. Their little boy is still unaware.

The fate of many girls and women is not known

Every year more than 1300 vulnerable, under aged, Dutch girls are blackmailed via shared photos of their nudity. After that they are transported – again it looks like Anne Frank – to places abroad. For instance in Belgium where they have to ‘serve’ as prostitutes. The fate of many others is not known by the (watchful) authorities or the (successful) organisations which are trying to help these girls and women to escape the brothels and whorehouses.

And while these teenagers are ‘working’ long houres a day their earnings are seized away by pimps. Weekly they are robbed of thousands of euros. And their pimps walk with many banknotes in their pockets and are driving around in expensive and fast cars.

How to reduce the number of girls and women which are raped daily?

So how can we reduce the number of girls and women which are raped daily in our country? Not to speak about the other countries world wide.

Is it by focussing on the prostitutes? By trying to motivate them to leave their legalised ‘jobs’? To give them training for other work possibilities? To liberate them from the pimps? Sure!

To help them get rid of their debts? Yes, of course!

But the problem is that we are than focussing on the supply, while there is still a big demand!

Criminal networks will whatever produce or deliver as long as there is a demand. And for so long the revenues are kept high.

So to rescue some ‘drops’ is great, but new drops are already coming, while the river steadily is continuing its flow towards the sea and the expansive oceans.

The solution will be to reduce the demand. Have we ever fully investigated what the reasons are why richer men and women are raping their poorer fellows after paying money?

Of course we can focus on the criminals and we can revulse and protest against their cruel behaviours and the bloodshed of humans. Like what is happening at a daily base during many drugs wars in Latin America.

But let me be clear: All those users of drugs and paid sex are equal responsible for the horror from pimps and criminals. It is too easy to disconnect them from the ‘supply’.

Doing something about the demand for paid sex

To pay for drugs or to pay for sex means to pay for the total ‘production chain’ of bloodshed, rape and all the other hideous ‘’human’’ acts.

So the solution means that we have to do something about the demand for paid sex. Fines and sentences of courts can be tools – and these are effective – but behaviours won’t be changed out of fear (there is than no free choice or real will). Nor will these be changed when sex offenders are sent in groups to the prisons.

I believe that a multidimensional approach will be fruitful.

It will be found by monitoring the home situations of the offenders, by building caring and preventing networks around them and to give them the obligation to listen to the stories of ex prostitutes. To hear them tell about the daily rapes, the humilations and the physical and mental tortures.
And it will be found when all these persons are asked why they went to harlots. And why they did pay to have sex. And why they were seeming indifferent about the feelings of the girls and women they were abusing.

Finally, I guess that well functioning and well tuned (virtual) sex robots can be probably also a part of the various approach.

And let there than be a price tag for this technology of toys.

Because all these previous mentioned men and women showed us that they were willing to pay …

Would you like to share your impressions about this topic with me? Please Click here – To leave a comment just scroll down!

To read more about the motivations why men are paying prostitutes for having sex with them: Click here and Click here

When you need my help to escape your secretive life and to become transparant about who you are and what you do: Click here

While Embracing Our Differences – We Escape The Obscure Fictions of Our Ego – Ending The Erroneous And Ridicule Roles of Lords, Bosses, Clones and Puppets

Finally I am learning two life lessons. After stumbling so many times. And after falls. Laying upside down in the mud. And standing up. And trying again.
Now I am more understanding and experiencing these lessons in my life. Am I already arrived? Not yet, but I am happily on the way and enjoying the surroundings.

Conforming others to my imagination

For so long I was unaware that I was judging others and blaming them for not being and doing like me or like how I wanted them to be and to do. I was blind for the dark desire that others had to conform to my selfish imagination.

Also I was protecting and defending my prickled ego. While I was ‘good’, the others were ‘mistaken’. It was for me important to preserve my positive self image and my good feelings about myself. It got many times more priority than the ‘good looks’ and feelings of others. When I was younger I even tried to block the news flashes about poverty, famine and cruel, lethal diseases. I did that just to stay in ‘balance’. Because I was fearing that distress would rob me of my self manipulated views of being ‘happy’ and ‘stable’.

I have discerned how treacherous my ‘ego’ is. For instance: When I am feeling uncertain about a – by my ego viewed –  ‘strong’ person (‘strong’ means than for ‘’me’’ independent, verbal present and dominant) and when I am feeling in need for the grace of that person than my mind is creating very negative thoughts about him or her. Insinuating bad things. Painting a monstrous portrait of this person. And because I am not well knowing this man or woman my mind is producing negative scripts about the intentions and acts of that person. It is doing that to prevent ‘’me’’ of being overwhelmed by a ‘shocking’, strong presence of the other.

My ‘ego’ wants desperately to be in controll. To dominate the environment and to be the all providing, allmighty god in my own world. And by judging it makes divisions between me and the unknown, dangerous (?) other. Such large are the accusations and antipathies that these are sometimes difficult to bridge. Because the pride and arrogance of my ego tries to prevent any form of familiarity and friendship. And by paying a price of isolation and desolation it creates a very small prison for my own ego.

Judging makes others insignificant

For long I was not knowing that my judging was coming out of fear and that by judging I was making other people small, insignificant, less powerful and that I was even trying to bent them to my will.

The results of my judging were that these were reducing the space for others to be themselves. Unspoken was there ‘somewhere in the atmosphere’ the hidden imagination whereby the others had to act conform the scripts I had already invented and created for them. To be reduced to a not mighty and not anymore frightening position of a ‘non-adult’. To become a predictable clone or puppet. While my ego was crowning itself to be the only sovereign ‘adult’ in the room.

Luckily I am learning how to accept the differences of the persons around me. And that they may do the things they want to do. And that this means that it is going otherwise than I would like. And that I can’t prevent that. Even that they can do things which are painful or harmful for me.

And by really accepting others I am discovering that it is giving me also far more freedom and rest. Happily the only one I have to supervise is myself. And the only thing I have to do in regard to others is to let them just be themselves. Just let them be! It is okay that they are themselves!

Love needs distance

The second lesson I am recognizing is that love needs distance. Earlier in time I was thinking that love meant that two persons were becoming one unity or identity. It seemed for me the most beautiful thing to be accomplished. But instead I discovered that it is producing a dull and predictable relation. A partnership where you are doing the same things or trying to think the same is deadly for the long term.

Love originates out the awareness that the other is and may be different than me. And that that person is – even knowing my flaws and faults – still not leaving me. While he or she is also free to make one day that choice to let me alone with myself.

Love is becoming exciting when the other is suprising me with an act, a thought or statement which I was totally not expecting. Even when I am in that moment discovering sides and aspects of my partner which I was not knowing and which I wish were still hidden. When the other is showing me feelings and thoughts I dislike and which I want to dispute. And when the other is making me aware of my own blind spots which I afterwards would like to pretend not to see.

Embracing the differences of the other

With this knowledge it is a daring deed to embrace the other. In his or her totality. Not embracing only the parts I am liking, but the whole person. Accepting, accepting and accepting.

It is necessary to keep distance between me and the other so that I can experience the space to be myself and that I can give the other also the space to be herself or himself.

And being in a state of healthy distance to the other means also that every physical embrace becomes a successful result of our mutual choice to become together for one moment a powerhouse of vulnerability and a rainbow of promising possibilities. It shows that our different views, changing humours and ‘strange’ universes may indeed be designed to exist peacefully side by side …

When Caught in the Cage of Stress and Fear – And Time is Flying Fast Away

I catch myself on looking so many times at my phone, just to see what the time is.

Every morning there is the stress to be on time. I can feel the stress creeping in my body when I am preparing the lunch box, cooking oatmeal in a little pan and driving the car to the school.
I see it when I am looking in the driving mirror. The agitated gestures of the woman in the auto behind me. Because she is again angry that I am stopping for the walkers at a zebra crossing.

I hate the stress and hurry. The fear to arrive too late at my destination.

Assessment 

This Tuesday I had an assessment. I spent a whole day in Eindhoven. The city of high tech, football club PSV and the multinational company of Philips.
Happily I was on time. During the journey to Eindhoven I experienced at three moments traffic jams. And I saw how the precious time was flying away. And I felt the fear that I would be delayed and that there would be no time anymore to search for a free parking place in the streets of the nearby neighbourhood.

The assessment was at the fifth floor. The people of the firm were friendly. The atmosphere was relaxt. I enjoyed the whole day. Even when some of the technical stuff was very difficult for me.

There was one big but

A day later my phone rang. They told me that they had seen that I am very eager to learn, very interested, very enthusiastic and that I have a strong drive and motivation. They even got the impression that I am intelligent 🙂 . But there was one big but. They would not take the risk to hire me, because they were fearing that I am too slow processing the brand-new technical information.

Too slow! I felt the shock. The pain, the sorrow and the rollercoaster of mixed feelings. Again!


(I saw this graffiti at the concrete wall of an overpass in Eindhoven. The translation of the Dutch words is like: ‘Feed no war, but the ducks’) 

And many questions were drifting and tumbling in my mind:

Why is it not just enough to be a very enthusiastic and committed employee? Why should there be always a ‘not enough’? Why should the work be done in a very fast tempo? Why is there a focus on quantity (how much am I doing in a specific time) instead of quality (how good, beautiful or contributing is the work I am doing)?

And again I am wondering and pondering about our society of stress, hurry and underpaid, overloaded workers. Last months and just this week I was reading in the Dutch newspapers that there is an emergency call from teachers, judges and prosecutors. And of course, not to forget the nurses! They are all experiencing that there are too less co-workers, that they are making too long working houres, that they don’t have enough time to prepare there lessons, cases or the sittings of the court. And that they have too less time to pay attention to their patients. And they are all feeling worried and many times exhausted.

And I am asking myself: ‘Why are we all coping with this crazy system in our society?’

So many people are having burn outs

It is not surprising me that so many people are having burn outs, depressions, problems with their health, wrestling with addictions, having bad food habits and also that too many people are moving too less during a day. Because they are sitting whole days behind there computer screens. It is for me no surprise that there are people who are dying of heart attacks, due to stress. Stress is a killer of us humans. Stress is our enemy.

I really would like to be the opposite of this crazy system.

So yes, how does that look?

I like reflection, I like to have plenty time, even to do nothing. Just looking, thinking, being and seeing how beautiful whole nature – including us – is. To feel amazed about the beauty of the light in the autumn, to see the different colours of the trees. To observe the high blue dome and the white clouds. To hear the birds in the garden. And to drink just a cup of coffee. These things can be just enough! And can give me a feeling of freedom, space and luxury. Even a taste of adventure. And yes, even than, there is still plenty of time to work.

Singer Douwe Bob

So yes. When I was thinking about this blog, I just remembered the beautiful song of Douwe Bob.

He was the representive of the Netherlands at the Eurovision Song Contest of 2016
(Phew, 2016 already, even time is seeming stressed and in a hurry 🙂 ).

So yes. Slow down!

My dearly beloved brothers and sisters 🙂 – Slow down!

To listen to the song of Douwe Bob: Click here

History – Just a Story of Dust?

Have you ever felt the sensation of discovering a very old book? That you smelt the dust and that you had to blow away some little spiderwebs? That you realised that you and some other human hundreds years ago were holding the same book in your hands!

To feel impressed that these books, but also buildings and even trees are far older than us. To see this while walking in one of the old cities of Europe. Where the centers are very historic. Or could have been very historic. Because these centers were bombed away in World War II. Like my birth city: Rotterdam. In one hour those killing bombs destroyed the work of centuries. But even that horror happened already 78 years ago !!


(Rotterdam after the bombardment in 1940)

 

Time is like a race car

Time is – for sure now I am getting older – like a race car. When looking back, the dramatic impressions of today are fading like flat lines. And people are transformed in vague silhouettes, and mountains into small stones. Even the loud sounding, ‘all over the place’, people are changed to yearlings of quietness.

So is there some essence in history? Should we study the past? Or is that nonsense? Should our historians deserve to become themselves historic? To ‘die away’ like the dinosaurs?

When justifying their work, you can hear teachers and history scientists say that they are necessary, because we as their ‘students’ can learn ‘lessons’ from history. They seem very certain that we as humans should be informed about the wrongdoings of our ancestors. So that we should be knowing in the present what ‘good’ is and what ‘wrong’. So if that is really true it means that history is just reduced to an expression of morality.

But the question is for me: Are we humans really learning via that approach? Just looking back and saying: ‘Oops, we don’t have to do that nasty stuff’.

Probably? But I think it is otherwise. Indeed we are changing by becoming older. In physical form, but also in a maturing of our attitudes and behaviours. But still in many moments we are only changing our patterns after we have done ‘one stupid thing’ for a thousand times wrong. Sometimes we have to pay attention to the fact that we are making the same error to many times, to feel uncomfortable about it and to realise that something somewhere is not working quite at all.

It is said that the best of our inventions came after many trials and errors. Our most creative inventors were also the biggest ones in brilliant failures and mistakes.

Who writes history?

So why should we be interested in history? Is it functioning like our long term memory?

Hopely, but probably not.

Somewhere I read the true quote: ‘History is written by the conquerors’. It is assumed that Winston Churchill was the one who was speaking those words. I don’t know whether this is true or whether Churchill was just repeating the sentence of an elder person before him.

That history is written and rewritten means that the same ‘old’ stories can be exaggerated many times by just telling and changing the story. There are storytellers who are ‘reinventing’ the past just for there own aspirations of power and controll. Because they are promoting a patriotic, nationalistic tale or another expression of their identity agenda about ‘us’ versus ‘them’. About the ‘good people’ of our group and about the ‘bad persons’ who are trying to invade the beloved ‘paradise’ of our daily sorrows.

History has already a proven, ugly record of those who did manipulate history for their own ‘sakes’.

Telling a clear, consistent story

So yes, we need historians and history scientists to show what the ‘facts’ were of the past. By telling a clear, consistent story which is based at multiple sources. To confront the mendacious narratives that are misleading, blinding and binding people.

Sadly many humans are inclined to believe the stories of collusion. And to listen to the bewitching, simple ‘songs’ about the ‘black and white’, ‘good and wrong’ themes. To believe only the interpretations which are fitting in their own shape of reality. Or which are resembling their own ‘faces’ and fairy tales. Lies are accepted to fit the empty spaces in the own stories and to seal and conceal those narratives for longer times. And after a while it is even forgotten that the modern ‘truths and beliefs’ were blatant lies in the earlier days.

When the perspective of the story is suddenly changed

It was because my history teacher did not want to tell us teenagers about what happened to the jewish people in the concentration camps that I decided deep in myself to go to the library and to find it out for myself. After reading many books I knew for ever. I did read disgusting details that I won’t forget. Never! It was not pretty to get this new understanding. But finally I was knowing!

When do I like history the most?

When the perspective of the story is suddenly changed or when other, vivid details are discovered later in time which change the original story. When heroes are becoming humans, thanks to the eye witnesses who are later on daring to tell the other aspects which we were not knowing.

I most like it when my knowledge is turned upside down. This happened for me just two times, last weeks!

I read in the newspapers about a Dutch biographer who dared to study the life of SS general Rauter (who did cruel deeds during wartime in the Netherlands). But after reading these articles I don’t still know why this man choose to study the life of mister Rauter. For the Dutch readers, you can read here more: Click here

The same happened to me when I read about another controversial, historic person. This male lived in Spain during the Dutch Spanish War and he was feared by many Dutch people in that time. It was Alva, the duke of Spain and he was one of the key actors during the war which dured 80 years!

The bloody war started in 1568 and finally ended in 1648. It dured untill this time that another historian dared to make her choice to study this person, who in the Netherlands for so long was and is portrayed as a brute. For the Dutch readers you can find here more: Click here

Criticism about the choices to study Alva and Rauter

Both historians have gotten criticism about there choices to study Alva and Rauter. Their critics were saying that those two man were not at all interesting persons or that their lives were a taboo to be studied.

But I liked to read about both men. It gave me more understanding of their times. It even did give me some nuance and a little wisdom.

I did realise that even those ‘monsters’ Rauter and Alva were people like you and me. Intelligent, charismatic and having there own personal standards of ‘good’ and ‘wrong’. In their own eyes they were just doing the ‘good’ for their cause and fatherland.

So is history a story of dust? Possibly indeed about dust. Because the strong thought castles of ‘good’ and ‘wrong’ are corroding through time. After centuries the old fashioned bastions of ‘good judgements and rules’ of the past are becoming dust.

And with regard to ‘slaverny’, ‘racism’ and the ‘inequality of women’ is that after many generations really a progress, even when those old thoughts are alas still poisoning the minds of ‘some’ people world wide!

So I hope that more tragic traditions will find the ‘entry of the shredder of today and yesterday’ 🙂 .

The Essence of Life – How Dutch Readers Are Distributing Their Answers

Should there be some sense to stay alife?

After a sudden heart attack Fokke Obbema (55) found himself feverish searching for answers.

As a journalist working at ‘de Volkskrant’, one of the national newspapers of the Netherlands, he choose after his recovery to write a honest, detailed and open report about what happened to him in that nearly fatal night.

After reading his survival story, many people were reacting. Fokke received more than  500 moving emails.

Also I was at Saturday 22 September touched by his story. And also I decided to sent him an email.

Meanwhile Fokke Obbema has made a selection of the most striking reactions of his readers. And it did happen that also a short part of my story was published in de Volkskrant at 11 October (you can search for the name Nico A. Belo 🙂 You will find it).

When you are interested, you can read it in Dutch: Click here

The publication of his first account of the horrible incident, you can also find  here (also written in Dutch): Click here

What A Beautiful Day Today – Will Robots Teach Us How To Love Each Other?

I am feeling it. Today will be a beautiful day.

This day I have a conversation with ‘a friend of a friend of mine’ who is dealing with multiple problems in his life. I am very curious about how our meeting will go. Will it give us Wisdom? Applicable ‘knowledge’ for daily life?

I believe it!

I do believe that this website will give my family ‘enough income’, so that I am not anymore depending at the goodwill or the crabby moods of chiefs at the shop floor. Should it not be the ultimate time for me to be my own ‘chief’?

Why not extend this ‘mastership’ to the terrain of work and income? Is it possible that Freedom & Life will give plenty wisdom and wealth?

New Emerging Economy 
I dare to believe in a ‘new’, emerging economy where jobs and pay checks are less important. Where people are sharing their talents, creativity and ‘money’ with each other. I am so much hoping that my children will experience a time that there won’t be anymore poverty. That every child will grow up in abundance!

Base Income for Everyone
I believe in an economy where there is a base income for all people. Where every person has the choice to be lazy and to stay a whole day in bed or to chase the personally gotten dreams and visions. To risk ‘everything’ and to do the ‘impossible’ (for the benefit of the human race).

When I am seeing how far we already have come in just 500 years I am expecting so much about the times which are near. When I am reading about robots and articificial intelligence I am confronted with my own mixed feelings of hope and fear. I am so ‘hungry’ that the old patterns of doing a job for a living in difficult labour conditions will be ended. And at the other hand I am fearing that robots and ‘self thinking’ machines will overcome us in being far smarter. And why should ‘they’ than not erase us? Look what we have done to the animals, the trees and the oceans. Why should robots be more merciful than us, when ‘they’ are seeing our ‘shortcomings’, and asking rightly ‘how efficient’ we are?

Whizz-kids
But maybe there will be another outcome.
Is it possible that those machines will be the whizz-kids in the things which we as adults are messing? Is it possible that robots will give us an example? That ‘they’ wil become our teachers?
Who will learn us to ‘forget to do’ the nasty things? Like quarreling, doing violence, raping, murdering, stealing, manipulating and all the other dirty acts of us humans.

Finally Delivered from Our Egoistic Natures
Will we all together reach the beautiful day that we can really love each other ‘unconditionally’? That we will be delivered from our egoistic natures? That we have escaped finally irritation, aggression, envy and hate?

Can it be possible that robots will teach us how to love?

And will that lessons than be really a free choice? Or don’t we have than anymore a choice?

Or was the making of choices never an act of freedom? Will there come a moment that we will realise that ‘making free choices’ was an illusion of our minds?

Is it possible that we are far more robotic than we are already ‘knowing’?

Or are we still staying ‘unaware’?

 

Be invited to share your thoughts and opinions with me!

Power of Speech

For years I was wondering about the possiblity of this website. I thought many times about wisdom and my desire to help other people, specially in asking their burning questions. To escape the hush thoughts of our minds, the ‘all is going well’ expressions on our faces and to make the unspoken requests be heard.

Four Weeks
Four weeks ago I started my adventure as Splinter of Wisdom by telling a good friend about mij deep felt wish. For the first time I was hearing myself telling the vision of this site, just by words shaping it and calling it in existence. Listening to myself I felt very surprised. I thought: ‘Wow, would this really be so simple? Why am I not already doing it? Let’s just start!’

Starting Shot
And after the sound of this starting shot the words were just welling up to the surface. All these years ‘they’ had grown deep inside me. And now ‘they’ were ready to come to the surface of my soul. I was just calling ‘them’ out. And there ‘they’ were. Splashing like the bubbles of a deep well!

Wisdom Tribe
I found at internet also more about the Power of Words. With thanks to the ‘Wisdom Tribe Blog’: Click here