MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “passion”

The depths of love

How do you know its real love? And that it’ll last?” Jennifer asked her godmother that question as she was putting on the veil of her wedding dress.

Her godmother smiled at her and wrapped her arms around her. “I asked that very question too on my wedding day”.

There is no single answer. It depends on the things you are willing to do for the person you love. Acts that go beyond yourself. That demonstrate you value something more than your own person”.

Jennifer looked at her godmother, her thoughts wandering.

I’ll tell you a story,” her godmother began.

There was an emerging photographer who was out on a photoshoot session one day. A beautiful young girl walked through his set at the very moment he clicked and captured her on film. He couldn’t get her image out of his mind. He was fixated on her gaze as she wondered off in a hurry. It penetrated him and remained with him so strongly he desperately needed to see her again. He searched and found her later that week in the hair salon where she worked. He conveniently forgot his cap there, so she in turn found his studio in order to return it to him. He asked her to pose for him for a few shots. She didn’t know it at the time, but he published her photos in a well-known magazine that brought him further recognition for his work.

Their encounter was brief but it changed their lives forever.

She was happy by his side. He made her laugh and she loved him for it.

She loved playing in front of his camera. And he always managed to capture the perfect pose, enclosing her beauty and charm in a single shot.

But one day, when she went into the dark room to get some film which he needed, a bottle of developing agent fell onto her head and into her eyes. She was rushed to the hospital.

He ran by her side, sweating with agony at the thought of losing her. At the thought that something might happen to her.

The doctors said her pupils were destroyed irreparably and the only way to see again was if she got an eye transplant.

Would you give up your eyes for someone else? Would you forsake ever seeing anything ever again, simply so the person you love can spend their life viewing the world? Could you feel a love so strong and profound that you would voluntarily hand over one of your main senses to someone else?

He never even thought about it. To him there was no need to discuss it either. It was a conscious decision it took just seconds to make.

In the operation room, he was lying next to her, holding her hand. His eyes wide open, his last memory was flashing before him. It was his last adrenaline-rush ride at full throttle on his cherished motorcycle before he handed over its keys to a random caretaker. He was giving up one love to save another. Tears were streaming down his face. The doctor told him to take his time. He needed to stop crying for the operation to continue.

He said he was OK. He turned around to look at her one last time. To capture her figure, her lines, her face, so that he could remember her forever. Just before the anesthetic kicked in, his gaze turned towards her, imprinting in his mind her image to last an eternity.

She woke up and saw light. After days in the darkness, the glimmers of sunrays hurt her eyes. But she could make out the people standing in front of her. Family and friends who came to wish her well.

He wasn’t among them.

She thought he had abandoned her.

She didn’t know that he had condemned himself to darkness in order to give her light.

She wasn’t aware that he loved her so much, he gave up his eyes for her. That it mattered more to him to make her happy even if it meant losing something he valued.

Can you imagine a love so great and perfect that it would mean more to you to see your partner happy regardless of if it destroyed you? That would make the other’s happiness your priority? That would erase every trace of egoism from your actions?

What if there was one person like that for each of us? And we spend our whole lives searching for them? Someone who would love us so deeply they would literally give up a part of them for our own wellbeing? Selflessly and unconditionally”.

Jennifer was fighting back the tears. She was deeply moved by her godmother’s story, which was interrupted by the sound of her godfather’s white cane sounding at the door.

She had been told he was left blind after an accident.

Only now did she realise he wasn’t the one who had suffered the accident. Her godmother was.

He gave up her eyes for her. And in doing so gave her the world.

The passion that matters

https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/mcswhispers.wordpress.com

We often waste time over things that shouldn’t matter much.

So we don’t see the important stuff.

Like that glow when people talk about things they love. When they ramble all chirpy, full of excitement and high-pitches, radiating enthusiasm.

Their excitement is enough to enthral you and like a wave wash away your problems.

Also part of Weekend Writing Prompt

The lure of a bookstore

https://s26162.pcdn.co/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/bookstore-slide-2MCD-superJumbo.jpgFor Martia, walking into a bookstore was like walking into a magic realm. In the words of Jen Campbell, “you see, bookshops are dreams built of wood and paper. They are time travel and escape and knowledge and power. They are simply put, the best of places”. In fact, she could hardly ever walk into a bookstore and not leave without buying something.

Martia’s life revolved around books. She loved reading, wrote a blog about books and worked as an editor in a publishing company. She lived and breathed books.

Yet, ironically, she could not find the words to describe how much she adored these tomes of paper. As environmentally-unfriendly they were, there was nothing like the smell that transpired when flicking the pages of a new book. Used books also held their secrets gripped within their pages. Because no one could read a book and remain the same person.

Martia had learned to appreciate even more people who read. Not on an electronic device, but the actual paper copy. Books, she said, made our minds sharper, life more exciting, they lift your spirits, lower your stress levels and make your heart more compassionate. Books always had something new to say. And there is a book on almost anything by almost anyone. What you should be careful to do is pick out the right copy – find the book that says something, in language worthy of the paper it is printed on, that makes you think and makes you want to change things.

“A bookstore is one of the only pieces of evidence we have that people are still thinking” – Jerry Seinfeld

A monk’s enlightenment

Monk-who-sold-his-Ferrari-cover CROPImagine if one of the most successful people you knew suddenly disappeared. Now imagine that months, maybe even years, later he showed up at your door completely changed. Imagine if he told you that he had sold all of his material possessions and had sought a life of passion, purpose and peace among the most enlightened monks of our time. Wouldn’t you be intrigued to listen to what he had to say?

Robin Sharma manages to grasp your attention in The Monk who sold his Ferrari: A Fable About Fulfilling Your Dreams & Reaching Your Destiny”. It is a book that makes you think, makes you re-consider certain things in life and above all inspires you to do things differently.

It makes you realise that the time to live is now, that we need to simplify our lives, to clear our minds of negative thoughts, to focus on the positive, and take risks in order to be able to truly fulfil the potential that is dormant inside of us.

Here are some of the most noteworthy quotes:

  • A person’s life can be summarised in certain key moments, which for everyone are the most important and crucial, the ones that mark their very existence.
  • Everyone has inside them reserves of life, more than we ever dreamt of.
  • Everything is created twice; first in the mind and then in reality.
  • We are the creators of our thoughts.
  • During a normal day, around 60,000 thoughts pass through the mind of an average person; 95% of these are the same ones that troubled his/her mind the previous day. Most of them are negative. Instead of focusing on all the good we enjoy in life and all the positive we can aspire to do, we cling on to things that happened in the past, trying to find justifications and reasons to explain our actions. We wither in our thoughts and hinder our mind from fulfilling its true potential of creating magic and realising all the things we dream of. Being able to properly manage your thoughts is key in managing your entire life.
  • You truly cannot afford the luxury of a negative thought – not even one.
  • When one door closes, another opens. But we often look so regretfully upon the closed door that we fail to see the one that has opened for us.
  • The quality of your life is determined by the quality of your thoughts.
  • You need to empty your mind of negative thoughts to allow the positive ones to enter. You can’t fill a glass if it is already full.
  • The images you create in your fantasy affect the very image you have of yourself.
  • You need not change your world in a day. Start off small. The thousand-mile journey begins by taking that first step. We grow great by degrees. Small daily steps lead to stunning results over time.
  • Develop a lust for learning. Read regularly. Reading for 30 minutes a day will do wonders for you. Do not read just anything. Be very selective about what you put into the garden of your mind. It must be immensely nourishing. Make it something that will improve both you and the quality of your life. Something that will inspire and elevate you.
  • It’s not what you will get out of the books that is so enriching – it is what the books will get out of you that will ultimately change your life…Books will allow you to see what is already inside of you.
  • A burning sense of passion is the most potent fuel for your dreams.
  • Failure is not having the courage to try, nothing more and nothing less.
  • Fear is nothing more than a mental monster you have created, a negative stream of consciousness.
  • The only limits on your life are the ones you set yourself.
  • All progress comes from unreasonable people, people who follow their hearts and the instructions of their consciences rather than the commands of the crowd. All progress has come from risk-takers and men and women who were willing to visit the places that scared them. Greatness arrives once you refuse to buy into what others see as impossible.
  • There are no mistakes in life; only lessons. There is no such thing as a negative experience, only opportunities to grow, learn and advance along the road of self-mastery.
  • Being able to master your time means that you are able to master your life.
  • In order to awaken your best life, it’s important that you “die while you are alive.” Most people live as if they have all the time in the world. They wish they had more time in their days and yet they waste the time they have. They put off living until some event in the future occurs. In order to awaken to your best life, every day should be lived as if it were your last day on the planet.
  • It is not enough to be busy; so are the ants. The question is what are you so busy about?
  • Never postpone the life you can live today.
     
  • We live in an age when we have forgotten what life is all about.
  • The purpose of life is a life of purpose.
  • Decide to be brilliant at what you do. And in how you live.
  • Life has bigger plans for you than you can possibly know.
  • Never forget the importance of living with unbridled exhilaration. Never neglect to see the exquisite beauty in all living things. Today, and this very moment, is a gift. Stay focused on your purpose. The Universe will take care of everything else.
  • Be patient and live with the knowledge that all you are searching for is certain to come if you prepare for it and expect it.
  • Life doesn’t always give you what you ask for, but it always gives you what you need.

 

Also part of Daily Prompt: Enlighten

Culinary art

https://tallypress.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/malaysia-top-10-cooking-classes.jpgEating is a necessity, but cooking is an art”, and like any profession, hobby or job even, no-one is born great at it, you learn by doing.

Jonathan wanted to be a chef since he saw his grandmother use a whisk to prepare his favourite cookie dough. Until his early teenage years, he never really questioned where this sublimely tasting mixture came from. But once he saw how it was prepared, he wanted to learn the secret so he could “always have abundance”. That’s the problem with us humans: we always want more.

He slowly found that cooking relaxed and calmed him. It was a mindful act that produced something worthwhile in the end, and he loved the compliments he received for the end produce.

He discovered that he could make his food as healthy, as sweet, as spicy, as exotic and as imaginative as he liked. Because in his kitchen, he was in charge. What was most exciting about it all, is that, sometimes, even food had an image, a memory, a story to associate with it. And that was one additional thing that brought people together.

Jonathan became a chef. And he realised that the secret ingredient to every recipe, just like in life, was to do whatever you did with love and passion.

The agony inside

http://www.downgraf.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Inspirational-Portrait-Photography-3.jpgThere is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you,” said Maya Angelou. We all hold a story within that we are yearning to unleash. It is the need to express our thoughts, our emotions, our dreams and our ambitions. To feel that we are supported and encouraged in every way.

We have become so used to valuing appreciation by the number of “likes” we receive on social media, by the “sympathy count” of our digital existence. But does this really matter? There are so many voices nowadays out there, that the world seems to be a cacophony of opinions – about anything and everything, no matter how important or how meaningless these are. Everyone has the right to be heard, but not many listen. So, if you are certain of the power of your own words, and by the belief that they do touch people anyway, making a difference, isn’t that more important? Isn’t that the point of it all?

The world will change, they say, one person at a time. And as James Baldwin wrote: “A country is only as good… only as strong as the people who make it up and the country turns into what the people want it to become…We made the world we’re living in and we have to make it over.

It is a great strength to feel something so deeply that it becomes a passion. And you should never underestimate the power of such an emotion. Because it takes more than passion to follow your dreams. It takes courage too. And the confidence not to underestimate your potential. You can do more than you think. And you can reach further than you see. You just have to believe it too. And feel it with all your heart.

Like Baldwin adds, the “collision between one’s image of oneself and what one actually is is always very painful and there are two things you can do about it, you can meet the collision head-on and try and become what you really are or you can retreat and try to remain what you thought you were, which is a fantasy, in which you will certainly perish”.

There are too many inspirational sayings rampant, stating that if you want something, go do it. Most are right. Don’t tell people your dreams. Show them. And certainly never underestimate the determination of a quiet person. One who keeps an untold story agonizingly locked inside.

 

Also part of Daily Prompt: Underestimate

Curvy Dancer

http://images.clipartpanda.com/dance-clipart-Clipart.gifOnce the music began, she could feel the notes diffuse into her veins and flow into her system. Her entire body was taken over by the rhythm and all she could do was surrender to the melody. Her curves began to sway and she was soon prancing about like a thick elastic band. Melissa did not care she was curvy and did not fit into the stereotypes. She loved to dance and that was all.

Melissa was introduced to dancing like most little girls, through a tutu and pointes. She was a chubby little ballerina, but was the best in her class, something most people did not anticipate. Not even her own mother who had registered Melissa for dancing classes in the first place as a form of exercise and in the hope that the curves that had taken form early on would ‘straighten’.

The curves did not disappear. But Melissa’s love for dance grew.

After ballet, she underwent a period of revolution and reaction – she entered the world of hip-hop and breakdance and stunned onlookers with the elasticity of her body.

As she matured, and felt young men’s gaze on her, Melissa turned to contemporary dance, as a way of expressing what she could not utter. She got lost in the unscripted, abstract movements that took her mind off the challenges of adulthood and for that brief time made her carefree and wispy.

As she gathered experiences and passed through heartbreaks and the trials of relationships, Melissa moved onto other forms of dance – ballroom granted her grace and elegance, while Latin gave her room for expression, sassiness and vivacity.

But it was when she got acquainted with the tango that Melissa felt complete. When she met a dancing partner, who later became one for life; when she moved her feet to the rhythm with her eyes closed, succumbing to the passion and emotions the dance awakened within her. It was then that she felt most alive. When she danced, blocking out everyone and everything else. When she took off her dancing shoes with a revived sense of optimism that everything would be OK. All she had to do was believe it and dance to the rhythm in her heart.

 

N.B. April 29 is International Dance Day – a relevant article on the benefits of dance can be found here.

 

Also part of Daily Prompt: Curve

The dangers of living on the edge

http://img09.deviantart.net/afbe/i/2012/154/f/6/living_on_the_edge_by_bendianna-d5261od.jpgIt’s not what you think. The danger of living on the edge is not that you’ll stumble and fall over. No. It’s that once you step back, everything will seem too dull.

Because, let’s face it, we all need that adrenaline rush from time to time. That feeling of excitement you get when you’re doing something you’re passionate about. Or when you’re racing against time to reach a deadline. Or even when you’re simply daydreaming about all the things you are determined to soon accomplish.

It’s a great feeling to have this constant buzz in your veins. To feel you heart pumping fast and to be happy about being so…well, “on-edge”. For some, it is a way of life. To not have time to be bored. To not even have time to consider the fact that 24 hours in a day are not enough. For others, it is just too much going on.

But for those who are used to being constantly engaged with stuff to do, with emotions, and with never-ending obligations/passions, living “on-edge” is routine.

The danger comes when you suddenly find yourself forced to step back and take a deep breath. When a cold or an illness overpowers you. When you run out of so many things to do (it does happen). Or when you simply allow yourself to lie on the coach and relax, doing absolutely nothing. Having spent days and months with little sleep and in constant motion, this is when the danger becomes more evident. It comes in the notion of boredom. Because that is what happens.

It is like when you go dancing for five nights in a row. That “happy feet syndrome” becomes part of who you are, and you are addicted to swaying as soon as music sounds. When the music stops and you have to sit down, it all seems too boring for you.

The same applies to when you are running. You run through parks, avenues, busy streets and neighborhoods; observing people, animals and noises. But when you stop, walking seems just so…dull.

It is dangerous to live a life in constant agitation. But it is equally hazardous to live one which you don’t enjoy to the fullest. The key is to find the right balance between the two. To know when to run and when to walk, when to dance and when to sit, when to stress out and when to relax.

The secret dream

http://www.mywearingideas.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/dance-shoes-4.jpgIrina had a secret dream. It was one of those things you never told anyone, but kept it flaming up inside of you. She was too afraid to express what it was because she was surrounded by realists; people who believed it was best if you had both feet on the ground and thought logically about everything. Irina wasn’t really like that, but was not bold enough to disagree.

So she grew up following all the rules – going to college, getting a degree, doing an internship for experience, accepting minimum wage for a start, gaining more responsibility the more time she stayed in the company, tolerating wage cuts that blamed the financial crisis, and carrying on with what realists believe was life – working to gain a living and if you had any free time left, you could actually live too.

But that was not enough.

It somehow never was.

Inside of her that dream was pushed aside by all the obligations and responsibilities that came with adult life.

It may have faded but it had never disappeared.

It came back out of coincidence and a mixture of boldness and stubbornness. She could not accept that she would never be able to even touch her dream. So she tried her best to change circumstances. On the spur of an impulse she made all the necessary contacts and enrollments. It was never too late, everyone said, and she believed it to be true. Because all it really takes to achieve everything you want is passion. And perhaps a little determination too.

Irina was to become a dancer. And in less than in two years, she would have grabbed hold of her dream. And it would not be a secret anymore. Only she wouldn’t need to tell anyone. She would simply show them.

Living off a passion

do-what-you-loveIt’s a great feeling being passionate. To have this incessant energy to do more, to want more, to want better. In everything. For every part of your life. The problem comes when you feel the compelling need to make a living out of this passion.

Everyone will try to convince you that doing what you love is all that matters. So you try to do that. But then you will soon come to realise that what truly matters is being able to live off what you do. So you will have to compromise. To reach for things that you didn’t think of previously, but at which you are good at no matter if they simply please you, rather than enthuse you. That is how you learn that elaborating on your passion will sometimes be restricted to something you do for you, to maintain that pure emotion of loving what it is that you do, that you are talented at, and that you enjoy.

It would be great if we could all do what we love most and get paid for it so much that we needn’t do anything else. But unfortunately, you will soon come to realise that that is not how the world works.

Many have argued for or against “finding what you love and making this your work”, but there is a distinct difference between doing something for the pleasure of it, and doing something because you must in order to get compensated for it. The notion alone clarifies the distinction.

Some have even argued that “the goal shouldn’t be to find your passion—as if it has been there, undiscovered, from the beginning—but to create one”. There is an underlying truth in that, because the reality is, whatever it is you do, you should like it even just a little bit. Because otherwise, it is no longer work, but a chore. And there is a whole other definition for that too.

So in essence, you shouldn’t give up on your passion, just don’t expect that it will be easy or entirely satisfying to make a living out of it. Because once money is involved, you always know that the commercialization of this world means that someone else also profits of you. Sometimes without them even doing anything. And then that becomes exploitation. Especially if you’re so adept on exploring the opportunities offered through your passion that you’re willing to do it for free, in the hope that once out there, someone will notice you and come calling. You just need to be careful and aware that certain distinctions in life are made to be kept. Not everything is as easy or as blissful as it seems in theory.

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