Inspiration

So, what caused me to begin this blog thing? The thought has been in my mind for a while, but I didn’t know what I would write about or what I really had to say. It was only on Thursday night of this week that I realized that in order to discover what I might have to say I should first start trying to say something.

Last year I decided to lose some weight & get back in shape. Some friends in my video game clan were doing the same thing. Let me pause; yes I am in a video game clan, some of my best friends are people that I have yet to physically meet, if you can’t comprehend that concept I would suggest you learn how to use the internet correctly. Wow, I just responded to a perceived judgment from my imaginary readers – facebook has a lot to answer for!

Anyway, some of us started keeping a workout journal / blog on our website.  I titled mine Bentley doesn’t blog. Later I changed it to “Bentley is slowly beginning to blog” as I got more comfortable with it & started to enjoy it. I have never kept a real journal & although I’m sure it would be a good thing, especially a prayer or spiritual journal, the reality is that I am never likely to do it, at least not anytime soon.

So out of that one of my dear friends that I have yet to meet, Jason started a blog this year. He is continuing the journey to get in shape, but there is more to it than that, he like I, has an interest in being more. His journey is different to mine (obviously) but I believe the desire to be more than just stuck in the day to day thoughtless existence of 21st century American life is a shared desire.

His publically available blog sort of deweirded the situation for me. I also took inspiration from his openness & willingness to share. It is a great thing to unknowingly inspire a friend, it is also a good thing to publicly say thank you to said friend, so thank you good sir.

So if that was the initial inspiration, the kick in the rear to start doing this came unknowingly from his wife (thank you). Jason shared that Diana (it feels strange not calling them by their PSN names) instructed him to read this speech by David Foster Wallace. It is the commencement address that he gave to the graduates of Kenyon College in 2005. I was intrigued & so I read it also, late on Thursday night, and& what I found I liked a lot.

Let me digress briefly, prior to Thursday I don’t recall ever hearing the name David Foster Wallace. I am unfamiliar with liberal arts & generally I don’t read things written for the intellectually minded. I am an uneducated man, a very intelligent man but uneducated. Why do I avoid intellectual things? Sometimes it is for fear of feeling unintelligent due to a lack of education, more often though it is because such things, like many religious teachings, are simply exercises in stroking the ego of the author. Look how great I am that I can write some confusing script that may or may not have depth or meaning.  Anyway, I think I like David Foster Wallace, it saddens me that he is no longer with us, but I shall investigate his works as I go through this year. I also think I like liberal arts, open mindedness & tolerance are too lacking in this world, if that is what liberal arts are about then there should be more of it & from as many angles as possible.

So anyway, the speech, you should read it, you really should, it is not short but it is well worth it. It resonates so deeply with my recent awakening. I have spent much of my life living outside of conscious thought, not all of it(my life) but a lot of it. Recently I realized this, I believe I was told by He who tells me things, but regardless I woke up and I am trying desperately to stay awake. So now among other things there is this blog. There is also an effort to build deeper relationships than I have ever known, even those that I left behind in the country of my birth. This is not easy, it takes effort & it takes risk. A couple of weeks ago I shared my life story (testimony) with my men’s group at church, this is not something that I would have chosen to do years ago. At my present place in life though I am willing to risk what I previously perceived as a great threat of rejection in order to have the chance to really live. Ultimately that is what I want. When I pop my clogs, hopefully in another 100+ years (yes I want to set records) I’m sure they will say many nice things about me & I sincerely hope that one of them is; he really lived.

Here are 2 brief excerpts from that wonderful speech:

The only thing that’s capital-T True is that you get to decide how you’re gonna try to see it. (life).

The whole trick is keeping the truth up front in daily consciousness.

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2 thoughts on “Inspiration

  1. Diana Naomi Svolba Douglas

    Glad that the “homework” assignment I gave Jason resonated with you too! If you like David Foster Wallace’s writing style, I highly recommend his essay “A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again” about his experience going on a cruise.

    Reply
  2. cludbrook Post author

    Thank you, I was going to ask you for recommendations. I will have to give that a try, although I might wait until after my cruise in May to read that particular one :).

    Reply

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