My random meandering - stream of consciousness thoughts, ideas, and feelings

Friday, September 12, 2008

Nature Fills a Void

Since it is still fresh in my mind - I want to continue discussing my journeys last weekend - in particualr the trip to the Flowing Lava. In order the get to the lava, you have to traverse about 5 miles of hardened lava fields - essentially jagged rocks which are black and after nightfall, everything is Black - as in Pitch Black - since hawaii is island things to get darker at night and you can really see the starts - when I was living on top of Mauna Kea - the highest point in Hawaii - we literally saw more Stars than Sky. And we saw so many "Shooting Stars" - which are actually meteorites - disintegrating as they burn from the friction of the earth's atmosphere - it happens alot more than one thinks - but because of pollution, and ambient light, you can't see them.
But back to my point about the darkness - in order to make a journey over terrain like that over treacherous terrain you not only need good stamina and a good pair of shoes, you need LIGHT!! Something which my friend Viraya and i did not have - except her small cellphone which was about to die. In my experience in all the journeys I have made, those of you who know me well - I never plan or if I do plan it is always minimal, I always do things on impulse and spur of the moment and let one incident dictate the next. Very often I have not had a place to stay, and then more often than not someone offers me shelter e.g. Ian Gonazaga and Nino Avarquez in Cebu, all my frens in Manila, and now Laura, Jane and Doug Dierenfield here in Hawaii. So thus nature fills the void.

In scientific terms, it's called Le Chatelier's Principle: objects move from areas of high concentration to low concentration until a state of equilibirum is reached. Sort of like a socialist way of dealing with natural void and excess. But It's interesting how so many things can always be broken down into physics.

The case was true again last saturday hiking with just a small cellfone light across the lava fields - my first thought was to offer to buy one of the people's lights as they made their way back to their cars. But me being the shy introverted person I am, was too ashamed to ask and we continued forward stumbling the whole way. But as it has always happened in the past we met some good samaritans along the way. A couple visiting from the mainland saw us stumbling and gave us not just one but 2 flashlights and spare batteries!! - since they had hiked out during the daytime, they only needed lights one way. It's because of people like this - guardian angels - I still believe in the goodness of people - this is a messed up world with all the crime, hatred, racism, holy wars, political wars, economic wars, but I still believe that humans are inherently kind. All of us in this world are interconnected - Six Degrees of Separation they say - but something I learned from listening to Guru Joseph Campbell - is that not only are we interconnected - but even moreso interdependent!! Case in point - look at how the world rallied around south east asia for the Tsunami. Steven Covey - the author of the 7 Habits of highly effective people used to say that your area of concern should always be as large or greater than your area of influence - meaning that we should always care about more than what we can actually do.
The last thought I'll end with is another quote from the Great Dr Rob Gilbert. We have to be carefull when we speak - the vocabulary we choose - because in the end, that is all that people hear, and that is how you are perceived. In particular the words "always" and "never" Very seldom do those words hold true. No one is ever ALWAYS right all the time. And very often can you NEVER accomplish something. But the one instance where you can use the word ALWAYS is this: "Kindness always works" I never got the names of the couple who helped us that dark night, but I will forever appreciate their kindness - and I thank them wherever they are. I only hope I can pay that kindness forward. Till next time - much aloha and mahalo :)



Genesis. The Beginning - the Alpha. I've always wanted to be a "paperback writer" and now I get the chance to do so although I'm sure my audience will not be as large as I'd like it to be. As the late great Benjamin Franklin said
If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are dead and rotten

either write things worth reading, or do things worth the writing.

Hopefully this Blog will be a combination of the two. As I am right now on a journey - in Hawaii en route the Asia via my homeland of the Philippines and Singapore. Being on the road for the past 6 months one learns a lot. As with everything there is a trade off - not having the comforts of home - the stability and support of family and friends, it sometimes gets lonely from time to time. But having made so many new friends along the way - it is much easier to maintain the solitude. As Dr Gilbert has said "whenever you get depressed you should shift from an internal focus on yourself to and external focus on someone else - the best way to help yourself is to help someone else" For all of you who don't know me as well. I will be quoting Dr Rob Gilbert - sports psychology prof at Montclair State Univ. often as he has been one of the most influential people in my life.

OK back to Hawaii. Hawaii is truly a magical place. I have been to Hawaii 5 times now:

1st time in 1997 - for the Keahou half Ironman
1998 - for the Hawaii Ironman World Champ
2000 - for the labman Hawaii Live high Train Low camp
2004 - for the Honolulu triathlon + training camp
and now 2005 - for the Canadian national Training camp and HNL Tri

Each trip has had its own special moments - "we remember not the days - we remember moments" I have been really blessed to have so many special moments. Last Saturday was my first trip to the Green Sand Beach - Hawaii has 3 colours of sand: white- the most common, black - from lava rocks, and Green from a certain type of Coral. But what is most appealing about the green sand beach is the 5K hike to get to it - "the road to the top is often difficult and unpaved" P1010023 as was the 5 mile hike to the Flowing Lava sights.Big_island_pix_20051_068 Taking those long difficult hikes reminded me of the Tao - the way. Often in life we get so goal oriented - we want results so quickly - we forget the process. The road to the goal is what we need to focus on. As Benjamin Hoff said in the Tao of Pooh "in this world of microwave ovens and high speed internet - we think we can SAVE time - but you can't save time , you can only SPEND time" thus we need to choose where to spend our time - our most valuable asset. I have spent the past couple hours of my time in introspection and am now trying to communicate these thoughts. However there is always an inherent Flaw in the transmission and interpretation of language. That is why great art - transcends. Music, Poetry, painting, sculpture, even athletics - transcends the limitations of the individual - Great art happens when one realizes that "Ah Ha!" that is exactly how I feel. The purpose of life is realize ones passion, the meaning of life comes from sharing that passion. another interpretation of that is - the meaning is life is to find your gifts - the meaning of life comes from giving those gifts away.
I'm sorry I have so many quotes - but I will defend myself with yet another quote - to quote 1 person is plagiarism, to quote many is research - to quote everything is genius - and ah ha - back to the title of this entry - genius, genesis - the original creator - when we create that is when we are most God Like - whether it be physical creation - man woman -> child or mental, spiritual artistic creation that is when we manifest God in this world. with that thought I shall end this first verbose entry - til next time - thanks for reading my meandering thoughts ;)