Thursday, February 27, 2014

Your "Blogging Voice"

A person writing a letter
One thing I love about blogging is noticing all the different blogging styles of my fellow bloggers. I have always felt that writing is as unique to the person is their fingerprint is. I think that holds true with blogging as well. Everyone has their own "blogging voice" so-to-speak.

In my blogging circle, I correspond with bloggers who blog about everything from poetry to photography. From cooking to bird-watching. From gardening tips to life tips. And everything else in between :-)

How did you find your “blogging voice”? And what prompted you to begin blogging, if I may ask? Please share your stories. 

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Free Will vs. Determinism


"A man can surely do what he wills to do, but cannot determine what he wills." ~ Schopenhauer 
Look at the picture above for a moment. When we come to this fork in the road, do we truly "choose" with path to take? Or is it already chosen for us? That is, is our choice already predetermined unbeknownst to us?

Free will vs. determinism. This has been debated in philosophical circles for hundreds of years.  It’s always been a fascinating discussion to me. When I first took Introduction to Philosophy as an undergrad, I went back and forth on this issue hundreds of time. The majority of the class sided with the “free will” argument, as do I now. But do those of us who believe in free will believe in it due to the fact that we don’t want to cede control of our lives to outside forces?
Many feel that there is an inherent weakness in argument for determinism - that weakness being that determinism and morality cannot logically coexist....for an immoral act could not possibly be looked upon as immoral if there was an absence of "choice" to begin with. Consequently, there is a mistaken belief that "chance" (or fate) and free will are mutually exclusive. This concept is fundamentally flawed because it presupposes that the mere existence of free will renders "chance" an impossibility.
Those who argue for determinism contend that even though we may agonize over certain decisions…changing our mind from one minute to the next until we have made a choice, that there was in fact one, and only one, choice to begin with. The alternate choices that we agonized over were merely "illusions". That they were not choices at all....they were nothing more than the illusions of choice. It’s very difficult for me to bring myself to believe that. Call me na├»ve but I will always remain a strong believer in free will.  

What about you. Do you believe in free will or are you a determinist?  

Monday, February 10, 2014

Forgiving Ourselves...


“Forgiveness is beautiful and it feels good when someone gives that gift to you. But it’s one thing for someone you wronged to forgive you. It was another to forgive yourself.” ~ Kristen Ashley

Forgiveness is a very powerful thing. Forgiving someone is not only unburdening the forgiven party, but it's also unburdening yourself from those negative feelings, which can be quite toxic.

But what we sometimes seem to neglect is forgiving ourselves. Why is this so? Why are we so reluctant to forgive ourselves when we so often stress the importance of forgiving others? It took me a very long time to realize the importance of this, but when I did it changed my life in so many ways.

I think it’s important to give ourselves the same second chance that we’re so willing to give others. I think it’s equally important that we not hold ourselves to an impossibly high standard. We are fallible. We will make mistakes. Every single day. Those mistakes do not define us. But our reaction to them most certainly can.

Have you ever had problems forgiving yourself in the past? If so, did you eventually come to a point where you could forgive yourself? 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Stepping out of one's "Food Comfort Zone"

Chicago Food Photographer Fiesta Table Setting"Health food may be good for the conscience but Oreos taste a hell of a lot better" ~ Robert Redford

For most of my life, I have been very hesitant to try new foods. I had basically been of the frame of mind that a lifelong diet of pizza, Reese's Cups, Oreos, and ice cream would really be all I'd ever need. Sure, those things are lacking the necessary vitamins, but I justified that to myself by taking a men's multivitamin every day. After all, wouldn't the multivitamin offset the Oreos? I think I read something like that on the label.

Well recently, I have begun trying new and healthier foods and stepping out of my “food comfort zone.”  I must say, it's been an amazing experience thus far. I've been eating a lot of Caesar salads and such for dinner and trying things that I have never tried before. I feel so much better and I feel that I've opened myself up to a completely different world food-wise.

How about you? Do you step out of your "food comfort zone" very often?