Losing the freedom of mind

Lost, gone, vanished.

Our short-attention spans attend to media manipulation.

Yet, we are the purveyors of news. We can spread a thought or opinion on the internet without the slightest veracity, a task only governments used to be able to do.

But we no longer think for ourselves. Our thoughts are almost always somebody else’s. The opposition holds the same blind bias.

A war of words froths with inevitability in the online space.

Tethered to the smartphone, we yield the liberated sense of self to the perfect selfie. We think we’re different but we’re just trying to be naked and famous like everybody else.

But our ability to woo others with pictures and words stop at the screens we share them on. We are fearful to express such individuality in the real world.

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Smacked of indecision fatigue

Without showing genuine authenticity between ourselves and others, we restrain society of original thought. Genius becomes a mere shadow of itself.

Wrote John Stuart Mill in On Liberty:

“In this age, the mere example of non-conformity, the mere refusal to bend the knee to custom, is itself a service. Precisely because the tyranny of opinion is such as to make eccentricity a reproach, it is desirable, in order to break through that tyranny, that people should be eccentric. Eccentricity has always abounded when and where strength of character has abounded; and the amount of eccentricity in a society has generally been proportional to the amount of genius, mental vigor, and moral courage which it contained. That so few now dare to be eccentric, marks the chief danger of the time.”

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Rightsizing life

The reduction of ambition rightsizes one’s life. All of a sudden, those magnetic forces, trophies, hefty pocket books, and rich attractions lose their lure. All the stylization and mimetic desire mean little. The sheep collective drown in the waterfall of white fountains. What matters is cultivating a satisfaction with fomo that becomes intrinsic. The reward…

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The visionary compass

To be interesting, we have to be interested, that is, an atypical perspective discovers atypicality in our surroundings. Different is a way of seeing. But it doesn’t come naturally, it flows through some mental defect, which, if lacking, takes some pre-programming to tilt the visionary compass. Taste is grown and groomed by shapeshifting through variegated…

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emotions

A catalog of emotions

We live with a catalog of emotions, whipsawing between highs and lows. Most of the undulation is due to poor internal weather. We are not neutral, pushed inside and outside by competing forces. One minute we’re a lover of rule-breakers with scrupulous indifference; the next, we’re just another lemming, a sheep jumping through hoops. We…

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Together as spiritual completeness

It is human desire to share. It is also human desire to compete. The two — cooperation and competition — bleed into each other to test human resolve. One excels in their particular field to consume another’s comparative advantage. As soon as those walls close down, trouble is lit. Every man for himself, absolute freedom,…

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Under the trained eye

The eye works as a paintbrush, coloring the world with a palette of vitality. Unfortunately, the constant bombardment of external stimuli torpedoes our attention, bankrupting what’s interesting. After all, the attention merchants plant eye candy and other UX wiles to captivate us and throw us into a ludic loop. But we can see our way…

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mind riot

A mind run riot

Creativity occurs when the imagination runs riot. The mind, an inherently jumpy organ, delves into its own fruitful space — probing fantastic and experiential possibilities. Truth is not the matter. Searching for what’s real and pure invention harbor the same goal: to pile up ideas. So we write a shitty rough draft or build a…

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opposites

Inseparable opposites

We’re always in the middle of fictional thinking — vacillating between what we’d like to do versus what we’re scared to do. Utopia and dystopia keep us on our toes before we filter for the truth.  We’re also paradoxical role-players — toggling between obedience and standing out depending on our internal weather. Authenticity often remains…

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The spotlight of attention

Willpower rests on the brain’s set point for pleasure. Get used to indulging doses of dopamine, and the mind goes numb to any lack of stimulation. Redirecting the spotlight of attention enforces a deliberate curb on the amygdala’s hijackings. Overriding how we feel is at the core of managing life’s compass. When we’re under control,…

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imagination

In the spell of imagination

To remain in the spell, unmoored from the compass of time and place. The inner narrative reverberates off our surroundings. We become how we see, think, and respond. The mind is always in the process of masticating the materials to prepare the imagination for lift-off. Moon shots take their shape at the precipice of unfettered…

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writing

Writing takes guts

Writing is a bitch. It takes routine, grit, and lots of induced anxiety to show up every day and put pen for paper. There’s a reason few do it: it’s depressing. But for those who do, like runners, consistency means everything. Putting words together is like jogging the brain; working on prose keeps the artist…

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Memes are a hurricane of influence

A meme is a hurricane of influence. It finds a human host, a signal booster, who spreads the meme before it takes on a life of its own. Historically, words are the simplest of memes, necessitating a language of thought. But most memes today are visual concepts manifested in viral images shared on social media.…

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The bright rush of ideas

Where do good ideas come from, and how do they form? They come from extensive research bolstered by the ability to connect the dots between knowledge and different experiences. Good ideas form through time, osmosis, long walks, boredom, and the misheard; a fruitful combination of work, rest, and fearless play. Maintaining curiosity motivates part of…

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invention of things

The invention of things

Most creativity depends on building on top of what’s already there. Novelty exploits and aggregates preexisting stems to manufacture new and different, which is all people pay attention to. However, what’s new isn’t always copy-pasta, nor is it always welcome. Most inventions and reinventions are dull and undeluded, shocking just at their orientation. No to…

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Swallowing the elements

Deliberately bad, mashed up, distorted like a Francis Bacon painting. Ugly art brings the worst of our subconscious to the fore as a means of hobbling our concentration. It goads people into fully grasping how they feel, like a good old-fashioned puke, where the vocal cords saddle up and ride a ribcage as tight as…

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