Chinese

Chinese: (adj) relating to China or its language, culture, or people.

My daughter-in-law is from China.

She is the wife of my godson. They have two beautiful children. I don’t see them much because they live in China.

My first encounters with this dear lady were enlightening. We struck up an immediate friendship, and I was deeply impressed by her work
ethic, her respect and her honoring of those who have more age then herself.

But she is Chinese. She was raised under an absolute totalitarian form of government, which discourages people from being inventive. Now, the Chinese diplomats would probably take issue with that, but the danger of trying to make everyone the same is that they take you up on it. And once sameness has been achieved, the desire to excel, be different or discover an original path seems pointless.

In our capitalistic system, discouragement comes from a different arena. We are constantly pumped full of the helium of hope–that anyone can be wealthy and successful, while simultaneously closing doors of finance and opportunity on ideas coming from ingenious folks who weren’t born with any spoon in their mouth.

I suppose the controversy rages over which system hampers the human spirit the most. Is it more vindictive to quell creativity, or much more punishing to be creative and unable to find the means to your end?

I suppose my daughter-in-law and I could talk about this for hours. But the real issue is free will. Although many religionists and politicians would persist in trying to steal it from the human condition, God is intensely committed to free will.

So where the Spirit of God exists, there is liberty.

I have the choice to be lazy, productive, genuine, fake, kind or mean. Then I also have the responsibility to rise and fall on my choice.

It would be amazing if the Chinese people, with their great traditions and immense passion for excellence, could be unleashed with creativity and complete freedom, to choose their own path. Would they maintain the quality of their passion, or become complainers like many capitalists?

I don’t know.

True spirituality is feeling responsible without being confined, and being creative without insisting you’re entitled.

 

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Chase

Chase: (v) to pursue in order to catch or catch up with.

What am I chasing?

It’s pretty important. It not only determines the direction I’m going, but also the energy I’m expending–and to a large degree, the location of
my destination.

So what should be our profile on “the chase?”

Do we chase like cats, distracted by a simple strand of string?

Do we chase like rabbits, running hither, thither and yon, until danger frightens us back into our hole?

Do we chase like the cheetah, convinced that nothing can ever outrun us?

Life is never pleasant if, in the process of gaining what we desire, we exhaust our passion. There’s a truth. How we chase may be more important than what we chase.

I have a tendency to chase things ala turtle.

In other words, in my mind I see what I want, but because I have placed “slow down” into my mentality, I have ample opportunity to change my GPS on my way to the prize.

I’ve just never been convinced that getting there first is the best profile. Life is too fickle. People are too unpredictable. And circumstances–too changeable for me to be confident that acquiring the present shiny object is the ideal pursuit.

That’s why those who make I-phone 9 are already ready to bring out I-phone 10. They are quire sure that “the chasers” will pay more money just to prove they’ve got the new thing–and then justify it by amplifying a few subtle perks.

What am I chasing? What will make me don the boots of the quest? Not much.

I’ve never found that an up-close look at a piece of junk is any better than seeing it at a distance, and I’ve never discovered that seeking a worthless emotion feels better if you get there early.

Slow down, you move too fast.

Paul Simon said that. Paul Simon is still around. Paul Simon is still making music. Paul Simon is getting to be an old man, but he’s still pickin’–because he avoided the chase … and made “the morning last.”

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Certain

Certain: (adj) known for sure; established beyond doubt.

Punctuated by a smirk and a chin tilted to the heavens, certainty is one of the great human vices which loves to be touted as a virtue.

Matter of fact, without being certain, people become suspicious that you do not have confidence in your own code.

I can tell you, my dear friends, I am certain of this: I will try with all my heart but often fail–with the same heart. Since failure is inevitable and the only way I can truly discover how to do things better, I have gradually learned to embrace it, if not relish it.

Some people are certain they’re going to heaven, yet no one of a certainty is claiming a destination for hell.

Yes, “certain” is always something to our advantage, which fails to take into consideration the needs of others.

So I am on a mission–a vigil, if you will. As a “Knight of the Well Rounded Thought,” I am looking for evidence to disprove what I find to be certain, knowing that if my belief can withstand such scrutiny, it is well worth my passion.

 

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Celestial

Celestial: (adj) belonging or relating to heaven.

Did you ever realize that all the descriptions we have of eternal life are related to us via ancient manuscripts, from people who lived in the first century A. D.? And then we’re working under the trust that he or she actually had a vision of the supernal location.

Other writers have tried to parallel the existing insights, but we are pretty well stuck with an ancient history about our future history.

Do you find that a bit disheartening?

To me, the celestial realm is already a trifle bizarre. Since my physical body is made up of the same stuff as a bear and moose–flesh, blood, veins, arteries–it does seem a bit presumptuous to think that my wilderness friends turn into dust and I live forever.

It’s because I have a soul. Which means they don’t. Yet there is a certain amount of arrogance mingled with ignorance in the presumption of walking on streets of gold.

So where does that leave me? It certainly places me in the category of believers who yearn for a heaven someday. Yes, I have enough arrogance and ignorance to line up with those masses.

But it does give me pause to appreciate, generate and evaluate my earthly lifespan with greater tenderness and passion.

 

 

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Calamity

Calamity: (n) sudden damage; a disaster

Regeneration.

I think that’s when alligators grow their tails back if they’re chopped off.

That doesn’t happen with humans. I know we don’t have tails–but if you cut off an arm, you’re left with only one.

Yet in many ways, the human race continues to contend that “things will get better if we just leave them alone.”

We will regenerate passion.

We will regenerate the values that seem to have slipped away.

We will regenerate racial equality (which was really never here in the first place).

Some people are waiting around to grow a conscience.

Other people insist they don’t have a soul, since they’ve stuffed it back in their closet and put a whole bunch of boxes in front of it.

Calamity is easy to understand. It is usually quite explainable.

It is not walking along on a sunny day and being struck by lightning. Rather, calamity occurs when we wait for solutions instead of working with the information we have to make things better.

It is the thought that since your tires are bald, they will not become balder.

Maybe it’s the notion that your child is no worse than any of the other kids in the neighborhood, simply because he has a similar haircut–but likes to kill cats.

Calamity occurs when life has warned us sufficiently, and reluctantly renders a judgment against us.

Without it, nothing would be fair.

And those who believe they are divinely protected from the by-products of stupidity need to be warned: God is not mocked. Whatever we sow, we shall certainly reap.

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Buzzword

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Buzzword: (n) fashionable jargon

We must never grow weary in the pursuit of changing the world. Yet the process by which we try to rejuvenate needs to be carefully analyzed.

The most difficult thing to do is to revise people’s habits. You might as well just give up on that one.They are in charge of them, and still find change nearly impossible.

Likewise, you will also fail if you try to alter people’s minds.

And if you look for a revival in the soul, they will tell you immediately if they’ve already arrived at their religion, or if they’re just not fond of spirit.

Sometimes you can change the heart. This can be done by the introduction of emotion, which cleans out the valves.

But I can tell you , if you want to change the world, the most intelligent thing is to introduce good words.

Yes. Create fresh buzzwords.

In a climate where misinformation, fake news, reality TV and cultural differences are being bandied about, leaving us at constant odds with each other, just casually introducing buzzwords of energy and virtue can make a difference.

Let’s welcome back some great standards:

How about passion?

Here’s a good one: brotherhood.

One of my favorites: gentleness

And of course, there is that glorious buzzword phrase of “love your neighbor as yourself.”

Sometimes if you can get people saying the right things, they might just start feeling a spiritual awakening that makes them think about addressing bad attitudes.

 

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Bushed

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Bushed: (adj) tired out

“Be zealously affected by a good thing.”

What does it mean?

Allow ourselves to become emotionally stimulated, involved and energized by the fact that we’re pursuing something that has value.

There are two reasons:

First, it’s a lot easier to be successful when you’re excited about your pursuits.

But secondly, it quickly establishes the projects that have value and bring happiness, and those that don’t. If we decide to treat everything the same in our lives, we soon feel bushed–totally exhausted, carrying ourselves like a leaden weight from one mishap to the next.

There has to be a difference between the pleasure of going to a grocery store and buying food to eat, and cleaning the underneath of the refrigerator. If both evoke the same weary reaction, then you have accidentally turned your life into a grindstone instead of a merry-go-round.

Added onto that old adage of “being zealously affected by a good thing” should be the closing remark, “and be gloriously, deliciously tired over a sense of accomplishment.”

This is human life. This is why we are here.

Otherwise, our facial expressions and lack of passion simulate a premature death.

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