Personal finances are like people’s personal health, crucial and tragic to the sufferer but tedious to the listener.
I think more people would stay active in church, if they didn't get so offended by the actions of members. Sometimes, you have to view places of worship as free mental health clinics, in order to deal with the piety or hypocrisy. Parishioners are a wounded souls in various stages of healing, who are being treated by angels, with credentials from the University of Hard Knocks. Some take their therapy seriously and try to practice what they learned. Yet, others down the sacrament like a healing dose of Prozac, with no other effort required. When you keep this in mind, you won't feel so annoyed by the personalities you encounter.
In people’s day-to-day struggle to live, in the extreme efforts workers put forth to earn an extra ruble through moonlighting, in the collective farmers’ battle for bread and potatoes as the one and only fruit of their labor, he [Ivan Grigoryevich] could sense more than the desire to live better, to fill one’s children’s stomachs and to clothe them. In the battle for the right to make shoes, to knit sweaters, in the struggle to plant what one wished, was manifested the natural, indestructible striving toward freedom inherent in human nature. He had seen this very same struggle in the people in camp. Freedom, it seemed, was immortal on both sides of the barbed wire.” (Grossman, p. 110)
The wise do not buy into other people’s perceptions of who they are and what they are capable of. Instead, they bypass a person’s public persona and see who they are in their highest expression. When you see actions taken with integrity, instead of words only, you will then know a soul’s worth.
The personal, as everyone’s so fucking fond of saying, is political. So if some idiot politician, some power player, tries to execute policies that harm you or those you care about, take it personally. Get angry. The Machinery of Justice will not serve you here – it is slow and cold, and it is theirs, hardware and soft-. Only the little people suffer at the hands of Justice; the creatures of power slide from under it with a wink and a grin. If you want justice, you will have to claw it from them. Make it personal. Do as much damage as you can. Get your message across. That way, you stand a better chance of being taken seriously next time. Of being considered dangerous. And make no mistake about this: being taken seriously, being considered dangerous marks the difference - the only difference in their eyes - between players and little people. Players they will make deals with. Little people they liquidate. And time and again they cream your liquidation, your displacement, your torture and brutal execution with the ultimate insult that it’s just business, it’s politics, it’s the way of the world, it’s a tough life and that it’s nothing personal. Well, fuck them. Make it personal.
DPRK translates to Democratic People’s Republic of Korea—and if the words Democratic and Republic sound like a good thing, well, it’s oxymoronic because the Korea we’re talking about here is the communist one in the North, and when I said the pastor’s father was their guest, what I really meant is he was shot down, captured, tortured, and held prisoner by a depraved enemy in what today can only be described as a failed state.
It’s all about self-discipline. Like, self-obsession is connected completely with self-loathing, and it’s the same with, if you’ve got a weight problem. It’s all about… finding some worth in yourself, knowing that you’ve got the discipline to do it, and knowing that other people maybe can’t do it. And it’s also, I think, really connected to the fact that you almost feel, like, silent, you have no voice, you’re mute, there’s just no, you’ve got no option. Even if you could express yourself nobody would listen anyway. Things that go on inside you, there’s no other way to get rid of them.
[S]ometimes, when you are a food person, the possible irrelevance of what you are doing doesn’t cross your mind until it’s too late. (Once, for example, when I was just starting out in the food business, I was hired by the caper people to develop a lot of recipes using capers, and it was weeks of tossing capers into just about everything but milkshakes before I came to terms with the fact that nobody really likes capers no matter what you do with them. Some people pretend to like capers, but the truth is that any dish that tastes good with capers in it tastes even better with capers not in in.
He looks forlornly ahead of him, gazing at the road but looking at nothing in particular. The whole world is one big giant ball of light to him, and he feels like a bug inside it, waiting to be squashed. He feels like there is no sense of purpose, no direction. There is nothing waiting for him at the end of the rainbow. No pot of gold for all the pain he is feeling now, or the pain he has felt before. He just feels empty and lost, as if he is looking for something that can never be found. He feels lost that he can’t explain it to anyone and that no one will understand. He feels left out, standing alone, waiting endlessly for a ray of hope which never comes. He has suffered through this before, lurking in the shadows of his own despair, fighting for his life and losing the battle. But nothing ever makes this pain go away. Or the fear. He doesn’t fear what people fear. Not the loss of life or riches—Roman fears losing himself in this swamp called existence. He fears becoming the person he doesn’t want to become, and most of all, he fears himself. Fears his own potential to destroy and destruct. To obliterate. To suffocate his own life. He fears all that and he is afraid no one will ever know what his heart aches for, or how bad he has it. At times he feels the urge to tell this to someone, but other times he just enjoys being silent, watching on like a passerby at his own life, an observer rather than someone who’s actually living it.
...a lot of people never find the person God created them to be. They’re too busy trying to live up to other people’s expectations, or they try to create themselves in the image of a person they admire or envy. Just because we respect someone or think their life might be more exciting than ours doesn’t mean God created us to be just like them. Sometimes we have to ignore the people in our lives so we can hear the voice of God...But making a decision to put someone else first out of love isn’t the same thing as putting them first out of fear. Because you’re afraid they won’t love you if you don’t act the way they might want you to.
Alcohol does not a change a person’s fundamental value system. People’s personalities when intoxicated, even though somewhat altered, still bear some relationship to who they are when sober. When you are drunk you may behave in ways that are silly or embarrassing; you might be overly familiar or tactlessly honest, or perhaps careless or forgetful. But do you knock over little old ladies for a laugh? Probably not. Do you sexually assault the clerk at the convenience store? Unlikely. People’s conduct while intoxicated continues to be governed by their core foundation of beliefs and attitudes, even though there is some loosening of the structure. Alcohol encourages people to let loose what they have simmering below the surface.ABUSERS MAKE CONSCIOUS CHOICES EVEN WHILE INTOXICATED