Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Endless Night

Where has the starlight gone?
Dark is the day
How can I find my way home?

Home is an empty dream
Lost to the night
Father, I feel so alone

You promised you'd be there
Whenever I needed you
Whenever I call your name
You're not anywhere

I'm trying to hold on
Just waiting to hear your voice
One word, just a word will do
To end this nightmare

When will the dawning break
Oh endless night
Sleepless I dream of the day

You promised you'd be there
Whenever I needed you
Whenever I call your name
You're not anywhere

I'm trying to hold on
Just waiting to hear your voice
One word, just a word will do
To end this nightmare

I know that the night must end
And that the sun will rise
And that the sun will rise

I know that the clouds must clear
And that the sun will rise
And that the sun will rise

I know that the night must end
And that the sun will rise
And that the sun will rise
I know that the clouds must clear
And that the sun will shine
And the the sun will shine

I know
Yes, I know
The sun will rise
Yes, I know
I know
The clouds must clear

I know that the night must end
I know that the sun will rise
And I'll hear your voice deep inside

I know that the night must end
And that the clouds must clear
The sun
The sun will rise
The sun
The sun will rise
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
This is the song that gets me through nights like this. Nights where you feel alone in your own home. All you want is for someone to show a sign that they care that you are crying, and you get nothing. Nobody, not even your family, acknowledges your sadness. It is nights like these, when I turn to Endless Nights from the Lion King. I know you have all been there at some point in your life. Your life is just a whirlwind of crazy and you just don't know where to turn. When I have nobody to turn to, I turn to music, specifically this song. This song reminds me that no matter how bad today might seem, there is always a new day to look forward to.
If you guys have never heard Endless Nights, you must listen to it. It's absolutely beautiful.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n1lSvvubI6M

I'm sorry this isn't usually what I blog about, but I was having a rough night, and thought it could possibly be useful for some of you out there to know what I do to get through my hardships.

Do any of you have a song that gets you through the day? If so, please leave it in the comments, because I would absolutely love to hear your suggestions!
Thank you so much for reading and have a wonderful day :)

Monday, February 13, 2012

My Bucket List

One of the reasons I created this blog is to document the completion of my bucket list. There are just so many things I want to see and accomplish in my life, and I would love to share my experiences with you. Maybe this will even inspire you to achieve what you never thought was possible.
My Bucket List:
1) Skydiving
2) Hot Air Balloon Ride
3) Experience an African Safari
4) Paragliding
5) Walk on a glacier in Alaska and take a helicopter to the top of Mt. Denali
6) Dog sledding
7) Travel to Australia
8) Travel to South Africa
9) Travel to Greece
10) See the 7 Wonders Of the World
11) Go to the Top of The Dubai Tower
12) Ziplining
13) Climb a volcano
14) Participate in the world's biggest water fight during Thailand's New Year festivities
15) Go camping
16) Go to Venice and ride in a gondola
17) Spontaneously walk into the airport and randomly buy a same-day ticket to wherever looks appealing
18) White Water Raft
19) Ride through one of National Geographic's 10 Best Bike Trails in the world
20) Experience Mardi Gras in New Orleans
21) Study Abroad
22) Join an Acapella group
23) Experience zero gravity
24) Get a six pack
25) Get a thousand youtube followers on my channel (http://www.youtube.com/user/wifeybrilliance?feature=mhee)
26) Get a 100 followers on this blog
27) Community Service
28) Go to the college of my dreams
29) Read at least one book a month
30) Make a difference in someone's life
31) Flashmob
32) Learn to cook
33) Take a chance

I will continue to add to this list if necessary, and I shall make a blog post whenever I get closer to completing these goals. I am determined to complete this list so I can say I have achieved what I wanted from my life and more. I know many of the items on this list may seem like only a dream, but why confine myself. I shall dream large just because I can. And you should too!

Do any of you have a bucket list? Please leave your bucket list adventures in the comments below!





Sunday, February 12, 2012

Gay Marriage

"Never be bullied in silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one's definition of your life; Define yourself."
I am in still in awe how much time people spend hating one another, when they could just accept each other's differences and actually do something productive with their lives. The hate directed towards gays, lesbians, and transgenders is absolutely cruel in my mind. Nobody has the right to restrict the entitlement to love. Nobody. 

Let me tell you a story:
My dad's cousin is gay, and has a lovely partner in his life. A few summers ago, when gay marriage was legal temporarily in California, they finally got married after so many years of waiting. To be honest, it was one of the most beautiful things I had ever seen. They may have been hated for their sexuality, but they were able to overcome the hate and continue to take the high road together. In my opinion, this takes a lot of courage. 

Why do people hate homosexuals? 
In my opinion, it is a combination of upbringing and fear. 
Some people are homophobic because they were raised to be that way. Kids learn most of what they believe to be true and right from their parents.  For example, if a parent was a drug addict, there's a higher possibility that their chid will be one too because they weren't taught any better. The same idea can be applied to prejudice, anxiety, and even desirable qualities just as kindness and generosity. If parents plant the seed of hate towards homosexuals in a child's mind, this seed will continue to grow, and homophobia will continue to spread. 
Another reason I believe people are homophobic is out of fear. "When you're scared, especially of something you actually know nothing about, hatred is a natural reaction" - Robert (avert.org) 
I think this quote explains the fear aspect of hate pretty darn well. Most people don't know a lot about the details of a homosexual relationship. All they know is what they see on television, or read about on the internet, and to be honest, the media portrayal of gays are usually girly men and manly women...Not exactly accurate. They portray gays as abnormal on television, (excluding Glee. Thank you Glee), and sadly, most people have a tendency to believe most of what the media presents. 

In my opinion, if people spent HALF the amount of time they spend protesting gay marriage as they would trying to feed the hungry, we would make extreme progress helping the people that actually need our help, and wouldn't be infringing upon another human's right to love. 

Homosexuality may not be the norm, but still, homosexuality should not define a person. It is one miniscule aspect of their being. They are still worthy of equality.  EVERYONE deserves the right to fall in love and NOBODY should have to conceal who they are to conform to social norms. 
Remember: "What is right is not always popular, and what is popular is not always right".  

If you would like to support gay marriage with me, please check out this video I made with my friend, comment, like, and subscribe. Thank you so much :)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQXdQMoS-kI&feature=plcp&context=C3863ceaUDOEgsToPDskIJ0LcaFSAbGvRKvMnYo9Fe

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Existentialism: Is Free Will an Illusion?

After reading Slaughterhouse Five, I can safely say that Vonnegut played a part in subtly affecting the way I see the world. As I high school student, I often just accepted the idea of free will, having no reason to question it. Slaughterhouse Five gave me the opportunity to dive deeper into this complex debate. For English, I had write about my opinion about this complex debate using the information I have gained from reading Slaughterhouse Five. I thought I would share it with you, because it is a truly fascinating idea to think about. Does free will truly exist, or is it just an illusion? 
Slaughterhouse Five: A Duty Dance with Reality 
       Suspend reality for a moment, and imagine that you are a prisoner of war in Germany during World War II. As you wipe the time-travelling dust from your eyes, you survey your surroundings. You find yourself encircled by a multitude of humans on the brink of death. Disembodied voices of mingling eighteenth-century Germans fill the air. They are discussing who the next victim of the gas chamber should be. That victim is you. You begin to drown yourself in misery. You think to yourself do I really have any control over this, or am I destined to die? Kurt Vonnegut, the author of Slaughterhouse Five, experienced the same internal struggle. His experiences in war influenced his opinion concerning free will. Vonnegut had no control over his fate, tethering him to his philosophy that the human perception of conscious control is only an illusion. He uses science to illustrate the fool’s paradise of free will, but while doing so, presents the character with an internal solution to cope with the limitations of one’s will. Vonnegut uses Slaughterhouse Five as a liaison to communicate his views concerning the illusion of free will. In Slaughterhouse Five, Vonnegut reveals his beliefs about the existence of free will through science. 
       In Slaughterhouse Five, understanding the universe scientifically is the ubiquitous obstacle to free will. Due to the scientific laws of time travel, past, present, and the future have already happened. Since Billy Pilgrim became “unstuck in time, he lost control of his life and couldn’t even predict what part of his life he would be living next. But this doesn’t affect the outcome because according to the Tralfamadorians, the order in which events are experienced is insignificant. An individual could never have chosen a different course of action, because his actions are already predetermined. As the narration in Slaughterhouse Five informs us, “Among the things Billy Pilgrim could not change were the past, the present, and the future” (Vonnegut 52). No matter the order in which events are experienced, an individual can never have complete control over his actions. The illusion of free will is just an epitaph to moments in the past where you wish events could have turned out differently, but as Vonnegut demonstrates, there are too many external factors out of your control to truly have free will. Another way Vonnegut presents a lack of free will is through the Tralfamadorians, who completely and conclusively remove the possibility that people can act freely. In Slaughterhouse Five, the Tralfamadorians have a philosophy that time is set out on a line. According to the aliens, humans travel along that line, but nothing they do changes the events that are predetermined. The Tralfamadorians explain this to Billy with the analogy of one of their test pilots pushing a button that destroys the world. “He always pressed it, and he always will. We always let him and we always will let him. The moment is structured that way” (Vonnegut 101). By stating, “the moment is structured that way”, Vonnegut presents the idea that everything is already written in stone. 
       However, Vonnegut finds a way for the characters to overcome the limitations of their world by looking within themselves, instead of waiting for an external solution to be presented. Initially, Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse Five appears to be a novel advocating that free will is only an illusion of the human subconscious, but upon further investigation, Slaughterhouse Five provides a solution. The way he accomplishes this to acknowledge the world is a chaotic and meaningless place. Once that has been identified, people can change to accommodate the real world, instead of some false illusion where the world is ordered and makes sense. He never says this is an easy journey though. He often presents an immutable wall of destiny that limits people’s range of free will. For Billy, this is the Battle of Dresden. As a prisoner of war, Billy’s control is revoked and he is basically a puppet for the SS to manipulate. To escape his corrupt reality, Billy invents an internal fantasy – The Tralfamadorians. The Tralfamadorians present Billy with a philosophy that absolves him from the need to try to change his reality. The helps him cope with the brutality surrounding him, because according to the Tralfamadorians, the war was inevitable. While the external forces of destiny, habit, and science restrict human free will to an extent in Vonnegut’s book, he sees hope in the possibility of an internal solution through personal means as a loophole in the restrictions. 
       Through Slaughterhouse Five, Vonnegut challenges the reader to partake in a philosophical journey by demonstrating the restriction science presents concerning the illusion of free will. Vonnegut’s personal experience as in war, humanity’s ultimate expression of brutal scientism, validates his viewpoint. As a prisoner of war, Vonnegut had to put his life in someone else’s hands, having no control over his fate. This novel may not provide a concrete answer to this extensive debate, but by reading this novel, one can absorb the idiosyncratic viewpoint of someone how has truly had his free will tested. Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse Five is a critique of the culture, cautioning to not rely on the na├»ve illusion that you control your destiny. 

Thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed it. Please comment and follow :) It would mean a lot to me.