Culture, Life, Philosophy

The Ascent

I decided to start documenting my journey of becoming a respected author, while things are still new, and I’m figuring out things. I want to be able to remember the beginning of the process, before the “likes” and popularity, so that I can remember the most important part of the journey, and share this with others.

It’s been roughly three months since I began writing every single day, with the purpose of becoming a better writer on my Instagram. I also started to read and write more so that I can have a better understanding of both the topic I wish to speak about (increasing the belief in oneself to do great things by recognizing negative patterns through self-awareness) and writing structure in general. I’m also still trying to figure out my demographic, but I think I’ll be able to narrow it down with more writing. I’ll have to give up podcasting daily so that I’ll have more time to write, and ramp up my audiobook intake.

It was also my first day at my new job today. It felt nice, and I met lots of good people. But at the end of the day, this job is just a tool for my writing and podcast. It’s important to always remember why we do what we do.

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Culture, Life, Martial Arts, Philosophy, Politics, Racism, Social Commentary, The Resistance

Float like a Butterfly

Muhammad Ali was one of the greatest athletes of our time, but his opponents extended far beyond the boxing ring. We too can be the champions of the battles we fight each day if we are adaptable and courageous.

Being a black Muslim in the 1970’s produced its own challenges in the forms of racism and Islamophobia. One of the characteristics that made Ali so remarkable was his ability to stand firm in his beliefs, regardless of who was opposing him. If you look up any video today, you’ll see ferocious confidence in his self-expression.

Being unique today requires tremendous courage to challenge the status quo. Heroes are scarce in our generation because most of us have been taught to limit our critical thinking for a paycheck; by fitting into society like a standardized cog in a machine. Ali found courage within himself and became an individual. You can also cultivate this courage for self-expression.

In nature, a butterfly is able to float because it is light, agile and curious. On the other hand, a bumble bee has similar capabilities but different mindset: workers that’ll defend the queen and hive with their sting. Humans however are not restricted to any particular pattern, because self awareness allow us to change our perspective when presented with new information.

When Muhammad Ali’s saying, “float like a butterfly, sting like a bee” was also a comment on how humans can adapt their nature. We can be light on our feet and observe like a butterfly, but change and strike with purpose like a bee. We are not restricted to nature’s patterns, but to recognize and change them requires self-awareness and that courage deep inside you. Adapt, and you will overcome anything.

Culture, Philosophy

The right team for the right job

If your goal is to build a bridge, then following the advice of a demolitions expert and buying dynamite make no sense. But most of us do this in our lives every day: we take actions opposite of our goals and end up frustrated.

Demolition experts are the negative people in your life. They’ve relentlessly practiced how to locate and identify even the smallest faults and weaknesses to destroy the greatest structures. The reason negative people seldom live positive lives is because they focus on failures their entire life — so they rationalize any risks to avoid taking them. They can easily demolish the foundation of your courage with their years of practice.

On the other hand, an expert bridge builder focuses on strengths, and what materials go well together for a strong structure. His mission is to connect people, and this goal far outweighs any short-term fear of failure. His team and tools are also much different than a demolition expert: one carries dynamite and a wrecking ball machine, and the other employs construction workers and engineers.

Depending on what we are trying to accomplish, we need the right team. Whether you’re trying to build bridges or destroy them, you’ll be able to achieve your goal more efficiently with a team on the same mission as you.

Life, Philosophy, The Resistance

Car batteries can die, but your soul just needs a recharge.

[Today’s podcast episode is about how to create a positive future. You can check it out here.]

Today’s post is inspired by a wonderful soul named Drew.

My car battery died today, and I lost my wallet a few days ago. There was no way to call roadside assistance, nor pay for a new battery. In addition, most of my friends and family were busy (since it was a weekday), and to top it off, I didn’t have any jumper cables. As you can imagine, this could’ve been a very negative day.

However, I’m a student of self-awareness; self-awareness is the only aspect of our lives that we have 100% control over. I started to break my old thought patterns, and focused on the positive. My car broke down, but at home. I don’t have a wallet, but I have checks. And who knows, maybe I’ll meet a person who will inspire, and be inspired.

And sure enough, that’s EXACTLY what happened.

Now, you probably want to know what happened, but it’d be very difficult for me to explain the series of events in the following hour; mostly because I really don’t have a logical explanation. The universe was just moving.

But what I can do is something that is probably more important:  to take some energy from that moment, and share it with you my friend. This energy includes hope, gratitude and positivity; that no matter what you’re enduring in life now, if you choose to keep believing in yourself and keep working, the future is bright my friend. Your victories are for you, and you alone. Bring the sunglasses, and let today be a snapshot to remember when you look back tomorrow.

Philosophy, Science

And Then, There Were Eight.

Pluto is interesting: a former planet, now classified as a dwarf-planet or celestial snowball.  But, does it really matter what we call Pluto? The name itself has no effect on the nature of Pluto itself; it will continue to be what it is.

Pluto is different. But it doesn’t have to be aware of what the other planets are doing, nor does it study what makes the others so similar. It is uniquely its own mass, and contained within its own orbit.

It’s unique by being simply itself. As are you.