Tuesday, March 5. 2013
Leave all your clothes buried in the sand
Who knows when we’ll be coming back again?
Come on in, man, the water’s getting cold!
See if you sink or swim or float!
When the tide came in we tried to act surprised
What could the ocean want with the things we left behind?
Swimming back to land and I realize
It was the only time that year I felt alive
We booked a one-way going overseas,
Feels like I’m living someone else’s dream
I shed my past to keep from turning back
I’m scared it may have been my better half
I’m on the edge, about to choke…
And the story ends the same as it began
I never know when I’ll be coming around again
Starting our descent and I realize
It was the only time that year that I felt alive
Now I’m on the edge
About to choke
About to choke
About to choke
The Graduate, Choke
The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure, but from hope to hope.
Is our secret safe tonight?
And are we out of sight?
Or will our world come tumbling down?
Will they find our hiding place?
Is this our last embrace?
Or will the walls start caving in?
Muse, The Resistance
Ah, the good old days: two men, from opposite sides, bound together by a Siamese ripcord tethered to their souls. Who will pull first, knowing that it will destroy them both?
The Offspring, Conspiracy of One (Liner Notes)
Man prefers to believe what he prefers to be true.
Feb 06 2012 11:09pm
Jeremy Lin (NY - PG) Add Free Agents
I try to write these blogs as though they’re chapters of a larger narrative, with thematic arcs and the like running through them. If I’m successful, you’ll get to the last one, look back at the first one, and think, “Oh. So that’s what he was getting at.”
1984’s first section concerns itself chiefly with the past: with how Winston’s world relates to ours (the one he’s lost), with whether one can ever regain what one’s lost, and with the primal, universal fear of irrelevance – of being forgotten – expressed through the science-fiction construct of total erasure. We don’t fear that governmental bodies will erase us; we fear our friends and families will.
Thus it’s not really surprising that Making Islands Where No Islands Should Go and the Nesting Doll blog function as odes to the fading past (hello, paperweight!), as celebrations of the little things we often overlook, and as evaluations of knowledge, resistance, and choice. They’re conscious reflections of the first section, remixes / reinterpretations of Orwell’s ideas processed in a new form.
Waiting to Panic is, in many ways, about those same ideas. I think, when one reads Rolle’s story, it’s important to realize just what this moment in his life signifies. This is the transition: this is where he leaves “you can be anything you want!” behind and just becomes something, just like the rest of us. By choosing, he destroys his chance to be the other things he wanted to be…and he has to hope that, in taking a sledgehammer to his possibilities, he’s sparing the right one.
It’s this mindset that Orwell captures so well: Winston opens the book and is suddenly paralyzed by the prospect of making a mark on his blank pages. The stakes are different for both men – Winston fears vaporization, Rolle fears failure/wastage – but it’s the same “lock-up” emotion. You hit the moment assuming you’ll know what to do, then realize you have no idea what to write, or no idea what is right. And you have to make the mark anyway.
Rolle’s knowledge complicates things, just as Winston’s knowledge complicates things. If Rolle’s just a thoughtless block of muscle, he never feels any sort of anxiety about his choices. If Winston’s just a Party functionary, his bones won’t register their “mute protest.”
But he does know. He must choose. Just as Rolle did. And Rolle chose “incorrectly,” either by pursuing his football career at all or by pursuing it less than singlemindedly; whatever you think of his decision, it has not resulted in success by his standards.
It’s that danger that Winston stares down throughout the first section. Do I dare disturb the universe? Do I dare live a life I want? Make this face? Write this thought? Harbor this hope? Take this chance? Forego this fear?
Winston spends the first section barreling towards a crossroads. He reaches it when he enters Charrington’s shop. That the first section ends as it does – with the purchase of something delicate and beautiful, and the near-transformation of that object into a murder weapon thanks to Winston’s unchecked fears, all of it soundtracked by the fragment of a forgotten song – merely underscores the themes Orwell’s explored for his first hundred pages.
Party members have lost the ability to trust and confide. They obsess over the faces they present to others, whether their appearance is appropriately orthodox, whether they’re proper in every word and thought. And because deviation from the established norm is dealt with brutally and swiftly - public humiliation at best, exile (erasure) at worst - they avoid deviation by memorizing all the right moves and shouting all the right words. Through it all, they stay alone – not independently, of course (ownlife being frowned upon), but in isolation.
This isn’t to say that Oceania is like the world’s worst high school. It’s to note that Orwell leaves us where his characters stand at the end of Part One: wondering whether our risks will ultimately pay off, holding our damage in our hearts and the symbol of our fragile hopes in our hands.
And that’s part of what makes Part Two so…remarkable.
1984 aims high and hits hard. It takes on questions concerning human nature, connection, loneliness, desire, courage, evil, risk, disappointment, sacrifice, perception, responsibilities, and choices. Perhaps most incredibly, it wraps those ideas into a really compelling narrative. 1984’s often praised for the uncanny way every detail and plot point eventually comes together at the end.
It’s also been criticized for being too blunt and on-the-nose. To be fair, Orwell is the kind of author who will resort to ALL CAPS when it suits his purposes. His ninth chapter in Part Two is, perhaps, guilty of being too “on-the-nose.” But that chapter is such an anomaly within the larger Winston narrative; in fact, it provides an example of how Orwell could have written his novel – just assertions and insights, jammed aggressively into every page.
The temptation to use that blunt-force urgency, to make sure his points came through loud and clear to even the least-perceptive reader, had to be overwhelming, particularly when one considers how badly Orwell’s health was failing as he tried finishing the novel. When read in that context, the novel’s not just a story: it’s one man’s race against death, a desperate bid to say everything he could before his lungs burst (which, perhaps coincidentally, is how the author ultimately went out).
That’s why I want you to appreciate Orwell’s various subtleties: because he spent some of his last days crafting this story into something better than it needed to be.
If it hasn’t already been written, someone needs to publish a paper examining 1984 from that perspective: studying the big ideas animating Parts One, Two, and Three from the perspective of a dying man.
Part One is about recognizing rules – recognizing inflexible, dogmatic boundaries – and learning to live life “correctly.” As The Graduate allude to in the song that opens this blog, Winston’s standing on the edge of those various boundaries – not only the edge of nonconformity, but the edge of the line dividing past from present, the edge where hope and fear collide. And we worry that he doesn’t have the guts; we worry that he’s going to make the wrong move; we’re terrified that he’s about to choke.
Part One, in short, is adolescence – if all the diary-writing and cafeteria meals didn’t already give it away.
Part Three is about realizing you’re doomed, that the end is coming far faster than you anticipated (even though you always knew it was coming), and about struggling to maintain your dignity and nobility in the face of those final impossible odds – the woman shielding her child, writ large across the last few chapters.
But if Part One is about surviving adolescence, and Part Three is about facing oblivion (viewers of The Fountain: the place where there is no darkness?), Part Two is about living, about rejecting a society dominated by cynicism, fear, jingoism, greed, hatred, violence, and deprivation in order to dare to enjoy what you’ve always wanted.
For a few chapters, at least, Winston allows himself some quiet moments of joy and solace. He allows himself to believe Julia, which is remarkable in and of itself. What proof does he really have that she’s not a member of the Thought Police? (Charrington’s ruse – the owner of a shop full of relics – is just as “corrupt” as anything Julia does or claims.)
That he chooses to believe her – that he chooses to let himself need her – calls attention to one of the fundamental contradictions at the heart of his character: that he’s simultaneously far more skeptical of what he experiences than anyone else he knows and desperate to completely, unreservedly believe in something.
Whether this yearning is a byproduct of his work (even as he hunts for the past, he destroys and rewrites it with such ease; how could someone like him ever trust anything?), the result of his horrible familial situation, the consequence of a life spent accepting lies and denying one’s nature, or some combination of the three, it’s at the heart of who Winston is. Yet that hopefulness is consistently tempered and checked by fear, skepticism, or doubt.
In Part Two, Winston sheds his skepticism. He trusts in Julia. He lets himself love her, in his own way.
So how are we to react to what happens to him?
Right around the time I was struggling with this blog last year, I had a fairly circular and frustratingly inconclusive discussion/debate going with one of my friends about the value of trust. We’ve each endured our share of relationship failures and the like over the years, the cumulative effects of which shaped us in different ways.
I’m of two minds when it comes to trust and skepticism. I buy into people far more easily than I buy into, say, a trend or phenomenon. (I remained decidedly skeptical of Tim Tebow, for example – something that took way more guts to say when I wrote this than now, to be sure.) My basic attitude with people is to trust until they lose my trust.
My friend disagreed, strongly. She sees trust as dangerous, and thus without value (since the people you trust are supposed to provide you with safety, the act of trust becomes a paradoxical exercise). Even if she misses out on the good stuff, the high points, the moments of joy and happiness, she’d rather keep her guard up…because while being hurt by someone you distrust just makes them a terrible person, being hurt by someone you trust makes you complicit. You let your guard down. You let yourself become a victim. And why? Because you were too weak to do things yourself; you weren’t strong enough without somebody. You felt like you needed someone. And if you’d been stronger, strong enough to avoid letting your guard down, you would have avoided getting hurt. What happens to you, in other words, is preventable: if you never trust others, they can’t take advantage of you. You’re always in control, so they can’t win.
Except Orwell argues strongly against a life spent divided against yourself, against an attitude that requires you to fear everyone else. It’s easy to look at what happens to people in the Ministry of Love and say “See? That’s what you can’t trust anyone! They shall betray you!!!”
But that’s the point! The Party behaves in an inhuman fashion. But what’s the argument against trusting humans? Julia betrays Winston, sure – after being coerced in the most dramatic way possible. So what? She wasn’t a human being anymore. When she was one, she was loyal. And the same holds true for Winston. The being that enters Room 101 may have held onto a shred of his old self, but he wasn’t a person anymore – just a body, just a shell.
If anything, Orwell’s arguing that, while you shouldn’t trust blindly, withholding that trust blindly leaves you equally damaged – leaves you like Winston, rotting alone in an alcove as you cower from the watchful glare of the telescreen, preserving a life you don’t love leading.
What is danger, after all? A change in conditions that’s unfavorable to your immediate and future prospects.
You know what’s unfavorable to your prospects? Just about everything that you do in life. Education is risky. Eating is risky. Love is risky. Work is risky. Driving is risky. Sleeping is risky. (As George Carlin pointed out, you’re never more vulnerable to your enemies than when you hit your nightly shutdown cycle.)
You know what’s unfavorable to your prospects? Time.
In the end, we all fall, and we all land somewhere.
By refusing to trust someone, you’re guaranteeing that you’ll land alone.
In Part Three, Winston fights a lonely battle against forces that wish to change and control him. In some ways, Winston is always fighting by himself; in other ways, Winston always has someone to rely on (the hope for O’Brien in Part One, his love for Julia in Part Two, and his odd conflation of the two in Part Three).
There’s always someone that Winston can at least briefly believe feels the same way he feels, someone to give him some sort of comfort. By believing in them, he can’t be alone...which is why O’Brien targets his beliefs once he’s been captured. It’s the most effective way to “break” him. If O’Brien – and, by extension, the Party – can force Winston to accept a non-reality, it wins. For Winston, defeat lies in believing (not just saying) that there are x number of fingers instead of y, or that 2 + 2 = 5.
Some readers feel frustrated with Winston, particularly with his inability to fight back against O’Brien’s perverse mind games. The prevailing wisdom seems to be that Winston knows the truth, and he should be able to hold on to what he knows while resisting his tormentors. While this view doesn’t take the amount of time that elapses for Winston into account (he spends months in Miniluv), it also exists because it seems like Winston should be able to trust his own mind – to refuse to believe he is insane while everyone keeps telling him he is.
Let’s examine Winston’s mind – and then continue by examining your own.
First of all, anyone who’s really thought about memory – say, someone reading Tennessee Williams’s The Glass Menagerie, as some of you did last year – knows that memories themselves are often distorted. If you tell a story about a remembered event over and over to a bunch of people, you remember the story…but do you really remember the event, or simply believe you know something you’ve created as a substitute?
Moreover, you can know the substance of something without necessarily knowing something. For example, human beings understand pain, but we can’t remember the sensation of it. You can’t physically remember what a paper-cut feels like – you’ll just remember it feels bad! What you remember as “pain” is an empty placeholder, one that will be replaced during another painful experience and returned as soon as that experience passes.
Winston instinctively understands that things are not the way they should be. He even has dim memories – or memories of memories, or invented memories – of a time before the Party ruled with such an iron grasp. But he has no way to prove these things are real! All of his beliefs stem from a central concept – that his thoughts and experiences are real, and that his perspective makes sense. We demand that Winston hold fast to his faith in this concept, but that’s irrational. Winston could very well be wrong! He has no physical evidence to support himself, and he's exhausted.
Let’s use the concept of pain again as our example. Winston believes pain is bad. Why? Because his mind instinctively screams that it is. His perspective is rooted in simple truths, such as “pain is bad.”
What if he’s wrong?
What if – bear with me here – pain is actually good, even something that human beings should aspire to receive, and Winston’s instincts – like a sociopath’s – are completely backwards?
The only way the sociopath can realize his instincts are wrong is if someone can convince him otherwise. That’s exactly what the Party does with Winston. It tries to reorient his thinking in a way that forces him to ignore and erase everything he thought he knew. If you’re re-educating someone, the approach makes sense. You center your entire existence around the perspective you construct – the way you think.
If you wear sunglasses your entire life, you’ll see the world colored with a certain tint. If you never wear them, you can’t really conceive of the way the world looks through them.
Now let's imagine that you were wearing sunglasses your entire life and never noticed. Everything you see is refracted through that lens, and you were never aware your lens was artificial.
Suddenly, you open your eyes to find out that they’re gone – the whole world looks brighter and harsher. You’ve never seen it this way; for all you know, something’s gone horribly wrong with your vision. You blink a few times, and nothing changes. What’s your reaction – to quickly accept the new sight as the truth, or to deny that reality, close your eyes, and open them again in hopes that your vision has “normalized”?
It’s human nature to retreat to the familiar, to initially deny information that contradicts our previously beliefs and experiences; even Plato, in his Allegory of the Cave, understood this in more ancient times.
But if I force you to stare at the new, brighter world, and if I insist you were looking at the world through sunglasses – and if I never let you test that accusation, never let you see the glasses, never give you relief – how would you react? Would you still believe that your view of the world was true...or would you begin to worry you’d gone crazy, or that you’d been wrong all along?
Put yourself in Winston’s shoes: if someone keeps telling you over and over that you’re crazy, and you receive no support or verification that anything you've thought or experienced is even remotely sane, wouldn’t it be stupid to keep believing in your own rationality?
If people keep telling you that you’re wrong, wrong, wrong – and no one supports you – do you begin to doubt yourself?
And when someone begins playing on your greatest fears, will you resist with greater strength…or will you weaken?
One of the things that gave me a lot of trouble when I first tried writing this blog was, believe it or not, Jeremy Lin. I wanted to write about him as sort of a post-script to the Myron Rolle blog, except…well, here’s what I was writing to a friend about him while everyone else was feeling excited:
I was fond of him when the Warriors picked him up, but just thought he’d be a D-Leaguer for us. It didn’t surprise me at ALL when they dropped him immediately after the season, and I actually got a little bit of schaudenfreude out of it – I still liked him, but had grown really sick of the “Jeremy Lin is our future OMGZZZ” brigade on the blogs. When the Rockets cut him too, I was like, “See? He wasn’t all that special. Just a nice story.” I figured he was destined for a ten-year career spent pingponging between the upper echelon of the D-League and the end of the bench for different NBA teams. I did not think he would ever score 20 points in a game. I didn’t even just pick him up [for the fantasy basketball league] because of those two games – I really almost picked up someone else.
And while I’m enjoying the ride just as much as anyone – my alumni watching that Knicks/Lakers game made my NewsFeed amazing, as I’m sure I indicated to you via text – I have zero long-term expectations. I fear the wheels will come off. He’s a turnover machine; he gets surprisingly few assists; when Melo and Amar’e are both playing and healthy, how often will he really be controlling the ball?; this stuff’s already going to his head, and not in a good way (going 8 for 24 – 8 for 24??? – against Minnesota is a red flag - why is Jeremy Lin taking 24 shots, let alone missing sixteen?); etc., etc. You’re fine to remain skeptical and on the sidelines, just as long as you're fine with missing out on the high parts of the ride. I missed out on the Tim Tebow highs, but that meant not having an existential crisis after the Patriots made him their personal chew toy twice in the span of five weeks. I’m willing to buy in for as long as it allows me to chase after the leader in my fantasy league. But that’s it.
Then, yes, the wheels came off. He got hurt. He’s come back, signed with the Rockets, been decent…and no one really cares anymore.
I was right. Woo-hoo.
What did I win?
The ability to not take part in Linsanity. To scoff at it instead of revel in it.
I missed out on the highs so I could skip the disappointment. I stood on the sidelines for one of the great sporting stories of my lifetime.
That, in retrospect, seems more foolish than buying in. I didn’t buy in because I figured his run wouldn’t last, that it would be temporary.
Of course it was temporary.
Should we only believe in the permanent?
How do we live in the here and now?
That’s really the thorniest question 1984 asks. It’s a hard one to answer.
We’re smart enough to know that neither extreme hedonism nor extreme deprivation is the answer. But how far away from either of those ends of the spectrum does the answer lie?
We hold out, we hold back, we buy in. We close our eyes, we open them. We blink without telling ourselves the world might be different when we open our eyes because it’s too scary to realize that’s when every change has ever happened. Someone has been blinking at the moment when every war ever started, when every volcano erupted, when every new life has entered the world…somewhere, someone closed their eyes, and opened them to a new reality.
That’s the fear, really. That our actions will not simply have unanticipated consequences, but that we won’t be able to react in the moment to them – that we won’t be able to stop our hearts from breaking or rumors from spreading or threats from approaching. And, worst of all, it will be because we let it happen. We closed our eyes. We let our guard down.
But you can’t live a hyper-vigilant life. You can’t lead an Oceanian existence.
There is a push and a pull, a tension and terror, to the ways in which we allow our hearts to process hope. For the reason we call it hope is that we know our dreams of success carry at least an equal probability of failure. If they didn’t, we wouldn’t call them hopes: we’d call them expectations, great or not.
How do we live in the here and now? Knowing that death could come for us? Without being terrible to each other?
How do we live in the here and now? Knowing that failure could lie around the corner? Without being terrible to our futures?
How do we live in the here and now? Knowing that our actions have impacts we can’t always foresee, that we leave impressions we can’t always control, that we place our hopes in things that sometimes elude our influence?
We live in the here and now by rejecting Winston’s mantra.
We are not the dead.
We are the living.
And in doing so, we must dare to live – for if 1984 teaches us nothing else, it is that the being with the greatest power to damage you is yourself.
We should not destroy our own choices, destroy our own dreams.
We should let people get close enough to hurt us because that’s the only way they’ll ever get close enough to help us.
And, perhaps, it’s best to believe before disbelieving…for in the end, we miss out on less that way.
For you’ll never know if you’ll sink or swim or float until you’re willing to take the plunge.
+ If you're in Winston's position, how would you react to O’Brien’s words? When faced with people him, do you maintain faith in yourself, in the truthfulness of your own beliefs – or do you crumble and surrender to your doubts and fears?
+ Do you feel like you are susceptible to manipulation - do you notice when it's happening, and can it be used effectively against you? Can you stand up to those who try to manipulate you?
+ Will you keep fighting the good fight if you know you have no hope of winning?
+ Do you prefer that people are more honest, less honest, or just as honest with you as you are with them? Why?
Before answering, picture this well-worn moral dilemma:
Your significant other is unfaithful, and your best friend knows. Do you want them to tell you, even if you enjoy the relationship?
Let’s say the shoe is on the other foot, and you discover that your best friend’s partner has betrayed him/her. Do you tell him/her the truth, especially if he/she enjoys the relationship? (This is not a matter of whether you would want to – it's a matter of whether you would.)
Like I said, this is a well-worn scenario, but it’s exceptionally good at highlighting the flexibility of seemingly rigid moral systems.
+ Now that you’ve finished the book, it’s easier to ask you to put yourself in an Oceanian’s shoes. Who would you rather be – an Inner Party member, an Outer Party worker, or a prole? Would you quietly rebel? Would you openly resist control? Would you conform for your own safety? Would you accept doublethink and orthodoxy? Could you bring yourself to love Big Brother? Assess yourself honestly.
+ Oceania’s society and culture are built on contradiction. This may be most clearly apparent in the way that the dominant Party tries to force everyone into the same mold, yet prevents people from making any sort of connection based on their similarities. Could you survive in this world – a world where the very concept of “friend” has been perverted beyond recognition, a place where you are simultaneously constantly monitored yet always alone? Do you need human connections and relationships to survive?
+ Must beliefs have some basis in reality in order to be important? (In other words, can a belief in something fictional still be important?)
Please try to post insightful, specific, and polished pieces. Your post should be at least three seven-sentence paragraphs long, and punctuation, grammar, and mechanics all count towards your grade. Compose your replies carefully, and always remember to build your credibility - use proof, not hypothetical statements. Write the why for every what!
As always, you are not required to respond to every question.
For this post, written feedback for at least two of your peers is required! Congratulate them, praise them, ask them questions...reach out! There’s no comment limit for this thread, so if you feel like talking to your peers, follow your instincts! Check your work to see if someone left feedback for you, and start conversations with your readers – and classmates!
As you develop as writers, your pieces should demonstrate both knowledge of writing as a craft and an awareness of how to profoundly express yourself. Practice writing not simply as students, but as creators; experiment with writing, in other words, as writers do.
Finally, please remember to nominate two of your peers for their excellent work.
The due dates for the respective components of the assignment are as follows:
+ Your main post is due to both the blog and Turnitin.com by 11:59pm on Thursday, March 7th.
+ Your feedback is due by 11:59pm on Friday, March 8th.
+ Your nominations are due by 11:59pm on Sunday, March 10th.
As always, write well, think well…and good luck.
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“No one's gonna take me alive
The time has come to make things right
You and I must fight for our rights
You and I must fight to survive”
- Knights of Cydonia, Muse
How do you face that which cannot be defeated? Do you run? Do you fight?
As a people, we must constantly fight for good; we must fight on. When the odds are stacked against us, we must fight on because we “fight not for the political future of a distant city, rather for principles whose destruction would ruin the possibility of peace and security for the peoples of earth” (Neville Chamberlain). We cannot apathetically let evil wrap its tendrils around our society, we must fight on.
We must fight on.
There have been many times in our history where the fight between good and evil was obviously in favor of evil, but good kept on fighting. In 1896, the Supreme Court ruled in Plessy vs. Fergusson that segregation was constitutional so long the facilities were “separate but equal.” The national government had condoned racism and slavery. Good had no chance at winning. However, it tried, “not for the political future… [but] rather for principles” (Neville Chamberlain). There were many slave rebellions started as an attempt to right a wrong, even though the slaves must have known that 50 slaves with axes and shovels could not overthrow a whole country. More civilized attempts came out of the populous such as Harriet Beecher Stowe’s book Uncle Tom’s Cabin. There was no hope of abolishing racism, but they kept on fighting for a better future.
Even though the cause for good looked so grave, the effort that was put in earlier snowballed into a real movement half a century later. In 1954, through the case Brown vs. Board of Education, the Supreme Court reversed the ruling in Plessy vs. Ferguson saying that separate but equal is “inherently unequal.”
The next decade was defined by the civil rights movement. The civil rights activists started off against a sheer wall of obstacles; the odds were stacked against them. The people in the Birmingham Riots had no chance at changing every American’s ideals in that one event, but they still wholeheartedly committed themselves to the cause., and it paid off. The Civil Rights Movement culminated in the Civil rights Act, a huge win for diversity.
From Plessy vs. Ferguson all the way to the Civil Rights Act, the civil rights activists were obviously the good guys and their opponents were obviously the bad guys. The start of the movement knew that they had no chance at winning, however they kept on fighting.
If the good guys are truly good and truly want to help their people, they will keep on fighting.
“If you’re going through hell, keep going.” – Winston Churchill
I honestly liked the way you tied the past history in complex format with modern literature. I was amazed on how the connections we speak of in class make us wonder and relate to past history and specific figures such as Winston Churchill. Thanx for the read bro, I really enjoyed taking the time and reading your honest opinion on this conflict.
I like how u integrated court cases and history into your writing and its really good for the first post. thanks for a great read.
I thought you were on Unit 2 William!
All jokes aside, I really like the approach you took. Even after Mr. Feraco mentioned you in class I still didn't see the connection between the questions and Brown, but upon reading your post here you used that case quite effectively. Good job!
Put Your Fist in a Square /“Now I understand,” Said the Last Man”
“I'll try to say all the right things. But get hung up on the tone” (The Future, Nada Surf)
“There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad.” (1984, George Orwell)
There were some things that only time could cure. Evil men could be destroyed, but nothing could be done with good men who were deluded.” (Childhood Ends, Arthur C. Clarke)
“Your soul is the whole world.” (Siddhartha, Hermann Hesse)
Recently, I have had this new realization of the weakness and the impermanence of people around me. It seems like just a snap, someone is taken away from my life. The end has come too soon…
Sometimes you try your best to not to think about it. But you are reminded every second of your life. Sometimes you try your best to preserve those who are with you in the present. But you are outnumbered or simply just too weak to make things happen. And sometimes you want to be heard. But people just don’t bother.
Not all the fights we are fighting are good ones. Some of them, we will never win. And some of them, we may have to fight till the end of us. But they are all worth fighting at some point.
If I have no escape, I would want to be an InnerParty member. And yes, to be honest and selfishly speaking, I would want to be the one who understand everything and yet having freedom to do certain things. As Feraco said “it is the matter of perspective.”
We are using the perspective of our society to judge Oceania’s society. In that sense, of course, Prole’s life sounds a lot better than any of the party members has. See, here is the thing; we can’t use what is right in our society to evaluate something that is totally different and has a completely different standard. It is like convincing the Chinese Communist Party to follow a democratic system. That doesn’t sound right, does it?
Similar to Beowulf’ society, Oceania has its own honor code and moral standard. We can accept that Beowulf goes around and killing other people. At the same time, we refuse to see the same thing in O’Brian or other InnerParty Member. It is Beowulf’s obligation to serve his country, to revenge, and to die alone. In the same perspective, it is O’Brian’s duty to make sure the society it at its most stable state, to eliminate anyone who would essentially disturb the security they produce, and to affirm that the history would not repeat itself. Fundamentally, Beowulf’s actions can be seen as the same ideal as O’Brian’s.
However, here is the difference.
Beowulf is motivated by something we understand – moral, nobility, pride and obligations. As for O’Brian, he is driven by this distorted morality that he believes in – seizing the power without relinquishing it.
In the stream of history, most of the dictatorships were taken down. As for the remains, we believe they will be gone sooner or later. In our mindset, totalitarianism does not last long and would never have its permanence. And now, we are come across this intimidating fact that it could happen; monarchy or oligarchy could possibly exist forever in a nation. We refuse to believe it; we are scared that if we think that something could happen that it might actually happen, fiction or not. Most people tend to put themselves in an optimistic direction though they may not see the bigger picture of the situation.
Truth to be told, it took me long time to figure out what Orwell really trying to address here. I might still lack of many perspective of his message, but for now, I see one point: we can never see our world clearly; there is always something out there that contradicts what we believe, something out there that we know the “how” but we don’t understand the “why”.
“Every little thing can lead to a big thing.”
“Fight for what I believe in even it means to break rules and being outnumbered”
Turning my head and looking back, I see myself holding on to these beliefs that I cannot give a reason why. There are no fundamental bases for my beliefs to hold a solid ground and yet I refuse to give in.
Same thing goes to Siddhartha, Jan Rodricks, Macbeth, Beowulf, Carl, and Winston. Siddhartha chases after his dream of searching the truth of the world with his entire life. Jan risks his life to go to the Overlords’ planet. Macbeth may kill his way through but he fights for what he believes in, right or wrong. Beowulf has his life dedicated to his country, his people. Carl flies his house with balloons to go to Paradise Fall to grant Ally’s wish. Winston may trade his soul in the end but he has fought with his fist tightened up.
These beliefs eventually make up who we are. They are the core of our souls. Without them, without fighting for them, we are just bodies that walking on the ground with no purpose. The goodness of us if once destroyed, it is hard for us to recover it. So please don’t lose them no matter what because you are at the edgy losing yourself, your unique existence.
They are the things worth fighting, hold on to the truth you believe in; don’t get deluded – your soul is everything.
I really liked the quotes at the beginning, and I found your example about "convincing the Chinese Communist Party to follow a democratic system" quite interesting.
Your statement that "we are just bodies that walking on the ground with no purpose" if we don't have souls was neat.
I like how there is always a tone of encouragement in your blogs.
To be honest, your blog is profound, i don't know anything about Beowulf and i only know little about Macbeth, but i somehow get what you want to say,
i have seem my blog, therefore you must understand what i will say, in fact, that blog is kind of reply for your blog and your expectation,
We are actually having some similar goal even though we choose different way to accomplished it.
nice job, i wounder why you done this so fast
I don't know how you do it, but you are able to connect the blogs with everything you have done in the class last semester too. Great Job!!!
“Fight the good fight of faith”—1 Timothy 6:12
Facts are facts written down on a sheet of paper. Christianity is a belief of the conscious mind. He is never satisfied unless there is a rival from church to church; he who causes it yet knows nothing of it. There is no certainty that you can see the flesh of devils that appear in the dark night. Only if he were to have an angel’s heart and not a broken creature, but sadly he was a corrupt man changed through society’s beliefs.
People must dig under their skin and scratch through their souls to fight the flesh. Some have the struggle with the belief anything is real. “I see a law in my members warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity.” He struggles to fight the world in everyday belief for something that you cannot see but hear. The secret wish that people believe that could be done. Not running through any extent, but justifying the foes that must be conquered throughout time. “If any man loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.”
The belief of the devil, himself “Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat.” If we wish to believe this controversy, our lives would not be saved. A strong person would never stop their heart from beating if they knew what they were getting into. No doubt that we have uninspired service who call themselves the “Churchmen”, but they are just revising the book of the bible in which could not even be real. It could mainly be a book of stories from the past. It is mainly just an overpowering voice speaking out to us because we do not know the true meaning of reality. How can we know that it is real, if it is just a belief? “Belief is a wise wager. Granted that faith cannot be proved, what harm will come to you if you gamble on its truth and it proves false? If you gain, you gain all; if you lose, you lose nothing. Wager, then, without hesitation, that He exists.” (Blaise Pascal).
I really enjoyed reading your response and love your connection, Thanx for the read!!
Long time no see!
Anyways, you've got such cool Biblical quotes for this blog, and the concluding quote was beautiful.
I like how you made a connection between Christian faith and the blog's topic.
Cool descriptions of evil.
So I had a problem understanding your post. In the first part you use he but I don't know if you're referring to a single person or just people in general. I also didn't understand and couldn't figure out which prompt you used until like the end. I think you used the prompt about beliefs and fighting the good fight.
I think it's interesting how you interpreted the good fight as something having to do with religion. Over all I liked the subject matter and thought your interpretation was interesting because I didn't consider the good fight having to do with religion I just thought it was a general phrase and could represent anything.
The only thing i didn't like about your post is one of your quotes but It's not anything you said in particular I just can't stand this quote.
"If any man loves the world, then the love of the father is not in him"
This quote is the problem I have with religion it tells me that god wants us to ignore our world and surroundings and devote everything to him. I just don't understand how or why god would put us here just to get some where else. Why would he make this place for us and then tell us to hate and reject it. I just don't under stand it and I don't like it. I don't like how people can ignore the planet and the life around them. I don't like how they can see the damage and harm they cause and then reject all responsibility because they're moving on from here. Who cares about earth when you're going to heaven. So yeah that is the problem I have.
Sorry for the rant, again I liked your post I just didn't like that quote.
To be honest I was talking about people in general, maybe I should have been more descriptive. Yes I was talking about the good fight. I'm sorry if you don't agree to this concept. Thank you anyway for expressing how you feel in your comments. I will keep that to consideration next time. (:
You are Winston.
Screams are echoing throughout the Ministry of Love. Every last remnant of humanity is drained from Room 101’s victims. It is a dog-eat-dog world here. You must betray another human being in order to survive…even though you know you will not be able to retain your life for long as you will be waiting for the bullet that is sure to come. All conscience vanishes, and you are “dead” mentally. The dismal eyes belonging to an unfamiliar horrifying hollow gaunt figure are staring at you from the mirror, and you realize that pathetic someone is you. You do not recognize yourself anymore just as you discover you are no longer able to fully trust your mind after the torments you have undergone in that terrible room. Slowly, you begin to doubt yourself. O’Brien’s forcing you to accept two plus two equals five soon becomes something that is not forced upon you; instead, you REALLY do cease to see four fingers. Everything you have hoped will go your way has suddenly turned upside down, but you had an innate feeling that this would happen all along. You did not dispose of the possibility that O’Brien is a true Party member but still took the path of entrusting your life to him.
You just did not want to accept the truth. By admitting you no longer see four fingers being held up, you were giving up one lie to pursue another. In other words, you gave up the impossible idea you were not alone in your rebellion against the Party in order to hold onto the lies the Party bestowed upon you as you believed yielding to the Party would be the best choice for you; at least you could escape the primarily physical torture…for a while. Even so, either way, you were lying to yourself. True torture is mental suffering, when you do not even have the right to speak your mind.
The truth is sometimes painful to swallow, and we often react to undesired truths by choosing to ignore them, providing ourselves with a sense of hope and disregarding all means of practicality, so that we may find joy and security in believing in our own wistful thinking. We stay in the little comfort zone reserved in our own minds where we find our “varicose ulcers” nonexistent. Akin to the way Winston decided to confide in O’Brien as gambling on trust was the only way he could possibly have a chance of escaping the tyrannical rule of Big Brother and the Party, we take risks without hesitating just to grasp on to a sliver of “a chance”. The probability of reaching a certain goal might be miniscule, but if we did not even try our best to take hold of a chance, we would certainly fail. As Mr. Feraco stated, “For you’ll never know if you’ll sink or swim or float until you’re willing to take the plunge,” it is most often “safer” to trust than to avoid taking risks. Besides, anything is possible. As mentioned in the Bible, one with enough faith will have the power to move even mountains. Even if you do not succeed, you could still ease your mind of the “what if…” and “would my life be better if I did…”
Rolle did attempt to fulfill his dream of making it to the NFL; unfortunately, due to his not having a strong enough will to pursue this goal of his life, he failed when he took a bit too much time considering his other options. Although Winston was rash in his actions, scheming to overthrow the Party without taking the time to decipher O’Brien’s true identity, he would not have to regret his futile efforts; at least he could eventually die knowing he had once been brave enough to adhere to his belief that the Party was not “all right”. Thus, we should keep fighting the good fight even if victory seems to be a very distant star.
If I had to live in Oceania, and there was no escape, I would choose to be a member of the prole class. It is not only because a majority of the class wants to fit within this caste; it is, in reality, the group that dominates Oceania. Despite the prole’s reputation as the lowest class in Oceania, it is actually virtually impossible for the Party to control or rule over the proles as the Party consists of only a few individuals in comparison to the eighty percent or so of Oceania’s citizens that encompass the prole class. I would rather have a prole’s mindset, “dumb” as a prole might be, since regardless of whether one was a member of the lowest class or the Party, one would still need to believe everything the Party and Big Brother declares as true. The benefit of being a prole is that even though a prole has no mind of his or her own (like everyone else as they are all manipulated by the Party), a prole is subject to more physical and mental freedom. Although telescreens may appear once in a while, placed somewhere in the prole quarters by the Thought Police like Mr. Charrington, the proles are, for the most part, not under constant surveillance. In fact, the proles are considered to be so insignificant and harmless to the government that they are pretty much free to do whatever they pleased within their own little disregarded society.
Singing songs the Outer Party invented, spending the rest of their lives doing whatever they desired to do so long as the Party is not disturbed, and accepting the governing system of the Party, the proles were so mindless that they were the most blessed souls in the totalitarian Oceania. Being a member of either the Inner Party or the Outer Party meant you lost your freedom and had to take on more responsibility in order to survive. Meanwhile, the proles get to enjoy life whereas Party members must control their every thought and expression as the Party considers them to be more intelligent and suppresses them, so they will not have any chance to stand against the Party. Wealth and relishes provided to the Inner Party are worthless if you must trade basically “your life” and conscience for the supposed “lavishness” (which is not lavishness at all). Your life belongs to the Party. The Party can deprive you of your life at any time, vaporizing you and sucking the elements that make you human and alive in Room 101, where you are deprived of all compassion, betraying those who have once been your loved ones. Even if you did not commit any crime in particular like the productive Syme, a Newspeak expert who was just trying to do his job for the Party’s sake, the Party can blow the light out of a person just because that person seems just a bit too smart or…just because it feels like doing so.
By trusting others, you must depend on others just as the proles trust the Party without seeking their own minds for any objections. Is this a good thing? Sure, the proles are safe from harm, but beliefs, no matter how unpopular in society, must be kept as a person is defined by one’s belief. Although Winston’s believing the Party was wrong led to his ultimate downfall, his bravery in standing up for his own views displayed him as a unique individual, a delicate raindrop, in comparison to the bunch of ordinary gullible proles, heavy rain.
In my opinion, being a prole just means being satisfied with your life, and no matter how ridiculous a prole’s lifestyle seems, is it not everyone’s dream to have a satisfactory life with what little time we have got here on earth?
Victoria, I really enjoyed reading what you had to say. Your writing was really smooth. I felt like I was at the Ministry of Love. You made a really good argument for being a prole. They have simple lives and simple existences. It is true that we have such little time on this planet. But would you want to live to only half of your potential? What if you could do more with your life? What if you can be more than a prole? There is more to life than simply being satisfied.
Very nice job!
Thank you for your comments. I really enjoyed reading your blog also.
Sure, I'd want to be something more than a prole, but the only other two choices are Inner Party and Outer Party member (even more unsatisfactory in my opinion).
I absolutely love this blog post. Your writing is so well composed and it is also very creative. I was immediately absorbed by your first paragraph. I enjoyed every little details you incorporate into your argument, which made the post even more enjoyable to read. I saw some similarities in your blog with mine, but I just enjoyed yours so much more, because you wrote it in such an eloquent manner. Keep up the good work!
Thank you for reading my blog.
I also enjoyed reading yours and found myself agreeing with your statement that "without a tint of honesty, we will stop communicating with each other and the bond between people will slowly disintegrate."
Your blog also had very nice details (love the first paragraph).
i see why you answer my blog,
your blog is indeed very long,
i gave up spending 10min reading in english,
and I read it in 1 min in chinese version.
in fact life cound only be life because it has countless of the possibility that goes into it, we can never tell whether a prole's life is bad or an inner party member's life is good.
but at least we could do something in our own when party member ridiculously ignored us,
and i really want to see how they pay that price
Will you keep fighting the good fight if you know you have no hope of winning?
Taylor Swift is loved by most and hated by many, but she continues to go out and perform night after night for those who love her most. She initially ties into the same pain that one would go through from a break up or through hard times. Yet, some people still have the opinion to point out the smallest flaw’s about her when in fact she is doing something that she has spent half of her life trying to be the best at.
Her strong attraction for men has affected many that dislike her as well, dating guys and quickly finding another.
Just as Mr. Feraco said in the Foundation Questions sheet from last semester,
“What would you do if you knew you could not fail?”
Why is it that she can’t go a day without being harassed by those who are not superior in her life and under power in every possible human way, shape, or form?
The woman lives her life just as she wants to and appreciates what life gives her everyday through her lyrics.
She accepts the change life brings and does what she does best, and adapts to survive.
Some would say that her lyrics sound so similar to other great country singers and some say, “She is just a wannabe country singer that couldn’t make it because of how inanimate her lyrics were compared to other country singers.
So you see here,
She struggles everyday with the pressure that society places on her, and somehow manages to play a good role. She attempts to censor her personality for the uprising youth that looks up to her.
Music will always be apart of our lives and in a way, so will football.
In football during the offensive play, Late in the fourth quarter the running back will either run the ball to score or the quarterback will have to sling it to the open receiver to rack on the game winning touchdown. The similarity between football and Taylor is that the Quarterback “Taylor” is going to have to make a decision, which in a sense is a very risky one in fact.
The quarterback would then need to use his own proper instinct to adapt to the way the defense has positioned him self and make the best possible decision for him self and for his team.
Taylor does the same but in a less physical environment and adapts to the way society raises political opinions and deals with blitzing opinions.
Football is a moving target that will in fact be replaced by those of the next generation. Just as music, we will remember the music that gets sampled off but always forget the person who first wrote the piece.
So football players and athletes run the risk of getting replaced and sometimes forgotten.
We fight the fight that we so dearly love but have no hope in officially winning.
Taylor lives life to the fullest and puts everything that she possibly has out on stage, omitting all negative feedback and putting a shock to humanity.
“FEARLESS is getting back up and fighting for what you want over and over again, even though every time you've tried before you've lost.”
― Taylor Swift
hi Adrian, i liked how you had the courage to write about taylor swift because a lot of people would not. I also liked how you incorporated football into your writing as well. You were able to combine two very strange topics and make it sound sensible. Good job.
WOW! You've progressed so much as a write from week one. I've been reading your blog, and this one is much stronger than a lot of the things you delivered in the past. Keep up the great work.
As for T. Swift, I hate to say this because I know how you feel about her, but I don't really like her. I think we're going to have to disagree on this one.
Great job, keep up the amazing work A.
I love the comparisons between Taylor and football. Its ironic how the most successful people get the most [abuse over] it. Your also completely right about the fact that we can't officially win.
Great post all around.
I found in interesting that you compared Swift to a quarterback, as if she was a "general" or "game manager" of her own field.
As for Swift, I do not criticize her for being a human being. (I don't think most normal human beings do that either)
I am a person who listens to a wide variety of genres and enjoys and appreciates music in general, but I have come to think Swift to be a very mediocre musician. My criticism only goes so far, of course-- it stops there.
I think most people mean to criticize an artist's craft rather than the artist's human behavior or personality, but they tend to say hurtful or unintentional things. Or, at least that's what I think.
If you want to listen to real country, then Johnny Cash is the solution
“The opposite of courage in our society is not cowardice, it is conformity. Even a dead fish can go with the flow.”
In the sick and twisted world of Oceania, there are three types of people: Inner Party members, Outer Party members, and Proles. Their lives are very different from one another, but none are worthy of admiration.
In the end, one can say that there are actually only two types of people: oppressors and the oppressed. You either conform to what Big Brother wants you to be… or be eliminated. Despite the “mute protest in your own bones,” you do what Big Brother tells you to (Orwell 73).
“Dictators free themselves, but they enslave the people.”
The Inner Party members are few in number, but they’re the most powerful. They exercise full control over the people; they rule with an iron fist and eliminate any threat that opposes them. Inner Party members do not value anyone else’s ideas but their own; you conform to their ways or get vaporized.
The Inner Party members simultaneously dominate the lives of the miserable Oceanians while indulging in luxuries like enjoyable coffee, decent cigarettes, and chocolate. They’re “happy” while everyone around them is oppressed.
To be an Inner Party member is to be a cruel tyrant.
I wouldn’t want to be an Inner Party member…
“All violations of essential privacy are brutalizing.”
-Katharine Fullerton Gerould
Next in the hierarchical ranking are the Outer Party members; people like Winston Smith. They are the underlings in Big Brother’s Party; they do all the necessary work for the Party to successfully operate. If Big Brother is the “Queen” ant, they are the “workers” – they’re mere slaves to the Party.
Outer Party members are completely dedicated to the Party - there is no time for “ownlife.” If you’re caught doing something Big Brother doesn’t like, your worst fears will come true.
Unlike the Inner Party members, the Outer Party members do not get to indulge in any luxuries. Their homes are shanty, their food is gross, and worst of all, they are under constant surveillance.
The telescreens in their (decrepit) homes constantly watch their every move and listen to any audible sound they make. An Outer Party member has never conceived the idea of privacy.
If you’re an Outer Party member, just remember: “Big Brother Is Watching You.”
I wouldn’t want to be an Outer Party member…
“When ignorance gets started it knows no bounds.”
Lastly, there are the Proles. Even more ignorant than the rest of Oceania, the Proles are literally oblivious to Big Brother’s dominance over them. Their lives consist of working, mating, getting drunk and playing the lottery – essentially, they’re just dumb animals – and Big Brother realizes this.
It’s apparent that the Proles are not a threat to Big Brother, despite making up 85% of the population. Because of this, the Party does not bother expending resources in the Prole district – they go unmonitored. Since Big Brother has less influence in the Prole district, there is lawlessness and more “freedom.”
The life of a Prole is not ideal, but when compared to being a cruel Inner Party member or a constantly-monitored Outer Party member, the life of a Prole appears to be the most “preferable” option.
Proles are animalistic in nature – they’re oblivious to the world around them and easily subdued by pornography and lotteries. They’re stupid beyond description, but honestly, I find that they live the “best” lives in comparison to the Inner/Outer Party members. Considering the fact that any attempt to change things in Oceania would be futile, I’d choose to be a stupid, ignorant Prole.
The Proles seem to make the best of things.
What can I say?... As the saying goes, “Ignorance is bliss.”
This is pretty interesting. Your blog is very very very similar to mine. The formatting and how we both structured our blog.
I really enjoyed reading your post because I to would be a prole but the thing that caught my attention was the way you expressed the way that the proles really live. I had thought about it to but you brought up some points that I had not thought about.
The structure to your blog is very great. They're like short bursts after another.
I liked reading your post and the the way you told us why you didn't want to be an Inner or Outer Party member and why you would want to be a Prole.
“It's the truth, trust me.”
Senior year is approaching its end, and this is the time where the senior class shows its final colors. It's at this time where I realize who my real friends are, and who I can trust to still be in my life, even past college. It's scary to find out who you can't trust; at the same time, it's surprising to see who you can.
I had a saying to myself whenever meeting someone.
“If you cannot be yourself, then I'm not really your friend. What's the point of being your friend if you are only going to lie to me all the time, without ever getting the chance to meet the real you.”
However, the truth hurts. I had a friend where I thought I was really close with. I considered him to be a brother. We would tell everything to each other, knowing that we had someone to rely on. Unfortunately, the truth can sometimes be overwhelming, and fights continued to arouse. I could have easily ended our friendship after the third or fourth fight, but I didn't. I valued his honesty.
A year passed, and our friendship began to diminish. More fights began to arise, and solutions were never made. I tried to fight for our friendship, hoping that things will be better. It never did. I even had thoughts that our friendship would die out on its own. Eventually, I stopped, and time passed.
But I didn't give up on him.
It's weird, because people would think stopping means giving up. However, I thought that because we were so close, and trusted each other so much, that we became vulnerable. So vulnerable that even the slightest problems could sour our friendship. I believed that time would separate us, but only enough so that we can still be friends at some point again.
Now, I see him again. After a month of being separated, I still value him as a friend. We talk. We laugh. We still are friends.
I want people to be honest with me, however, not to the point where they have to rely on me. Even now, I've met others where trust has become an issue that hurts our bond. However, if we were really friends, we can be honest with each other, and trust that our friendship can survive.
“Trust no friend without faults...” Doris Lessing
It's good that you are wantint for such an honest person and that you are still that persons friend, thanks for the great read
I'm just like you, finding out who I can trust and who I can't. I also understand this process of losing a friend because I've had to go through that before as well, though it seems you had an even worse time. Thanks for the read!
I like how you tied in the story of you and your friend with this topic! I felt that the experiences you had with friendship really helps your message go far. Really good read and application to your real life!
Ahead are scraps of papers found December 24, 92 NW. They are remnants of the lost time humanity has suffered and maybe the only surviving document of a rebel during the dark beginning. They appear to have been written by the same writer.
Who would have known the book 1984 would one day become the exact truth? I didn’t, and I’m sure everyone else in the class of 2013 didn’t either. With some strange turn of events, a war with Russia, some shadow group who idolised the book 1984 and a majority of the human society without the foresight to see this coming lead to me in a rundown bar that could collapse any moment, drinking my concerns away. It’s quite ironic in strange way that someone pours the remaining part of his life to craft a warning beacon, a neon lit sign that says, “Do Not Go This Way!” and everyone seemed to be drawn to that light when the dominos started falling.
Throwing the cup at the bartender’s face, tossing the money into the air, watching these machine men jumping at the dough with faces of glee and walking away from the bar ignoring the chaos I just caused. That image appears before my half-cup of alcohol. With I sigh, I recall the powerlessness I have. The Party would wipe me out before I even gained a chance to rally the people needed to prove a statement, just as it did to all my friends who chose to rebel. They fought brilliantly for a total of 4.3 seconds before the fight turned into a one-sided slaughter fest. I warned them, this fight is not one you fight with swords and shields, but they only responded by saying the pen would not be of any worth with the party destroying any book that was not hand crafted by the their people. I agreed with them but I also knew that the only way to truly stand a chance against the party was to give them exactly what they wanted, power. They ignore my words and went off to war. Three years later I had to stand among the crowd of cheering people to watch them confess, one by one to their “crimes to humanity,” some even said with joy they loved “Big Brother” and stabbed themselves. With a disgusting pit in my stomach, I went with the movements, knowing The Party had no way to telling my voice is not mixed in with the crowds.
Nowadays I find myself walking alone on the streets watching the brilliant sun rise and sink, like it did in the times before. I can do these daily walks as a prole, a role I only managed to get by hiding within the shadows for weeks, until everyone believed I was vaporised. Surviving on rats, river water and stealing every now and then when people were shouting to the screens, I knew the Inner Party was still aware of my survival during those hard times. Maybe they still are, not that I care now but what pains me the most now is recalling everyone I know. Each one either fell to the might of the party or their self focused love.
That is something I can not do, not anymore. I don’t want to see anymore suffering, most of all pointless suffering. There are days when I stare at the ocean by the beach, a place I can only get to by sneaking about, and remember what it was to love someone. To give your all for them, and forget yourself. That is something I don’t want to fall into again. It’s a foolish state of mind that only leads to loss of reality.
A dream state that is maintained by some mystical force. There was this saying I heard somewhere, in a book. It said the reason we fall in love with someone we’ve just meet is because they have something we don’t. Maybe people fall for Big Brother because “he” has the “power” to destroy the “enemies.”
I can’t believe I’ve done it. I gotten out of that accursed place. After years of mind-controlling, watching people suffer, lying and stealing I finally got out. They’ve been feeding me for years that the rest of the world was similar to Oceanian, but I am about to find out once and for all. I will prove to myself that the world is not in the state they’ve been saying. Somewhere out there, freedom is real and the enemies we’ve been fighting for so long are truly just humans who seek to fulfill their dream of happiness. If one day I can find a way to teach others the joy of helping each other, the joy of making connections and learning from one another, and the joy of overcoming their fears of the unknown maybe reality can be changed. Maybe humanity is not a loss cause just yet. I don’t truly know if this is possible though.
Humanity will dead. No hope if people don’t know their potential. Discover self, the key.
Scrap 4 was found along a human skeleton in a country once called Africa and seemed to have been written by a different person. It is unclear whether or not this statement is true. It is also highly likely that he is just the same person who wrote Scrap 1-3 but simply forgotten how to write after not having to use the skill for many years. Maybe the answers will be found if we could read the rest of the papers but the rest are more unclear due to time or make less sense than Scrap 4. Some even seems to have been written to a non-physical entity with suggest the writer became delusional over the course of the years. Further research will be needed to understand who the writer is and his psychological sanity.
Your layout of the scraps was really fun and creative!
Sounds like Winston is the mysterious author (moved to Africa?).
I like your quote that "the reason we fall in love with someone we’ve just meet is because they have something we don’t." It didn't enter my mind before that Big Brother is admired "because 'he' has the 'power' to destroy the 'enemies.'”
Honestly the author is me. I just had the world enter world war 3 and have the new leaders create a "real life" version of 1984. The thing is, and you'll realize if you read it carefully, I didn't write in the eyes of a person in 1984, but of a future if the world became one. Just because the year 1984 ended, the world isn't necessarily safe from becoming it. Well, I don't think it will anyways so we are safe for now.
This was a very interesting way to answer the prompt. I've been in Mr. Feraco's class since September and I've never seen a response done in this format. I virtually applaud you on your creativity! However, I think you could have been a bit more clear in stating your point, unless the major point was just that humanity is in danger. I wasn't able to discern what prompt you were addressing just by reading this, so maybe work on that? Also, there were a few errors that you could have prevented with another read through - I'm also a high suspect of this; if you look at my I think tenth blog from first semester, I wanted to post it so fast that I neglected to re-read it and edit it and it cost me points. All and all though, I think this was done well, especially because of the pure creativity put into it, good job!
Thanks for telling me the advice, it really helps! I really should double check everything even though I just want to submit it and get everything done with.
Now I purposely made it difficult to discover the prompt because I was trying to answer multiple prompts as once. The main one I focused on though was the " Now that you’ve finished the book, it’s easier to ask you to put yourself in an Oceanian’s shoes. Who would you rather be – an Inner Party member, an Outer Party worker, or a prole? Would you quietly rebel? Would you openly resist control? Would you conform for your own safety? Would you accept doublethink and orthodoxy? Could you bring yourself to love Big Brother? Assess yourself honestly."
Thank you for reading it.
"After they found out the glass slipper fit her, they took her away and then she got married to the prince. Then they lived happily ever after...Mom, do you think that can happen to me when I get older?"
"Nana, it's just a story. It doesn't usually end up that way."
"I don't care. I just know that when I grow up I will find my prince and then we will get married and live happily ever after, just like Cinderella and all the other princesses!"
Looking back to when I was younger, I was obsessed with the idea of finding my prince charming. I would always throw on my princess costumes and reenact my favorite scenes from all the Disney princess stories. Sometimes I would imagine I was Belle, dancing with the Beast or maybe Sleeping Beauty who was awaken from her slumber by prince's charming kiss. I had this strong belief that I could be like any one of the princesses. I would one day meet my prince and then we would live happily ever after. A little girl's dream.
As I grew up, I really had no idea what love was like, or what it is suppose to be like. What could I base it off of when I didn't have any experience? All I had were these fictional stories about princesses being rescued by princes. I knew that what happened in fairytales wouldn't happen to me in reality because first of all, I am not a princess. I am just an average girl. I don't have a wicked stepmother or wicked stepsister and I am definitely not being treated like a servant in my house. I don't meet the requirements that are necessary for being a princess and finding my prince charming. So what is the reasoning behind these fairytales that I cherished so much when I was younger?
It wasn't until Feraco asked the question "Can a belief in something fictional still be important?" did I realize why I cherished my fairytales. My fairytales gave me hope about finding true love. It allowed me to have this idea of meeting my prince charming one day. Even though the stories are fictional, the message that they convey is real. So, yes my belief in prince charming and living happily ever after is important because it gives me hope. It gives me something to look forward to experiencing. It allows me to think that it might be possible to have my own fairytale. Who knows, maybe I will meet my prince charming one day and live happily ever after.
"I want your love just like a fairytale
Have a happily ever after like a fairytale
I want my prince charming the man of honor
Whatever you called him I just want the one for me"
- Fairytale, Enya
You know what i am thinking while i am reading your post, "Once Upon A Time", that drama just pops up to my mind. I remember in the very beginning of the show, Snow White said something that got me thinking - "we like to read these stories because they can help us in our lives, helps us to lead our lives ." so yah, fiction beliefs are very much exist.
Thank you for the great read!
I've always thought that Disney movies conveyed a sweet naive lie so that it's young audience could be sheltered from the brutish and torn world that adults live in.
But in way, I praise Disney for this, for they instill hope in such a world.
Thank you for the read!
Now excuse me, my inner Donald Duck calls for me.
Your post is really well written. I thought it was really cute. I also use to like to reenact my favorite scenes from different princess movies. I can totally relate. Keep up the good work.
I really like what you wrote about the fairy tales. I'm sure that at one point of our life, we wished to be the princess in one of the fairy tales. It seemed like princesses would always end up living "happily ever after" with their prince. The stories may be fictional, but it surely brings a lot of hopes to this world. When we are in despair, the stories would always cheer us up.
Thanks for a great read!
I thought your post really connected with your real life. How you tied in childhood fantasies with 1984 was really clever i think. I really liked how you ended your post with the fairy tale, further telling your views. Well written and great post!
A few years ago, one of my classmates said that I was like a puppet. I was manipulated easily, and I was often too selfless for my own good.
I knew that many of my peers took advantage of me. The problem was that I didn’t see any harm in my submissive behavior. When someone compared me to a puppet, I suddenly realized that I was hurting my own image by being a nice person. I also realized that I will be unable to get anywhere in life if I continue to be manipulated. I found the puppet comparison insulting, so I tried my best to not be manipulated again. I became more willing to say “no” when people asked me to do pointless favors. I tried to stand up for myself.
Can I confidently say that I am never manipulated nowadays? Even though I try to resist manipulation, I still find myself absentmindedly obeying other people’s orders and saying “yes” too readily.
A situation in which I was submissive occurred about a week ago. Last Thursday night, there was an orchestra concert in the Performing Arts Center. During class that day, a fellow orchestra student asked me whether I would be willing to be on the stage crew. Without hesitating, I replied, “Sure.” In the afternoon, I suddenly realized that I really didn’t want to be on stage crew. I began to wonder why the other student asked me, out of all the people in the class, to be on stage crew. Then it hit me: it was probably because I seemed to be the type of person who is persuaded easily. I then decided that before the concert, I will tell the other student to find someone else to take my spot. Fortunately, he didn’t come to get me, probably because there were already enough people helping out.
Not to sound self-deprecating, but I dislike my submissive behavior. I think to myself that I will resist manipulation, but I still end up being manipulated. This weakness has often prevented me from obtaining what I want. If I’m in Winston’s position, I would eventually let go of my own beliefs and surrender to O’Brien. Realistically speaking, most people would surrender also, which explains why the Party is so successful in controlling people’s thoughts and actions. After all, when people fail to learn the Party’s teachings, there is always Room 101.
If I was born and raised in Oceanian society, I would likely follow the rules of the Party without questioning them. The reason is that I would not know what it means to be free, or how it feels to live in a world without Big Brother “watching over” me. However, if I was born and raised during a time in which the Party had not yet existed, I would recognize the corruption that plagued society. I would understand the difference between freedom and slavery. I would know that war is not peace, and that ignorance is not strength. When the Party rises to power, I would understand that it is inherently evil.
Would I rebel if I know that the Party is destroying society? I would quietly rebel, but only if there are other people rebelling with me. Being with someone like Julia would encourage me to have unorthodox thoughts. Otherwise, I would feel insane and force myself to act in a manner that would please Big Brother.
Regardless of the Party’s extreme hostility and power, it is still worthwhile for people to rebel, if they feel motivated to do so. There is the chance that they will end up victorious. During the civil rights movement, African Americans managed to significantly lower the amount of racial discrimination in the U.S. They had a slim chance of succeeding, given that many Americans believed that people with darker skin were inferior. Also, the U.S. was already accustomed to racial discrimination. The African Americans still managed to gain equal rights, exemplifying that it is possible to eliminate injustice in a seemingly hopeless situation.
The people who live in Oceanian society would have an even slimmer chance of succeeding in eliminating injustice. However, they would never know whether they will succeed unless they try. People who have the desire to promote justice, honesty, and hope should set aside their fears and take action. Even if they face something that cannot be defeated, it is better to fail while trying rather than not try at all.
I admire your ability to fluidly blend personal experience with solid facts. Keep fighting the good fight (against the evils of others)!
Hi Eric, I liked reading your post - you added a personal touch to it and I enjoyed reading it.
To survive in Oceania is no simple feat. The unwritten “laws” restrict virtually everything. Party guards patrol the streets, telescreens constantly watching over everyone, and even children are spies for the Party. No one is safe.
I highly doubt anyone at all would want to live in a society where even people of the highest social class must be vigilant about their actions. But if forced upon to live in such a society, which class would be best?
The Inner Party Members would be the most probable decision of the respondents. They are the few on the top of the social ladder, who could resist? But you live on knowing that you are the reason for those below you suffering, and yet you do nothing about it. It is the equivalent of you watching tv, and a commercial asking for donations to feed starving children somewhere around the world. They show pictures and clips of skin and bones kids scavenging garbage and waste in search of food or an item of value. You know deep inside you that you want to help, it’s in our nature, but given most of our current positions, we do not have the money to donate. To be an Inner Party Member is to knowingly be able to help everyone below you, but able to block the idea out of your mind the moment it steps in. “The moment we stop fighting for each other, that’s the moment we lose our humanity.” (Adrian Helmsley) Is it worth being on the top in exchange for your humanity? I think not.
The Outer Party Members is the average day to day man. You work for no reason at all, you become a virtual automaton. Everything you do is for the Party, in fear of the Party, and because of the Party. Everyday is almost pointless, and in fear of accidentally slipping and committing face or thought crime. In the eyes of the Inner Party, you are expendable, if you needed to be replace, you will be without a second thought. As an Outer Party member, you do what you need to do to avoid being vaporized, including giving up facial expressions and emotions. The Inner Party will slowly but surely strip you of everything that makes you human in order to preserve the power they hold.
Proles.... The bums of Oceania. Simple, poor, and obsessed with the lottery, they don’t lead much of a life. But nor do the other two classes. They do as they wish for they have their own territory with no telescreens watching them. Simple as they may be, they are the closest resemblance to an actual human being.
All in all, the choice is obvious.
2+2=5 (The Lukewarm)
Are you such a dreamer
To put the world to rights?
I'll stay home forever
Where two and two always makes a five
I'll lay down the tracks
Sandbag and hide
January has April showers
And two and two always makes a five
It's the devil's way now
There is no way out
You can scream and you can shout
It is too late now
“2+2=5 (The Lukewarm),” Radiohead
That was the answer that my TI calculator gave me when I punched in two plus two.
I had just finished reading 1984 when I popped in Radiohead’s Hail to the Thief in my stereo. I was alone, the rest of my family going out somewhere to an undisclosed location without me as usual. I ran through the house, closing every window so that no one would hear my precious music that I would hoard to myself. While the stereo was preparing itself to play the CD, I twisted the volume knob to the left with a fast, violent turn, almost ripping the darn thing off. “2+2=5” began to play.
Er, Er, Er. Feedback and some instruments clashing in the background.
I've listened to the song numerous times before reading 1984, but on that dark Saturday evening, it seized me, blindsiding me with its all too familiar lyrics.
"I'll stay home forever where two and two always makes a five."
I was dumbstruck. How could I have missed an obvious lyric, a message that was so apparent and right in my face? For heaven's sake, the reference to 1984 was even in the title! I sat right in front of my speakers, trying to analyze every single lyric that was soon to be sung by Thom Yorke's haunting voice.
"You can scream and you can shout. It is too late now."
I imagine him all alone in "the place where there is no darkness," pestered by the eternal light that shines over him.
Nothing but loneliness. Nothing but the blinding light. Nothing but... the Truth! The truth that the Party bestows on us. The truth that we take comfort in. The comfort in two plus two equals five. Because we have nothing but the truth.
TWO AND TWO MAKE FIVE.
Over and over again... This simple phrase of four words strangles me in its relentless and unforgiving vice grip. Four words that just linger in my mind for some strange, unknown reason. At times I could hear a faint voice saying those words. Two and two make five! Two and two make five! Two and two make five! All I can imagine is Winston in his pale, ghostlike state scraping those words on his small slate. It's quite pathetic, really. But it's something to ponder about, especially if it haunts you where ever you go.
Just as soon as I realized "2+2=5" was on repeat for the tenth time, I skipped towards the next song (Sit Down. Stand Up.) and slowly turned the volume knob all the way to the right, low enough so it does not destroy my ears, but high enough so that the music 'floats' throughout my room. I couldn't help but pick up my calculator on my desk and-- you guessed it-- punch in two plus two.
I nodded. Again, two plus two.
The same result.
I kept adding those two numbers, inwardly expecting a four but simultaneously --for some reason-- hoping for a five.
I don't know why I did this, but I continued for about a good two minutes.
Such a simple phrase.
TWO AND TWO MAKE FIVE.
But it's not at simple at all. Nothing at all is simple. Nothing in this world is simple. We'd like to think that way, but it is not. We believe in what we are told because it gives us comfort-- the comfort in knowing that there are others who share the mutual belief. It doesn't matter what or who is feeding us information. As long as there are others, we are safe, we are secure, we are comfortable, we are protected by the wall of "truth." But once the wall cracks open, and one escapes from the world where they once knew and loved, they see what was intended to be seen: reality. The universe in its natural beauty is quite mysterious, it is not clear and transparent such as the "truth." I would like to think that the perception is something in us, something created inside our minds. I begin to think otherwise though. Perception, in our world, is something that our elders and rulers plant in our minds, adding illusions so that they may alter reality to their "truth." We nurture the seeds that were planted in us by believing it until it becomes natural, and we shelter it from outside forces by defending it and dismissing contradicting beliefs. It's as simple as that. No questions, no thought. Just the natural instinct of believing. Frightening, if you think about it. All your life you were told to follow a belief taught to you be a higher power, whether it be a cleric, a politician, or an elder. That belief would otherwise be inhumane, stubborn, or downright wrong-- but then again, what is right, and what is wrong? It's all you know. It's all you know, so you take comfort in it. The unknown is dangerous and you dare not step into its territory, the reality being the unknown. It is a sheep following a blind shepherd.
But we are not sheep.
Or at least we were not meant to be.
We were not meant to conquer our own kind, to bend reality into our own versions of the "truth." What right does one have to do such things? To keep the peace? To hide reality so that our skins may be saved? What we may not know is actually trying to kill us, yet we are told that we are safe and secure. Or it might be vise versa. But it is important that we are shown reality and that we are to perceive with our minds with no illusion to alter it. I would rather have one hundred revolutions than live in a uniform world of conformity and dishonesty.
There is no such thing as a utopia. It cannot exist because we are flawed creatures, so therefore attempting to establish a utopia is utterly pointless. Flaws are what makes us unique. The struggles, the battles we envision, it is portrayed in our art. Those struggles, are bloody, yet beautiful. The struggle for what the truth really is an eternal battle, and there could possibly be no end, and one must prepare themselves to fend from the hordes of attackers.
In the meantime,
Sit down, stand up
Sit down, stand up
Walk into the jaws of hell
Walk into the jaws of hell
Sit down, stand up
Sit down, stand up
We can wipe you anytime
We can wipe you out
"Sit Down. Stand Up (Snakes and Ladders)" Radiohead
I really enjoyed your blog because of the connection you made with the Radiohead song and 1984. It was simply brilliant the way you brought forth the meaning of the song and connected it to your own beliefs. Overall it was a really great blog because of the song quotes you used and your ability to incorporate your voice in your writing. Great job
I really liked the way how you started out your blog with two plus two equals five, and than later on stating the truth about how when you use your TI calculator, the answer is different.
Hi March, I liked how your blog because it showed your interest and obsession with "2+2=5." I especially enjoyed the part about how you used your calculator to add the numbers together. Your blog was different because of how you connected song lyrics to your blog and you transitioned it very smoothly. Good job!
Man your post is really obscurely structured. I enjoyed the way you stuck to the 2+2=5 metaphor. It was an interesting read. The metaphor really gets to you the more that you think about it, huh?
How do I decide if I would like someone to be more honest than what I am with them, less honest than what I am with them, or just the same? If you think about it closely its almost impossible to know if someone is more, less, or the same amount of honest with you.
Let’s say I love cranberry juice and that if I could drink that the whole day I would (cranberry is my favorite type of juice). What to me tastes amazing and delicious might taste terrible for someone else. Of course I will be able to know this because of the expressions we make when we try, eat, or drink something new. If the thing we try is pleasing to our taste buds our eyes might open up with pleasure. Sometimes we even do something like “aahh” or for us teens it is more of a “deng this is good”, still we are expressing aloud how much it is we like the new taste. Therefore who ever took us to go try that new pleasing taste knows we liked it because we are expressing to them what we think and vice versa.
Trust and Integrity.
So what happens when you can’t express trust or honesty? How do you express trust and honesty? It shouldn’t be a difficult question to answer because it is very easy to say “oh I can trust her” or something like “once someone has lost my trust I never trust again”, yet for me it really is a difficult question. How do you know, how do you confirm that someone does trust you and is not only pretending? Doesn’t that happen with a lot of friends? You think you can trust them a lot then something happens and at the end you end up saying “I shouldn’t have trusted them”, so if you “shouldn’t have trusted them” what made you think you could trust them in the first place?
I feel like trust is not something that you can explain or confirm to me it is more of being able to show and prove trust. I’m using trust a lot instead of integrity but think about it they both come together, you cannot have one without the other. If you trust someone it is because you know they will not lie to you and they have proven to you that they are honest with you therefore you end up trusting them. Basically you either have both or none because you can’t just have one or the other it just doesn’t and won’t work like that. You cannot trust someone who lies to you and you shouldn’t lie to someone who you trust (notice I did say shouldn’t, because of course you always can).
Knowing exactly how honest a person is with you is something that I almost consider impossible.
I can know exactly how much you like chocolate, because you’ll tell me and if you didn’t like it you wouldn’t eat it, it wouldn’t be pleasing.
I can know exactly how much you hate doing homework, because you’ll tell me and when you do it I will see you complaining.
I can know exactly how much you like to be on facebook because you’ll tell me and ill see you rush to it every time your phone sends you a notification.
I will know this and that about you.
I will know what happened here, there, and now with you.
I will know everything.
I will know anything.
I will know all this only because you will tell me and explain to me why it is that you do or that you don’t like or dislike that one thing. It will be your action that will support what you told me or will prove otherwise because you cannot drink a glass of cranberry juice if you really dislike it.
How will I know something which you will not be able to tell me or explain to me? How will I be able to confirm something that is only in your head? One of those things which only you really know the answer to.
It is not possible.
Just like thought crime, the Inner Party wants to know exactly what is going on inside the heads of those in the Outer Party but they still cannot find a way. So how do they know the truth? They simply don’t. How do they know if they are having thoughts that go against the party?
They simply don’t.
So how do I know when someone is lying to me about how much they trust me or when they tell me that I can trust them, “don’t worry you can trust me” that’s what I hear to often.
I simply don’t.
It’s in my head to have hope and faith.
Hope and faith that they are telling me the truth.
I only hope that I will not regret trusting them in the end.
You cannot put a limit or an amount on trust and integrity. If there is trust you just feel it, you don’t plan to trust each other it just happens. I guess that at the end it’s a natural thing to gain and lose trust, and if it isn’t then I don’t understand why we have gotten so used to the feeling of being trusted and being betrayed.
(Not sure if it makes sense but I tried to explain it as best as I could.)
I really liked your blog, i felt like i got a better understanding of what you think about trust. I completely agree when you say "you either have both or none", i agree, trust and integrity go hand and hand. i liked what you said at the very end of your blog about trust being natural- becuase it just should happen. good job.
I really like the intro, where you compared honesty to a person expressing his or her views on drinking cranberry juice and how the cranberry juice symbolism appears throughout your writing.
Great use of repetition in the middle (nice and to the point). I totally agree "if there is trust you just feel it, you don’t plan to trust each other it just happens." It's a very natural thing to do.
I enjoyed reading your blog.
I definitely agree that one does not simply know the exact truth of what others are thinking. I also agree that trust "just happens", because it's spontaneous, but sometimes we make mistakes by trusting the wrong people.
Thanks guys for taking the time and reading my post, I'm glad you guys agree and that it made sense.
I have always been a fighter. I am passionate about what I love. To me, impossible is only a reason not to try.
After spending three weeks in Spain, I came home to family. I told my mom, “I want to go to band camp tomorrow”. My mom stared at me like I was out of my mind. She told me doubtfully, “If you feel up to it tomorrow, then you can go”. Sure enough that morning, I was up at 6 in the morning ready to go. I could tell she doubted I would even be awake. Jet lagged and physically tired, I was awake and packed by 7. My eagerness to go outweighed my fatigue. So I went.
The other week my wisdom teeth were taken out. Everyone I talked to told me how much pain I would be in. I heard that I would be stuck in bed for at least two or three days. That same evening, I had a church meeting that I really wanted to go. With gums that were still bleeding and ice packs on my face, I went. Pain could not stop me.
The values I hold myself to are not comprisable. If I say that I will do something, I will do it. I am the person who does the right thing when no one else is watching. When I was in the 7th grade, I ran every mile to the best of my ability. I never cut corners or walked. It was just who I am. When I first met my best friend, she asked me why I am so nice to everyone I meet. I answered, “It is who I am”.
Whenever I see injustice or some wrong in my society, I go whole hardily to change that wrong. It isn’t that I am perfect or unfailing. (I fail just as everyone else does.) I will go out of my way to help someone, even if they do not appreciate it. At the very least, I made a difference
Back in semester one, Mr. Feraco asked us a question that I will never forget. “How do you face what cannot be defeated?” My whole class stared at their papers. After a few seconds of thinking, I wrote down my answer. HEAD ON.
Just because failure will happen does not mean it will be a meaningless experience. Knowledge of one’s self and world are always a possibility.
I once heard that there are a thousand lessons to losing. Even if I fail, I want to attempt the journey. Gilgamesh failed at defeating death, but he found satisfaction. WALL-E lived on a planet that was long forsaken. In pursing the impossible, not only did he find love but he brought life to earth and saved the human race.
Traveling is not defined by the destination, but by the journey. Heroes are not defined by the glory that they have, but rather the struggles they had to overcome and the choices they made. Some heroes perish because of their decicion to fight for what is right.
I will fight for the ones I love. I will speak out against wrongs. I am responsible for my actions when all is said and done. Giving up is accepting falsehood. Failing to rise is becoming numb to the world around me. I will fight and rise when I fall. It is who I am.
You seem like a very determined person Bobby from what i have read in you blog and that makes me look up to you. Through thick or thin it seems like you would push through anything. Nice job!
I like how you have such an awesome personality. You are not only kind to others and just, but you are also someone who would go through any obstacle to make your dreams come true or to do what you love to do. I can see you'll definitely succeed in whatever you want to pursue.
I remember a teacher telling a kid who wanted to be a cook that he should not only tell his parents but he should also take action by trying his best to make them change their minds that being a cook was not a really good job.
My God, getting wisdom teeth pulled out is horrible (I can tell from my friends even though I didn't have them pulled out)! You totally proved your mom wrong by really managing to get up so early despite your pain. You really took action.
It's very impressive to know you "never cut corners" or even "walked". I remember in middle school, lots of kids would just slack off when the PE teacher wasn't looking.
This post describes you so well, Bobby. Seriously, you're a fighter and you always do the right thing to get to the right place. I remember when you invited me to your Eagle ceremony, I would tell people "I'm going because Bobby is one of the few scouts that actually deserve that honor" because let's be honest, a lot of people don't deserve it. You're one heck of a guy and this post is completely accurate of who you are.
I absolutely loved that question too! Gotta love the fighting spirit! What's the use in not giving failure a hard time, right? It's great that you're so willing to fight for what's right, the best thing to fight for, and are so unfazed with pain. Pain is good, sometimes, but in the times that it is good it's worth it. Nice post!
I admire your tenacity and toughness. Those two traits are very difficult to come by and to obtain. They will serve you well for the rest of your life, because you will have to fight, and you have the qualities to do it well.
I feel that I am actually not susceptible to manipulation.
When I feel that people are using me, manipulating me for their own purposes, I speak up. It angers me to even to think that people will get close you for the single desire of using you. They pretend to want to be friends with you, pretend to want to get close to you, only because they need you to do something for them. It's hard on a person to find out that his friends are not really as friendly as they seem, to find out that all along he has actually been alone.
I remember for a good three years, I was "best friends" with two other girls. At first, I thought they were truly my friends, asking me to go to places with them, eating with me, chatting with me.
After a while though, I began to notice, the way they poked fun at me, the way they would insult me in my face. I realized they didn't really like me for who I am; I realized they pretended to be my friends so they would have some entertainment. It was a cruel waking up for me, finally understanding that I was in actuality nothing to the people I thought were my friends.
Even after I figured it all out though, I said nothing. To put it in plain words, I was being a coward. They would say things that would hurt me and I would laugh it off; they would plead me to do things for them and use our few years of friends as leverage.
In the end, I couldn't do anything for myself. I couldn't bring myself to speak up, to fight back even a little.
One of the girls moved to another school, breaking up whatever illusion of a friendship we had. It took a while, but I rebuilt myself with a new circle of friends.
Those three years changed me partly into the person I am now.
It's harder to let people get close to me now. I’m harder now, a lot less open, and more a listener than a talker. They are why I watch for those signs of manipulation, why I will speak up now.
It gets scary sometimes finding new people that I want to bring closer to me. Every once in a while I have to remind myself that my friends right now won't do what they did. My friends right now are not them.
I hate it that people will hide behind this facade to get what they want like those girls did. I feel that people must be honest as I am with them. If you have an intention behind what you are doing then say it. I will do the same. That is not to say though that I will do what you hope for me to do. Then it would depend on how close you are to me and how large a favor you’re asking for.
I think about back then and frankly, it doesn’t hurt anymore. I have friends that genuinely care for me now, ones that I know love me as much as I love them. I’m going to leave those girls in the past, so I can keep moving forward.
I am glad jessica that you finally found who your true friends really are and i hope now you feel much better about your self and are living a much better life.
hi Jessica, I enjoyed reading your writing. I liked how you used a real example from your life, it made your piece more intriguing. I'm sorry that you had such a rough time with your friends, I know how it feels to be in that situation. Im glad that you have found true friends. Keep speaking up for yourself!
I'm glad that you found who your friends really are. But out of curiosity, what made you really think they were only friends with you to poke fun at you?
At some point I realized that there was no way it was a friendship if only they were happy with how things were.
I really liked your blog because I can relate to your experience with false friends. Having them in the past, it does make you a lot tougher and makes you less trustful of others because you have been hurt in the past. But we can grow from it and choose better friends in the future.
This world is a scary place to live and the people who live in it are even more terrifying, but we trust them anyways. Sometimes I ask myself, “Why do I trust people, when I know that they could hurt me?” My answer to this is because I simply can’t be alone. I would go crazy. I need people. I put trust in them because I know the happiness I get from the relationship is worth the risk.
A life lived in fear is a life not lived. In order to really live life trust is a necessary thing. It’s what makes a relationship thrive and without relationships life can’t be fully lived. Choosing who we have relationships with can make us or break us. We can never know who will betray us. We aren’t psychic, so it is a huge risk we take when we choose whom we befriend.
“The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.”
The very first time I ever felt like I trusted the wrong person was when I was in 4th grade. I had the biggest crush on this boy and I couldn’t keep it to myself anymore. I wanted to tell someone, but I didn’t want everyone to know. I needed a person who I could trust and I decided to tell this girl about it, thinking that she was a nice and trustworthy person. She promised that she would keep it between us and that no one else would find out. Me being the trusting person that I am had no worries and fully trusted her with my secret. I was happy, but it didn’t last long.
She lied. She didn’t keep her promise. She betrayed me.
The next day I got to school and I hear my name. People were whispering around me and giggling. I knew what had happened. My secret was now everyone’s business and my worst nightmare came true. My crush found out. I was so embarrassed and I was so hurt by the girl who I thought I could trust. This was the first time I realized how much it hurts when I trust the wrong person and how big of a risk it is to trust people.
That was the very first day I asked the question, “Why do I trust people, when I know that they could hurt me?” At the time I really didn’t have an answer, but as I grew older and gained more life experiences I came to my answer. I need people. I cant live in fear of being hurt. Trusting is necessary and without it, my life would not be purposeful.
Michelle, Really nice job on your blog this week. I really like what you said about trust. As humans we need that companion, we need someone to trust in. Sometimes that trust is broken and it is hard to trust again. How can I trust again?You had the perfect quote to answer this question. "The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them"
I totally see what you're saying; you need people. You seriously need people, no matter what, because you have to have them there, just like Winston. You both need someone to believe in, whether they're worth believing or not, and trust is something you just want to give away. That's honestly a dangerous need but hey, we need to get close to people to get the good out of them and the bad just ends up being a lesson. We just need to be careful about how much we trust people, because sometimes trusting too much can make us fall, but we need to fall in order to get up! I like the fact that you can't live with the fear about being hurt; you're clearly very strong! Stay that way, because.. umm, that's an extremely useful trait to have. Nice post!
Strong blog, I was nodding my head and sometimes smiling while reading your blog. (I hope that doesn't creep you out)
We fight our battles to the end. We were taught to do that since we were young; that there is always some hope if you give it your best shot, and if you fail, at least you tried. Right? Here’s quick Psychology lesson; something I learned from Dr. Sutro. We are taught to fight our battles and that losing isn’t always bad when we are young, the pre-operational stage. A stage where we believe everything is supposed to lean our way and that even when losing, it benefits ourselves.
Let’s fast-forward to our current age, the formal operational stage of human development. This stage is defined by being able to see the abstractions of the future. In other words, as we grow up, we can see the bad that’s about to happen.
In this formal operational stage, do we still fight our battles the way we were taught as kids? Losing isn’t about us anymore, before, as kids, winning was winning and losing was still winning, but now losing is losing and losing means losing something... or worse, someone. We grow up to see bigger pictures, but sometimes that picture might just cripple us before the battle begins.
We always try to be the bigger person when it comes to our battles, however, how do we treat the people that try to undermine us? I for one am guilty of trying to manipulate the people I get pitted against myself.
It’s like a game of chess.
However, what am I suppose to expect my opponents to do to me? I don’t like to believe that I’m a very naïve person that is susceptible to manipulation, but I have been manipulated before and I probably will again in the future.
I would like to believe that I would be able to stand up to the injustices that occur to me. I want to be able to stand up and fight against those trying to manipulate me, however, more often than not, it happens right under my nose and I don’t even notice. I like to do thing for people, but it’s hard for me to realize when people begin to take me for granted. I don’t want to believe the people I thought were my friends are trying to manipulate me and abuse our relationship. I think it’s pretty hard for anyone to realize something like that, but it happens.
I don’t believe the citizens of Oceania are actually so weak in their own eyes that they can’t challenge their government. I believe that they all just don’t want to believe that they’re being manipulated. They want to know what to believe and that is something the Party is able to give them. Stability and knowing what to believe is something that isn’t easily given up. If the citizens were to find out that their government was lying to them, they wouldn’t do anything. They would continue to live their lives the only way they know how.
I really like your reference to Dr. Sutro as well as your strong ideals!
I agree that we try to stand against manipulation but we end up not
I like what you learned from Dr. Sutro, really got me to think about how we once viewed winning vs losing as kids.
It's hard to face loss now, and we try not to think of it with our friends. I do agree that we don't think our friends manipulate us, because we don't want to think they do. It's hard to imagine a friend doing that, but in reality it's the truth. Thanks for the read!
Ignorance is your new best friend. - Paramore
The thought of having to succumb to the Party makes me shiver in my boots. The Inner Party’s lust for power, and the Outer Party’s need to constantly control their minds to believe in Big Brother are both two types of people I would not ever want to be. I would think that staying dumb would be the best way to live life. Winston thinks too much, and the fact that he has to keep guard about everything makes his life a living hell. Contrary to Winston, we see the woman with the red, fat arms singing everyday as she happily hangs all her children’s clothes. People in the inner and outer party don’t sing; they live life according to rules. Their lives revolve around the government-- doing their duties, keeping a content smile, using doublethink. Why would I want to live that way? To question myself at every turn, and drive myself crazy by changing my reality of life when ever Big Brother says to. It is true that Proles are the dim witted and poor, but at least they live life to the best of their abilities. They may love big brother and have a large amount of patriotism, but their humanity is not lost. They live according to their own rules (which are slim to none,) but I would chose a barbaric, instinctive life over a constant battle with my own brain any day.
Ignorance is your new best friend.
Proles are almost mindless, and live to survive. They take it day by day, but they are still able to love, have children, and live without too much scrutiny by the Party. Proles believe what they are told without any afterthought, and honestly I would rather stay ignorant about my life and my surroundings, than to be gifted with thought and then have to suppress it. I guess it would just be easier, and less of a cost on my emotions and mental health.
I tend to not be a fighter in real life. I will accept things for what they are, or if I don’t believe in something I will keep my thoughts to myself and stay silent. If I did happen to be an Inner or Outer Party member, then I know what would happen to me, and it is not something that I want to face. To believe in Big Brother, and to practice doublethink and orthodoxy as an intelligible being makes my blood curdle, and that is why I resort to being a Prole. There are fighters, and there are followers. Don’t get me wrong, I will stand up for something when it is needed in our society, but against a force like The Party I know I could never have that strength to combat it alone.
Ignorance will be my best friend as a Prole. I will go about my life seeming like nothing is wrong, and I will accept it. It will be an easier life (other than the fact that I could die of starvation or a steamer.) To stay naive, to stay whole, to stay human, that is what I would want. I couldn’t be any of those things as a Party member. I’m just not strong enough.
It’s a Beautiful lie
It’s a perfect denial
Such a beautiful lie to believe in
So beautiful, beautiful it makes me…
-30 Seconds to Mars
Living a lie is a lot prettier than the reality Winston faces. Proles believe in anything, and everything. I can love Big Brother, I can yell at the top of my lungs with immense glee of a victory, but I can’t imagine living with the fact that I could have doubts in my mind. I do not want to think about being vaporized, or know someone is watching me and ready to pounce at a slight frown. To be a Prole is the perfect denial. It is the denial of thought. All quality thought would be lost as a Prole, and that’s okay. I would be okay. That is a bit better than what Winston could say.
i really liked your post, in class i choose to be a prole at first and then changed my mine because i could put into words what i wanted to say and i thought you said it perfectly "To stay naive, to stay whole, to stay human, that is what I would want"- i love this!
I really enjoyed reading your post. It is really well written. I specifically like how you wrote the first sentence of your blog. Keep up the good work.
I like how you used your quotes. Not only are they artists but this brings me back to middle school days.
The "perfect denial" I really like that, in two short words you can sum up everything and it does end up being the "perfect denial". I enjoyed reading your post because I to would be a prole if I had to pick. Nice job.
Fighting is essential to life
In the world, fighting is always necessary whether it's physical or mental. Like if you were to be injured you are going to have to pursue it even though the injury may overcome you, or the fact that there is an obstacle you and your best friend are fighting through and knowing that it will be a long journey. Life puts in so many obstacles in life that you have to fight through.
Fighting Through obstacle with a companion
Fighting is not always something you do alone but you can do it with others, In my situation my best friend fought with me. Since freshmen year, school life had been a long tough voyage to sail on, my best friend, however kept my boat sailing. The way I vented of how life is bogus, depression conquering and shadowing my mind, the times I was in need of prayer, he’s been with me through it all. He has been fighting with me back to back with me fighting in his fights and him fighting mine or together like how Mary Read and Anne Bonney fought back to back when in time of dire situations. Even though times were tough he was always there because *fighting is not always you have to do alone*.
Sidenote: Prayer helped me alot in high school.
I’m still alive
In Ohio, everything is different than California, so it means I had to fight everything physically. The environment, the air, the elevation, the people in Ohio are different, especially the drivers, but what hurted me the most were the injuries I was hit with. Everyday I suffered from injury; the first day was a jammed toe, second day I pulled my right forearm (my dominant arm), the third day I pulled my chest muscle, and so on so on till the day I left I was injured, but the question was that,”Did I fight through it and did I perform well?”
The answer is Yes.
During those times, I mope of how my whole body ached on performance days, but, *I fought through it*.
It was very painful but i put on a good fight against pain by pushing myself no matter how hard it was even if it risked pulling more muscles because performing was all it matters.
I felt like i was Shun Fujimoto, (1976 Montreal Olympic Mens Gymnastic Gold Medalist) though his injuries were far more worse than mine because he broke his ankle, but still pushed through the Olympics earning him a gold medal and torn ligaments. I know I wasn’t him but I still put up a very big fight with the pain that i acquired. The end of the week I felt like I was gonna die, but fortunately I didn’t and came back to California alive.
In The End
Through each event I’ve been through I pulled of such a nice fight. There was never a time where I just give up and stopped fighting for the things that come at me. There are moments however I know I would not win but nevertheless I always put up a good fight before I fall.
like Theodore Roosevelt said,“Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far.”
Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
One time in elementary school I announced to my friends that I could read their thoughts. I then proceeded over the next few days to “read” their minds, casually declaring every now and then what I thought one of them was thinking. Of course, I was always wrong. What was even more interesting though (and somewhat discouraging) was that I couldn’t even tell if my friends were happy, sad, or dominated by some other basic emotion at the time of my observation. I could sense nothing.
How then could I possibly tell if a person is less honest, just as honest, or more honest than I am?
I’ve resorted to the Golden Rule, hoping that others will treat me the way I treat them. Thus, I try to be as honest as possible. When I began to suspect the man my friend liked, I told her immediately that I didn’t think he had gotten over his previous crush. In that situation, I luckily emerged correct. I know that in my own relationship I would fight against any allegations of cheating, because I still wouldn’t know who was more honest. My only protection is blind faith in my favorite maxim, so that issues of honesty would ideally never arise.
Because I rely on blind faith alone, I could easily be duped by another. I cannot sense the slightest change in tone. And yet I continue to assume that I know when someone attempts to use me.
Most of the time it has to do with homework. The first couple of times I often think nothing of letting someone else copy. When it becomes almost a daily occurrence I start getting angry. Then I usually glare contemptuously. I’ve lost a couple “friends” over the years.
Of course, copying homework isn’t nearly as bad as true manipulation. Even though I’d like to believe I stand up to corruption of that type I also acknowledge that those who manipulate well are undetectable. They succeed because nobody can tell what they’re doing. Thus there’s no telling whether I have stood up to my manipulators because one could very well be one of my friends. I am basically powerless against manipulation and blind to dishonesty. Winston is very much the same. And like him, I would probably surrender to those forces, no matter how heroic I tried to act, no matter what I believe.
I really liked how honest you were with your post, especially the homework part and how you connected your own beliefs with Winston's!
Hi Joanna. I also feel that it is difficult to assess other people's honesty. There are many people who can easily hide their true intentions, like how an actor hides his true self in a movie or play. It is great that you value the Golden Rule. Everyone should do the same. Nice post!
This blog was surprisingly difficult for me to generate decent examples and a smooth continuous argument ... that is until I saw your entry and how you put homework and manipulation together. Funny how homework and manipulation can be put together like this.
Nice post and thanks for helping me move my entry along.
I liked your opening quote, it was very powerful.
Although, I'd like to ask you, "Do you truly wish to be treated as you treat others?" Sometimes I ask myself that, and I can't say yes because of some of the things I have done.
Just a question to get you thinking!
This actually an interesting prompt. I thought hard about it but sadly was not able to come up with a coherent response to it. My thoughts are somewhat similar to yours: I hope people are as honest with me as I am with them. However, I am conflicted. I personally would like people to be more honest with me, but if they are, I would probably feel guilty and would either want them to be less honest or force myself to be more honest. And so the middle ground in my dilemma, is your answer, treat me like I treat them.
Oh and, I guess you're not good enough at Gov to bring up government in ANY blog.
I am the type of person who would do just about anything to make someone happy.
Need a ride, ill be there, even if it means I miss curfew.
Need some money, ill give it, even if I know I don’t have money to give.
Need to pass your class, ill help you, even if it means I fail. Need someone to talk to, ill talk, even if it means ignoring someone else.
Need someone to stick up for you, ill fight for you, even if it means I’m the one taking the fall.
I’m sure you get the point, this is my life. Yes, I have gotten in trouble for so many of theses things, countless times and it continues to happen.
I love helping people, I love to make someone’s day.
I hate when someone is mad at me, I hate feel like I let someone down.
This is the reason that I am easy manipulated. People know that I love to help, they can sense it, so they use it to there advantage. You would think that if I’m writing about this, that I am aware of the problem I have, well that’s true but my heart won’t let me say “NO”.
A while ago I had been asked to drive a friend to an event that was very important to them; it would mean potential missing some school. I was happy to help, I didn’t think about the consequences or the people I would be upsetting, I just knew that if I had said no, I would feel bad and be a disappointment.
Three hours later, I had most defiantly missed some school, I had been waiting in the hot car the whole time, and I hadn’t eating all day. I was feeling light headed and sick. After another thirty minutes we finally left, while driving home I got my first ticket, for crossing a double white line. I never told my mom I was going and when she found out she was mad.
I did all of this to please someone else’s needs. They knew that I would take them. They knew they could manipulate my feelings, and make me feel bad in order to take them. I could have stuck up for myself, but I didn’t.
I am trying to learn how to stand up for myself, because as an adult I want to be able to say “No”, I don’t want to be guilted into doing things for others. I don’t want to feel like I’m a disappointment.
I don’t want to feel bad. I don’t want to be known as, “the girl that can’t stand up for herself”.
There is definitely a difference between helping others because you can and want to, and helping others because you can't say "no." Recognizing that is a good starting point, and I hope you find the strength to get yourself to where you want to be.
Helping someone is always a great feeling. Putting a smile on someones face is also a great feeling. The biggest problem about helping someone out is that they always expect it. Though helping is always a good thing you can allow yourself to get pushed around or else the happiness wont be worth it.
As an Oceanian citizen, none of us get the full picture of what's going on.
We have to make sure that we are one-hundred and-twenty percent safe from being vaporized.
It's like the telescreen in Childhood's End, where we can only see what's on the surface of the mirror, but not past it.
Just the thought of committing thought crime scares me. Who knows who could be watching? If I were to live as an Oceanian outer party member, I would be scared to try anything out of the ordinary when it feels like the Party is watching me the whole time.
It’s hard to take a step forward, but easy to step backward.
The Party of Oceania operates on the basis of devolving the society that their predecessors, the capitalists, have built and fostered. In order to survive, I must deteriorate my own mind progressively until I become essentially mindless.
I really can imagine myself in the Oceanian's shoes, however. I'm just too dependent on others. Who else could be better to look up to than Big Brother himself?
I'm too weak to change. I'm too weak to think.
Is it weird if it hurts to think? The disadvantage to holding onto the past is that the bad memories frequently come back and attack. Maybe if the past me slipped away, consumed by my own shadow that grows bigger so it would eventually devour my physical body as well, then I could live on... lifeless...
It hurts to think sometimes... Of all the pain, all the sorrow; it makes you feel weak if you dare speak out everything that's on your mind. People will just tell you to suck it up, making you feel even more insecure.
Yet in Oceania, that seems to be nonexistent. All of the burdens of the past simply slip away into the abyss, where the victim can no longer feel it.
Down the puddle, down the memory hole the pain goes... away...
It's funny though, to sacrifice the prospect of a better future in order to let go of the burdens of the past. Yet there is an even greater disadvantage: losing the most cherished, valuable, and happy memories. It would be insane to willingly turn myself into an "oceanian," where the black void presents itself on both sides of the spectrum: the trail of the distant past and the hopes for a brighter future.
I don’t want to lose such cherished memories of the past. They play a significant role in fueling my urge to keep on living. They provide me hope and inspiration to run forward. The happiness of these memories keeps me alive in the struggle of life.
They are too precious to be flushed down the memory hole.
If I were really an Oceanian, I have nothing to look forward to; I have no incentive to look behind me. There is only pitch-blackness on both sides.
So I'm just going to live my life, or whatever I have left to live for, and love big brother.
Interesting decision, man. I would of probably would just done the same. Sometimes its better to live on your knees than to die on your feet
“If not now, When?”( Incubus)
This was a motto that I lived my life by for the past summers. It helped me grow. It was my own sophisticated way of saying “Yolo”, without it permitting me to act without consciences. It was the saying that helped me kneeboard on a glassy lake, and smile at the passing trees. It helped me hop on a horse and pray to god for it to be over as soon as possible. It gave me stories to tell, memories, and moments that I will hold on to for the rest of my life.
It’s a magical time. It’s the moment that fills your memories. Every moment is a gift but we know that “success carries at least an equal probability of failure.” (Feraco) A moment in time can define you. A moment can also ruin you, but we can all agree that the moments like this matter because without them who would we be?
Without the failures and accomplishments that I have experience I would not be the person I am today. Without a most of my embrace of that present moment I would not have the wonderful memories that I have. It first started out with a choice. A choice “to sit it out or dance”( Dixie Chicks) but too often do I see people missing out on opportunities that could give them that chance.
The past is only stories now, and the future lay “just beyond the horizon.”
We are all chasing the sun set, and we see our footprints recede with the tide. We walk in the shadow of others before, but we get lost in the melodic waves.
Don’t get lost in the waves. Don’t forget how beautiful the people sitting next you are, or the sun while it’s heating the sand all day for you. Don’t appreciate things just because they are gone. The magic of the moments past die with it two.
Because no matter what “In this moment I am…” (Incubus)
I cannot honestly say I would outright reject a medical operation that would provide me with more years, or even months, of good health while I loom in my potential deathbed.
I cannot honestly say I would refuse to pay a fine to replace a book I knew I turned in while the overdue fee racks up and my access to a library gets shut down.
The difference here lies in the outcome. In the former there is nothing else to fight. It is the final battle. In the latter, there is plenty more up the road, more fights you have a potential of winning if you save you energy for them. It is the basketball equivalent of comparing game seven of the NBA finals to the first game in four games in five nights stretch. Regrets and what ifs would push me to give my all in the former. Knowledge that I can still salvage something meaningful in what is ahead coerces me to let go in the latter.
A battle is fought for something meaningful. A battle is surrendered when another takes precedent.
Honesty is honestly underrated. Pitting the truth against a lie, the lie is only advantageous if it is not discovered. This would work in situations like Kamala’s death in Siddhartha, where the recipient of the lie cannot ever see through it. This eludes the consequences of the truth being exposed. The goodbyes in life, however, do not outnumber the day to day exchanges. Every lie stated is a chance to be exposed. Every lie is a burden to carry.
In the cheating scenario, no matter how the situation is presented, there are certain premises that remain true. One, the unfaithful partner is lacking something in their current relationship that cannot be provided. This means that the relationship is likely unstable in the long run. Two, the fallout of the relationship will cause anger no matter what. Nothing can truly offset the initial downfall. The emotional highs of the relationship must be balanced somewhere. And three, the hurt from the truth will be less than discovery of the lie. If the relationship is doomed to its end I believe that preserving the relationship between my best friend and I would be a priority. All of this makes it optimal to speak the truth in this situation.
Though I do understand and utilize the potential of white lies, I would prefer that people be just as honest, if not more honest than I am. I will not appreciate the truth at the moments of inconvenience, but hindsight is always twenty-twenty.
You can always know what to expect from someone brutally honest. You know not what to expect for someone who is less so.
To have faith is to believe without knowing. With that, beliefs do not require evidence to be important. In many religions, the deity (or deities) show supposed signs, but there is no existential proof of their existence. Even without this, the people who believe in the deity and the values that they present, carry out the principles of their religion. If a belief that cannot be proven true can have such an impact on someone’s day to day life, it must carry some weight, value, significance.
This, of course, runs contrary to the interrogation scene depicted between Winston and O’Brien. With Winston’s faith faltering in the end, the faith can be seen as insignificant to the oppressive force of the Party. However, the very act of destroying this faith is emphasizes its importance. The Party sees it as such a viable threat that it devotes its manpower not to vaporize the individuals, but to break them down at a fundamental level. It is why the Party also attempts to control thought to the furthest extent that they can. Thought and faith both operate out of reach from the physical realm the Party controls. They are part of the Party’s last frontier. Believing in what is unknown, or what is not provable, would be a vital step towards standing against the Party. It is what made Winston dangerous to the Party. It is what made Winston notable.
With thirty seconds left on the shot clock during the last quarter, time begins to slowly tick down. Your team is down four points and even a lucky half-court shot won’t guarantee victory for your team. Must we surrender in these last few seconds? Is there a reason to exert extra effort into the last few moments that simply seem futile? Ironically, that feeling of futility and fruitlessness was conjured by none other than your own conscience. We wonder rhetorically what the point is in finishing up the game because in these last seconds, we trick ourselves into believing that trying to win in the face of imminent defeat is more shameful than it really is; we hate to see ourselves give our best and utterly fail so we can hide behind our excuse of “I wasn’t trying”.
But the point is that you have not lost. Those thirty seconds are still ticking down and the ball lies in your hands; the cheering and clamor of the crowd hasn’t stopped so why have you? The spectators on the bleachers didn’t walk out of the game in these thirty seconds and neither should you; they stay even for these last seconds because they believe you still have a chance of making an incredible play. If thousands of people from all across the stadium and at home watching the game through television have faith, then why do you give up yours?
Even against all odds, there is no reason to deliver anything short of your best effort against an indomitable opponent. For to stand idle is to, by default, acknowledge defeat and nothing can be worse than surrendering to the enemy. Surrendering implies that there was absolutely nothing one can do to attain even a miniscule chance for victory, which translates into a direct acknowledgement of inferiority. Attempting to resist, however, grants one a small window of opportunity to succeed and reveals that one has the integrity and potential to triumph, which is more threatening to the opponent than we could ever expect. Take Syme, Winston’s co-worker at the Ministry of Truth, as a prime example of the potency of having the capability and potential to successfully achieve victory. Syme’s extreme perceptiveness and vicious enforcement of the Party member’s orders demonstrated his astounding intelligence which, ironically, led to his eventual vaporization—solely as a result of the Party’s fear of his capabilities and not even his actions. They could not stand knowing that a man of such intellect exists and must eliminate all possibilities of formidable threats against them. Even the omnipotent Party members have fear which is why they rely on deceiving and manipulating the public in order to evoke the impression that resistance is futile. In other words, they need all their subordinates to believe that surrendering is the only option in order to maintain power.
But there’s always an option. Surrendering is a conscious choice—nothing can ever force you to give up. If surrendering is an automatic loss, then why not take the chance and risk everything for victory? At the very worst, a failed attempt is no worse than no attempt at all; there’s simply nothing to lose in trying to fight for what you firmly stand for. Perhaps surrendering may invoke pity from the victor in the case of a life-threatening scenario but would one rather live the rest of his/her life under eternal oppression instead? Winston should feel proud of committing thoughtcrime and seeking out the existence of the brotherhood to overthrow the Party. He risked everything to grasp the sweet taste of freedom and successfully swallowed a mouthful of liberty that no citizen in Oceania could ever dream to savor. Despite his eventual defeat, he was able to experience a momentary life of freedom that was worth more than eternal life as an oppressed Oceanian citizen.
Typically, the choice of whether certain risks should be taken is based on the greatness of the reward along with the probability of success. For Winston, his reward of freedom from tyranny is worth more than anything else in his world, if anything is left at all. If I was in Winston’s situation, I would have done nothing different. Of course, we all wish for happy endings in all the novels we read but I extremely admire George Orwell for portraying life in 1984 as capricious and unsympathetic as it really is. By choosing to rebel against the Party despite the overwhelming odds against me, I risk getting vaporized and severely crushed but if I was truly born into a world as corrupt and oppressed as Oceania, I wouldn’t want to have existed anyway.
"we hate to see ourselves give our best and utterly fail so we can hide behind our excuse of “I wasn’t trying'"
This line just really stood out to me and I really liked this line just because of how much it applies to me and how much I see/hear about it from other people. Great post overall, good job!
I really like your basketball reference, and of course the game isn't over until the backboard flashes red and the buzzer sounds. If some people gave up in those 30 seconds we would never witness acts of immortality such as Reggie Miller's 8 points in 9 seconds that vaulted him to a status of a legend.
However, there have been time, in games, or tests, where I scored poorly, and said "I wasn't trying". I was probably lying, but it does save the embarrassment and the explanation.
Most people in their lives at one point or another have told a sort of half-truth or “white lie” in order to protect someone’s feelings. In reality, is this hoax helping or hurting said person? Is it harmful or helpful?
Many would like to believe that they’re helping their friends when they subtly lie about their friend’s appearance in order to make them feel better about themselves, but sometimes they just end up hurting them more. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, then let me take you into the cliché scenario. You and your friend are about to go out to hang out with other people that you are interested in romantically. Your friend asks “How do I look?” and you know fully well that they don’t look too great, but you don’t want to offend them, so you just reply “You look good!” Because of this little lie, you just let your closest friend leave to go meet someone they are interested in, but they’re not looking the best they could be at the risk of offending your friend. You just allowed your friend to walk off the edge of this metaphoric cliff.
You might be asking yourself right now if you’re a bad friend even though you had good intentions. Truth is, that’s completely opinionated and I can’t answer that for yourself. You’d have to choose- would you rather offend your friend and demoralize them (albeit slightly) or let your friend go out in public on a social occasion and embarrass him or herself? For me, I would choose to blunt and honest. I feel that I would be doing a great injustice for my friend by not catching the problem early in order to avoid slightly offending them. I would also wish my friends to be more honest with me as well.
The scenario shows that it would be better to be aware of something that could trouble you rather than allow you to remain blinded by bliss. It would be better to be aware than to be left in the dark, no matter how much it might hurt to be informed. Ignorance is not always bliss so people should always try to be aware because it would lead to a better outcome than to remain ignorant.
Ugh. It had to be at least six hours. I can’t believe we sat in the car for six hours. The sun was still up and the sky was still bright when we left. Why can’t I feel my legs? Why is my mouth so dry? Why does my neck hurt when I feel try and turn left? How is it dark already?
“Sounds good, I’m sure the kids are hungry too-”
-Look who woke up.” She said as she turned her head and glanced over at me.
“What time is it?” I asked, one eye shut and the other just barely opened.
“It’s 12:10. How’d you like your nap?” She smiled, “hold on honey,
Are they opened at this time?...okay, okay. Yeah, alright.”
“Who was that mom?”
“We’re going to go eat right now. You’re hungry right?” she asked.
I groaned and slammed my head back against the seat cushion, slowly allowing my eyes to shut once again. As my mom pulled into the plaza, I let out a deep sigh, simply because it relieved me just a little bit from exhaustion.
“Alright boys, we’re here. Time to get off; walk around and stretch a little.”
“What time is it?” my friend asked.
My mom grinned, “12:30. Are you tired?”
“Wow, it’s already midnight?” I butted in.
“Isn’t 12:00 midnight?” My friend corrected me.
“Uhhh, no? 12:30 is midnight.”
“No it’s not. How much you wanna bet that it’s not.” He retorted.
“oh my god, watch, I’m going to ask my mom.” I told him as I ran over to my mom and asked with confidence, “Mom, 12:30 is midnight right?”
She laughed, “no, no, no, 12:00 is midnight.”
“No it’s not! 12:30 is midnight!” I grew furious. The realization that I might actually be wrong was killing me.
“Told you so.” My friend rubbed it in with a big smirk on his face which only angered me more.
“Both of you are just stupid! I’m older than you and mom you probably haven’t even learned it yet.” I told my friend. Then I turned to my mom, “Mom you don’t even go to school, you haven’t even learned anything. I learned this stuff at school, you didn’t.”
Sarcastically, she told me, “okay, okay, okay, yeah yeah you’re right.”
Everyone was against me, telling me I was wrong. I don’t even remember who told me that twelve thirty was midnight or how that was planted inside my head. I felt terrible. I started to doubt myself after my mom told me I was wrong. I knew that she. I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that my friend, who was two years younger than me, was smarter than me. My pride was on the line. The odds were against me. I didn’t have any evidence, any proof to prove them wrong. I didn’t have any support. How could I possibly continue to fight for what I believed when all I could hear was my friend rubbing his beliefs in my face, “I told you so. You’re wrong. You’re so stupid for even thinking that.” At that time, it was what I had believed my short, but entire life. My friend just came over and ripped it off my page. He treated my belief like it was an embarrassingly wrong answer that deserved to be repeatedly crossed off until a pitch dark dent was left in the paper.
How am I suppose to distinguish between fact and false information when the only evidence I have to believe is impalpable and only in my head? All I have to rely on is hope. Hope that I haven’t been duped repeatedly in my life. More than half of the things I so strongly believe in I haven’t experienced in person. Who am I to say that everything I know is true. I’m forced to believe so many things because of society. I agree with what I’m told and what I’m shown because all I know is what I’m told and shown; I have nothing that would push me against it, therefore by default, I accept it. Society tells me 12:00AM is midnight, I accept it. If I deny it, I’m just stupid, stubborn, and ignorant.
Interesting story, i enjoyed reading the post. It was entertaining and funny. Also i agree with the last paragraph that we believe what society tells us to believe.
I enjoyed reading your blog, you give a lot of images within your post, it makes me feel like i know exactly what you are doing, and it also engages the reader since it makes it so much more interesting! great post!
Hey Kevin, your story was what caught my eye. I thought it was interesting how you thought 12:30 was midnight and you fought for what you believed was true. And I totally agree that we believe what society wants us to believe; if society wanted us to believe 2 + 2 = 5, we would all do so.
The word "six hours" was what caught my eye. I remember every single time I went to North California from those two words. It's a six hour drive in a car- about.
Now I would say society does not have full say in what we believe in. No one really knows everything about our ways of seeing things, not even ourselves. That's why I say we are in part of deciding what each word means and how they are used. Society decides the meanings of words in a dictionary, but one person can influence society.
Your post had a resounding voice that was easy to keep-up with. It was also very interesting and easy to relate to.
Speaking from life experiences and knowing myself very well, I have been always prone to manipulation whether it be for good, bad or just plain stupid reasons. I manipulate myself on a daily basis to crank out my work that I need to turn in the next day even though I feel as if I am already on summer vacation, feel too lazy and just want to lie in bed doing absolutely “nada.”I know every senior out there to date has tried to keep themselves up that extra ten minutes before a final exam because they have put off studying till the last minute. That is commonly known as cramming but could also be called manipulation. Teens force themselves everyday to go that extra mile to stay awake doing their Artium Magister project even though they have had almost half a semester to get it done. This could be because of knowing if they don’t turn in this project they could fail the whole entire course. I also think teens manipulate themselves to get it done because they know it’s not only the right thing to do but it’s necessary to pass senior English if you want to have a bright future in college and an even brighter future after college.
The not so good things that can come from manipulation is peer pressure. Just today I kept telling myself that I had all this work to do for a class that needed to be finished by the end of the day and I was told I should get a head start on it during lunch and that’s what I ultimately thought I was going to do. Lunch time comes around and as I head to class my friend says he wants to go off campus to get something to eat and I told him I had a lot of work to do but he said we would be back with just enough time for me to get a little head start on my work. So, basically he talked me into it. I mean every kid has to eat and it was just me and him and I didn’t want to leave my friend having some, could call that feeling guilty but I would also consider that manipulation.
It’s always harder to stand up to your friends than people you really just don’t know or don’t care for. In point blank range or even from far away I know when manipulation is coming or when it hits me. It sometimes is a feeling of being used to do someone else’s biding for them.
Everybody’s subject to manipulation. Some people are more prone to be manipulated than others, but it practically happens to all of us. Not at the same time, of course, but sooner or later we all get manipulated.
Our own parents manipulate us. Of course they don’t manipulate us in a bad way but in just a way that could benefit our selves or the entire family. Take this for example. Our parents always say that we should learn things at a young age so that we could have a head start in life. Now I always remember fighting back and not wanting to do what I was told but they always found a way to get me to do what they wanted. For example, they would tell me that if I finished studying or doing my home work in a certain amount of time I would be able to go to “Toys r Us” or some place that I was really into when I was at a young age.
Thanks to the way life works and the beautiful aging process. I will soon be considered an legally an adult. When I was younger, I could not be manipulated that easily, but the older you get, the price of something that is worth to you doesn’t change. I am not saying my mom can still manipulate me to get all my school work done just so I could go to “Toys r Us” after. I am certainly much too old for that. I have obviously grown out of that place, and plus I know very well that getting work done is really a must and not a choice for me anymore.
I have lived life and have experienced things that have taught me lessons for better and worse because I have been manipulated in good ways and bad. I have learned now that some of the choices I made in the past were dumb and wrong, but just trying to fit in with my friends and peers was the only thing on my mind at that point in my life.
I was aware when I was being manipulated, but I still did the things which I eventually regret. Now, I am stronger and wiser and am filled with more knowledge then a person could ever have imagined.
I prefer people who are more honest than me. Although they might sometimes be brutally honest, I know that I will appreciate what they have really told in the long run. Even though I might not like or actually even hate what they have to say, it will always help me in the end. Also, someone who is completely honest with me regardless of the results can and will make me a stronger person. The truth will help me grow stronger as a person and help me prepare for the adult life. In the adult and professional world no will lie to spare hurt feeling anymore. If someone likes my professional artwork and desires to buy it, they will do so. However, if they dislike my work, passing on purchasing my work is the honest reality that I did not meet their needs, and I must be ready to face the truth. Also, if someone is honest with me all the time and they say that they like something that I do, I can feel genuinely proud of myself. Sometimes the people that are always truthful are usually the harder ones to please. For example, sometimes when people say they really like my artwork, I feel like they are just saying that to make me feel better. I don’t think that they really like it deep down inside and it sometimes makes me feel bad because I know that they are lying to me. I feel like they think I am weak and can’t handle the truth. I appreciate when people are truly honest with their answers when I ask them what they think about my artwork. I enjoy hearing people give their opinions on my artwork hoping what they tell me will help me improve my art skills. When people lie, it doesn’t help me one bit.
If my significant other were ever to cheat on me, I would want my best friend to tell me no matter how happy I am with that person. I would like to know sooner since I am already spending my valuable time with him. I want to know for sure that the person I am with is reliable and trustworthy. Although I might hate me friend at that moment, I know I will really have to thank her in a short while. I want to know immediately because I want to be able to find the right partner, instead of being with a jerk who doesn’t love me and can’t commit to our relationship. I wouldn’t want to waste my time with someone like that.
If it were vice versa, I would definitely tell my friend if her significant other were cheating on her even if she were happy. I know that she might not appreciate or be happy with what I do at that moment, but she may thank me later on. I have an innate feeling that she would eventually share her appreciation. I know that my friend wouldn’t be happy once she finds out, but I don’t want her to find out later because I know it will leave a bigger scar on her heart. She would be stuck in a relationship with someone who lies to her and I forbid that to happen to a friend. I would want someone who truly makes my friend happy because he genuinely cares for her with all his heart and is fully committed to her. I sincerely care want the best for her, and I believe a truthful and committed relationship will make her the most happy.
If you live a life filled with lies and you just accept them as the truth without any arguments, you are only causing your self to be weak, as for the other way around.Living a life with lies and acceptance of lies only causes weaknesses. Telling people something is good even though it is awful only weakens others because once they enter the real world, they may think everyone is nice and gentle with their feelings, but they will learn the hard way and they may not be able to handle it.
I totally agree that we will appreciate the truth because it will benefit us in the long run. I believe that we're simply lying to ourselves when we don't accept the truth. It's an accuse to get away with the problems we have to deal with. In the end, we eventually accept it. However, the truth will definitely help us grow stronger as a person. Good job!
I really enjoyed your blog this week, because I can really relate to what you are saying. I also hate it when people give you a compliment but they actually don't mean it. For us individuals, even though the truth may be considered harsh, it will eventually benefit us in the long run. Great job Iris, keep up the good work.
I agree living a life without truth only makes one weak.
When the person is finally confronted with the truth in the real world, it may be too harsh for that person to accept, leading to mental distress. It's really better for one to just accept the truth instead of learning it the hard way.
Hiding the truth from someone may not necessarily mean you'll be able to keep that person happy. Your decision in telling your friend that her "significant other" cheats on her (if that scenario does take place) is definitely an act of a true friend.
I disagree to a certain extent with respect to people being honest, but I respect your opinion. I really enjoyed your blog. Great Job!
I offer my opinion.
“The second book was better than the third book.”
People reject it.
“Oh, that’s stupid.”
I give up and just change my opinion to please them.
“Yeah, you’re right, the third book was better.”
Even though I don’t mean it, I agree with them to escape from an upcoming argument, and I probably won’t even have a comeback.
So why waste my energy on it?
But I realize that it does matter, my opinion matters. I’m not talking about irrelevant things like having a different opinion about a celebrity or a band. I mean more important things, the ones that matter to me. People can tell you that you’re a fool for believing in true love or heaven after death or for believing in God. But, we should fight for what we believe in and if it mattered to us in the first place, we will fight for it.
We must fight for what we believe in because it makes us who we are. People can reject it and tell us it’s “dumb,” but we have to protect it because it shapes our identity and our values in life. It doesn’t matter that it’s weird or quirky or different, all that matters is that it is important to us and we should fight for our beliefs even if society doesn’t accept it.
Because who would we be without our beliefs? We would just be drifting along with our lives with no real motivation or goal. Our beliefs keep us intact and whole and make us strive to live and to fight for what we believe in.
"There would be no passion in this world if we never had to fight for what we love."
I actually really enjoyed reading your blog. You had a modern feel to your post and I could feel your passion emanating through the words you used.
I agree that we should fight for what we believe in matter what people say. What we fight for shapes who we are.
There are three separate classes in Oceania: the Inner Party that is held at the top, the Outer Party as the middle class, and the Proles as the bottom class. Each class has their role in Oceania's government.
The Inner Party is known for its power over Oceania, and pretty much controls everything in Oceania. The Inner Party seems to be the most favorable choice, because they are able to get things that the people lower than them are unable to get. They rule with fear and the ability to vaporize anyone that opposes the party. Oceania is ruled by a totalitarian government under the rule of the Inner Party, who declare there are no rules to follow, yet everyone is threatened by their underlying rules of not defying the Party.
This is the most tempting party to join, but I wouldn’t want to be an Inner Party member. The members in the Inner Party are people who are heartless and care only about themselves, making them selfish.
The Outer Party are the people who work for the Inner Party, minions of the Inner Party that do whatever they say. The Outer Party members are mainly the ones that live in fear of being vaporized. They are said to be watched 24/7 through the telescreen, which instills fear into the members of the Outer Party, such as Winston. Living under constant surveillance is brutal because you don’t know when they are actually watching you or not and the idea of privacy is pretty much gone. Destroying the Outer Party members ability to socially talk with each other freely.
Being watched and living with fear, I wouldn’t want to be an Outer Party member, because I may go crazy with the thought of someone watching my every move every day and living a quiet life with no one to freely talk to.
The last class are the Proletarians, also known as the Proles. The lowest class in Oceania and are pretty much the working class and are the most ignorant people. All they do is work for the government and play the lottery all their lives. They live without any incentive to overthrow the government, even though they out number the Inner Party greatly. They live in poverty and they do not even suspect that they are being controlled. Despite being the lowest class, the Proles seem to be at ease compared to the Outer Party members, because of the lack of a telescreen and the suspecting eyes of the Inner Party. The Proles are the most unsuspecting class in Oceania, because they pose no threat to the Inner Party, due to their lack of knowledge. While leaving under no surveillance at all compared to the Outer Party members they have the most freedom. The problem is they are the living example of the slogan “Freedom is Slavery”.
Even thought with all these disadvantages of being a Prole, I would actually choose to live in that class. The main reason is the same as the reason for not being an Outer Party member, I wouldn't be able to stand being watched 24/7 my entire life. I would rather live like an ignorant Prole that is forced into labor everyday than be an Outer Party member.
If you recall from the second part of the book, the "BOOK" outlined that in revolutions, the only real change is that a portion of the middle class displaces the upper class, with the help of the lower class. One thing to note is that though you may feel free, you may still be used by the middle class just as the middle class may be used by the upper class.
I'd like to be a prole too,
excellect, i believe the inner party would soon realized that it is stupid to ignore prole.
if you like, join me, the league of prole,
let's teach them a lession
Your Blog is interesting,
i read it again
your thinking actually add something to my mind, yes, inner party member must deal with dark benefit-related society.
it is ugly in memtal.
you actually explain what party member would face in detain
I’m not like the most. I’ll notice if someone if trying to move me, but nobody notices when I move them. It’s kind of like a ninja’s 6th sense telling them that there’s an assassin behind them. I know it’s there instantly. I’’ notice the simplest of words and phrases leading into the obligation of me saying, “I’ll do it for you” or “Let me help you with that”.
Regardless, I’ll still be the one who says those things each time. I've always had a tough time saying, “No”. My default response has always been a solid “yes”. I use the response more often than sometimes. I’m the vacuum cleaner who is constantly cleaning up another’s mess.
And yet, I never complain.
It’s like I’m programmed to automatically accept that people will manipulate me. It wouldn't hurt as much, if the person didn't have to ask for help in such an impolite way. That’s something I can say yes to.
I can’t say that I haven’t used manipulation to my benefit. I wish I could, but sadly the 6th sense of detecting manipulation also gives me the power to makes others bend backwards. It’s not even that impressive magic trick. All you need to do is act stupid and throw words to skew the conversation and way of thinking in your favor. I will purposely act stupid about something, just to manipulate information out of someone.
I wish I could stop. I really want to be rid of it. It’s another idea that really defines what “ignorance is strength” means. If I was ignorant to the 6th sense, I wouldn't be hurt by the idea that others have to manipulate me into helping them. I would be ignorant to the ways of manipulation working in my favor.
In a way, I wish ignorance was my best friend.
Wow, truly, i find myself in the exact same situation.
It's tough being the person that always says "yes" to everyone's request. I feel that people are manipulating me to do these things, but at the same time, I can't say "no" as well.
I wish I was more ignorant about some of my actions. Interesting to read about someone else in the same situation i'm in. Thanks for the read!
I have to agree with what you said in this blog, you abide by the Napoletan mentality. You don't seem to really trust everybody, and you know when they're up to something.
I thought I was the same way, until recently. Sometimes the truly unexpected things happen to you. I hope you think back to this blog and think "Wow, what Michaele was saying is true."
I enjoyed your blog, and thank you for all the great work for the second period Slytherin group.
Even though your blog is short that doesn't mean your blog is bad,
I really like someone who think that way,
i don't mean i want to make use of you,
but, i did like to make friend with those who treat me as a friend only because he would like to speak and spend time with me, rather than ultilize me
as what dazy said, she would like her daughter to be as a beautiful fool, maybe ignorance is a way to the joy XD
Honesty is the best policy.
To the originator of this saying, you are wrong.
Honesty is so emphasized in our society and yet, we use it as a barrier to inflict something potentially hurtful without receiving any in return. Or we condemn a person for being honest because we disapprove of their action. Honesty has fallen to a point where when a person says “Honestly…” or “To be honest…” the emotion you feel isn’t curiosity, but the dread of some negative comment. With so many negative effects of honesty, it makes one question whether the burden of knowledge, of truth is worthwhile.
But although honesty is not the best nor the most popular policy it is still the right policy, for ignorance and deception are not substitutes for honesty. When a storm comes batten down the hatches, don’t pretend it’s not coming or that it’s not there. There is no bliss in ignorance, only ignorance. Numbing the pain doesn’t make it any less real or any less there. I am still being hurt, even if I don’t know it.
“The truth hurts, a lie’s worse” – Broken Strings by James Morrison
Regardless of the fact that I am ignorant of the deception, unfaithfulness, or whatever the case may be. For you, my friend, to not inform me of this is a betrayal on your part. You abandoned me. You knew that I should be saved and yet you didn’t save me. Because you thought I would be happier. Because you thought it would be better. Because you thought I couldn’t handle the truth.
And yet that is why I have you, my friend. I may not be able to handle the truth but I have you my friend to support me to give me the courage to face reality. And just as I would not deprive you from the truth, don’t deny it from me.
I like how you say that honesty is the "right" policy, and not the best one. It makes so much sense. You also make a great point about how "honestly..." comes with a bad connotation in conversations. Very well thought out, loved it!
I like your starting off with a statement and then saying "to the originator of this saying, you are wrong."
I agree one is "still being hurt" even when one doesn't know the truth (neat quote to connect to your view).
The last two paragraphs were really nice, spelling out the way a true friend should be (I like how you used "my friend").
In English we were taught that conforming to society is bad. We read so many books telling us to break free from social norms and to find ourselves. So naturally, we would like to think that through such teachings, we’re no longer susceptible to societal manipulation, right? Wrong.
We’re always being manipulated by society, even when we aren’t aware of it. The reason for this is that manipulation isn’t always a bad thing. The phrase “susceptible to manipulation” has, in our society, been perverted like friendship in 1984. It in itself shouldn’t have a negative connotation, but because we’re brought up learning and reading about the dangers of it, we forget the positives it could bring to society.
It helps us differentiate between right and wrong, good and bad. It keeps our morality in check, preventing us from murder, war, and so on. It’s just our job to determine whether or not we should follow these guidelines set upon us.
This brings me to honesty. I would prefer if people would be more honest. When I think of a “perfect world” I think that honesty is key. With everything out on the table to see, I would be able to determine how to act. No sugar coating, no alteration, and just straight truth. Only then, I believe, would negative manipulation end. When people know the truth, we can differentiate between what we perceive as good and bad.
If there were no hope in winning, in all honesty, I would stop fighting. As shameful as it may sound, I believe in fighting another day. If I would inevitably lose, what sense is there to keep fighting? Had I lived in 1984’s society, I would probably be a quite rebel, waiting to fight under the right circumstances. What positives would come out of risking my own well being for something that would never happen? If there were, however, even small chance at victory, I would then risk myself. The very hope and possibility of victory would be enough to encourage me.
I don't know how it would be possible for us to know it when are being manipulated. I think it's very possible that we are living in a society where there are much more lies than truth/honesty.
i agree with in in the sense that when there's no hope, there's no motivation.
Good Job! It was a great post; I enjoyed reading it!
I love how you put such perpendicular forms of viewing things into a very parallel topic. Honesty and manipulation don't normally tie into each other, but your standpoint in their symbiotic relationship really helps you bring your point upfront.
I really enjoyed reading your post. They way you tied in the two prompts were amazing and it was really well written. My favorite was what you said at the end, "the very hope and possibility of victory would be enough to encourage me."Great philosophy and I agree with it 100%. Great post and keep up the good work!
Are you lying?
This life is full of people, people who become your friend, people who become your enemy, and people who have no business in your life because they don't even know you. Its unavoidable to meet new people, unless you live under a rock. You go out and you interact with different individuals. All different kinds of people. Kind, modest, mean, stubborn, cruel, polite, its endless. Throughout your life you find the right people. You let them into your life and accept them. You may have friends that are all the same race, or multiple friends with mixed races, but all that matters to you, it what's on the inside. You look for their character. Everything seems to just fade away afterwards. You don’t care about their appearance, or anything like that, you just want to talk and be with what's on the inside of them. But, eventually, disaster strikes. And you find out curious and suspicious thing about them, things that you ever regret knowing about them. But it's too late, you know, and unless you have a Neuralyzer from Men In Black, then you're out of luck, your stuck with that knowledge of them, and it will never be erased from your memory.
Now there have been several times in our lives that we have lied. It’s a common thing, it’s a little sin that seem to be contradicting itself. We go on living our lives with little tiny lies. But, I feel that some of the people I know lie to me. And yes, you will be lied to. Its unavoidable. It's like breathing, you and every other person on this earth does it. But I feel that if you lie to me and I'm unaware of it, then fine, you fooled me. But If I know that you lied to me and I'm aware that what you said is not true, I'll be very unhappy. But on the other hand, you may never know if I ever lie to you. It terrible for the most part of you find out the truth not from your friend, but from someone else. It seems that is the worst thing imaginable. They you feel like you were like some sort of game, let's see how far we can play with this fool. And people end up not being friends with each other. Trust, and the presence of trust in your life disappears, you will never feel like ever trusting anyone again if you are lied to way too much.
What honesty really means to us?
We all build our friendships or relationships on honesty, yet, are we ever really honest?
Actually we build everything on honesty, we revolve around honesty.
People prefer others to be more honest or less honest or just as honest as you are.
People ask someone to be more honest but end up being hurt because they were too honest; or they want them to be less honest; and get hurt with the fact that whomever they were talking too wasn’t honest enough.
Honesty is a delicate word that should be handled carefully yet we throw it around as if it’s really nothing but just a word…kind of like how we throw the word love around now days.
We all just believe what is given to us and never really think otherwise, we swallow what’s given us and never question what if, or how come, or why is it like that?
“Nothing in this world is harder than speaking the truth, nothing easier than flattery.”
― Fyodor Dostoyevsky
“If you do not tell the truth about yourself you cannot tell it about other people.”
― Virginia Woolf
When we tell someone we trust them, you are expecting to tell the truth and the HONEST truth, but we don’t. I’d rather have someone who is just as honest as me then being more or less.
I know it’s weird because people always want someone to be more honest with them…but really think about it…
Do you really want someone’s true and honest opinion or hear something to its fullest extent?
I know that I don’t because I don’t want to end up being hurt. And see that’s the thing, people get honesty mixed up with being plain out rude. Also, I don’t want someone to be so honest with me that they end up ruining something that I wish I have never had known.
Then there’s the people who are less honest that leave out some pretty important things or they lack so much honesty that I can never learn to trust them therefore I end up not being friends with them. Shallow, I know. But, I do want to know that I can have someone be honest with me to an extent. I’d rather have someone tell me as much as I would tell them because that’s just the right balance.
We value truth so much because without it, everything seems too just go wrong. That’s why we want honesty.
It’s a fundamental part of life, how we all want something scary and we all want the intensity but we don’t want the downfall of it. It’s how we are and how we function.
I think we have to know about ourselves though and about our hearts and know what we’re okay with and what we’re not okay with because with that we can then finally give out honesty and receive honesty without getting hurt.
I’m still learning about myself though, this is why I prefer to have someone be just as honest with me as I with them because I’m just not ready to face the whole truth yet. I’m not ready to get hurt or get angry over something.
“Remember that wherever your heart is, there you will find your treasure.”
― Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist
I enjoyed the first half of your post. You made a very valid point that honesty is thrown around too much these days. And I liked the quotes you used too. However the second half makes me wonder, are you okay with living a lie, as long as you're happy?
Before I answer mine, Let us play a game;
Let us find out your possible future~
Would you rather be a(n):
I: Inner party member
II: Outer party member
Sounds like you already chose which one you should be
So keep playing, do not let those points get in the way of your thinking.
I Would you have the tendency to rebel?
a) Yes(15 pt)
b) No(85 pt)
II Personal goal and reality situation,
- Which one is more important?
b) Personal goal (25pt)
III Achievement and Happiness
- your balance points to which side?
IV If you have to choose one, would you rather betray yourself or other people
- ( not your family & friends)?
b) Other people (90pt)
Calculate how many points you get
Please go to the correct section, do not just read these by normal order.
You chose to be an inner party member,
If you get 355, whether what you choose, you mind will eventually merge to the party’s perspective, you act exactly like an inner-party member. You spend your whole life trying to do something benefit for yourself and party, and your family, but you never get out of this circle. You have too much money to spend even though you are not so busy. You feel somehow your heart lost a part, but you never want those things come out of your mind. Anyway, your live a pretty reasonable life.
If you get 45, you must be an intelligent people who not only work like an inner-party member, but also store power for one day you can change the whole system to whatever you think is right. You will be a great man who would be list on the history textbook; however, you are also a tragic man who is too intelligent to lose its human feature. You are always alone and never satisfy on what you are doing, as time goes by, you lost your patient; finally, one day, you plan is found by others, and you lost everything (Goldstein for example).
If you get any points between 45 and 355, you are likely O’Brien. Your life is just the same as what other people have. There is nothing special for me to point out. You may gain power or fall out of the party, but either way, your life is not extreme, but normal.
If you finished, feel free to skip other two sections. And read the last section
You chose to be an outer party member,
If you get 355 points, you are pretty much an ordinary person, you just do what you are told to do, and go back enjoy with your family. You do not need to worry about anything since party will automatically solve your trouble. Wonderful world isn’t it?
If you get 45 points, you are a bad party member, you would like to rebel, just like Winston, you want to rebel, but you never know how to. Therefore, that strong inner conflict will drive you crazy, you may be found as a party’s enemy and punished for party security. Your life is somewhere between normal and unhappy, you may worry about what would happen tomorrow, and seek for some change. However, usually, the resolution might not be a good thing.
If you get anywhere between 45 and 355, you like your party, and the party gives you many benefits. You do not want anything other than your current life because either you satisfy about it or do not want to that the risk. You believe your party, even though there are no any evident why you should believe in it. Sometimes, you just do not care that much things, you just life a happy life, and that seems pretty good for you
If you finished, feel free to skip other two sections. And read the last section
*You chose to be a Prole*,
If you get 355 points, you live a peaceful life, no one is going to get into your own lifestyle, you can sing and play with your friends every day. However, your dinner may only half piece of bread; you cannot get any luxury because you are poor. Hunger and illness would visit you frequently, until you cannot hold it and die miserably
If you get 45 points, you are a rebellion hero in prole area, everybody know your name and would rather join your secret group that prepare for the rebellion. You have a fulfill life since you have an actual goal to obtain. Poor life cannot stop you and your fellows, the rebellion would have a great possible to succeed. You would secretly buy some book to study, make your own guitar out of broken wood, you are an intelligent person, but sometimes, you may force to choose in some impossible situation, your life will be troublesome, but that trouble make your tough and stranger. It is a legendary life.
If you get anywhere between 45 and 355, you would have the most enjoyable life than anybody else. You have freedom to do whatever you want, and you may achieve it by your hard working. Your life may change from poor to somewhere between rich and poor, you are not rich like inner party member, but you are happier than those rich people are. You can sing everywhere you want and have a romantic love with your lover, which is the best thing in a person’s life.
If you finished, feel free to skip other two sections. And read the last section
To be honest, my answer to Feraco’s question is always Prole, I do not completely agree with him because if it is a matter of perspective, then doing evil things and destroy the world would be some kind of justice according to their background. And that would never be a good things for us. After all, we should never walk through our life by things around us; we should walk through our life by our own well.
Have you ever think about your life, your existence, or your will? What is the point for us to live our life? If we are living a life belongs to ourselves, then we should not complain about the choice we made. If you choose a way lie in front of you, even that choice is wrong, that choice means something to you------ it means the failure and the success that made of your failure. And this process is called growth, improvement and advancement. We should enjoy our own life, not those additional decoration that skipping by your shoulder.
You want money, but what could that money bring you, you want power, but what could those powers bring you. At the end, the only thing that makes you enjoy is the life existed as form of memories storing in your mind. Relationships that connected you to other would be one of those too. Any failure, success, trust, betray, rich, and poor….etc would be part of your lovely life. You will be surprised that how colorful your life is instead of only white. A picture with only White would leave us nothing, but a colorful picture would attract our mind and make us enjoy about it.
And that is all I want to say today. I finished this blog while listening classical music; it is a peaceful yet meaningful parts of my life.
and that is the first time i play with blog, have fun everybody, have fun, myself
It is indeed about the matter of perspective. I don’t think perspective justifies people’s action but it leads you to understand it, to let you know the “how” as well as the “why”. I choose InnerParty member, not mainly because I agree with their actions, but for their understanding of the world, their perspectives are interesting. And yet they are as free as the Prole while Prole is just as ignorant as an animal. And we still have tons of people want to be them. It is the matter of perspective. You guys see Prole as someone who can possess a happy life without worrying about oppression because he doesn’t know he is being oppressed. He is able to express himself freely, basically to do whatever he wants. On a different perspective, Prole is , excuse my language here, nothing. They don’t understand the world. They are unconscious about their situation and yet still hold on to a false hope. They have nothing…
Ignorance is Strength…
However, I really like your creative post this week. Though I totally skipped the game and just moved to the last section, I can still clearly see your message. Wonderfully done!
Hi Katie Q,
Yes, i cannot completely disagree with you, all your said is right expect, for one thing. Don't belittle those proles, whatever how ignorance they are, there must be one who can read things from nothing. If there is some kind of resist power, then that resist power would always become that small hope of counter power, which is great.
thanks for your reply i am appreciated
Wow that was a really creative start. Way to think outside the box!
Your creativity and humor finally kicked in (post transformation!).
Cute little assessment.
I think I ended up being a prole with the most enjoyable life (pretty cool for me).
What did YOU end up being (which type of Prole)?
Your quote that "you will be surprised that how colorful your life is instead of only white. A picture with only White would leave us nothing, but a colorful picture would attract our mind and make us enjoy about it" was beautiful.
wow, i am kind of weird person,
and i tested myself,
but i mostly choose the minority one,
the reason why i didn't say what kind of prole I am
is because i wanted to be that "45" one
but i am not totally sure about myself whether i can gave up people around me.
it is a struggle
it truely is
Sup Simon, I really liked the little quiz/game that you put in there, it was what caught my eye.
The start of your blog caught my eye. It is very interesting and I really liked the way how you transitioned the quiz into your blog.
I can strongly say that I am susceptible to manipulation. I can sense that I am being used seconds before it even happens.
Situations like these happen every day. Take yesterday for example.
Our teacher in one period decided to give her students the whole period to complete their homework. I already finished my work, so I unzip the front pocket of my backpack, take out my earphones, plug them in my ear, and the world of Economics disappears, replaced with the wonders of Pandora.
A classmate walks back into the classroom, slowly heading towards where I was sitting. She stops right in front of my desk. I do not look up, focusing on my other homework.
"Did we have to do Spanish workbook yesterday?"
The trap was set. I already knew what she was going to respond if I responded "yes" to her question. The girl and I never talk to each other, whether in this period or the next, but it is clear that we acknowledge the presence of each other. However, she probably only knew me by my face, not by my name, which was why I did not receive a greeting.
"Yes," I responded. I take the earphones from my ear. There is more coming from her and it is apparent that she has already invaded the privacy I so desired for the remaining twenty minutes of the period.
"Can I see your paper?"
My mind inside screamed, "No! Do it yourself," but what came out of my lips was, "Yeah."
I have given up standing up to those who have used me as a homework asset or anything of the sort because I did not want to be the type of person who would say no. However, after handing over the paper(s), I would always feel a sense of regret. Why couldn't I just say no? In my heart, I did not want to let someone copy my work, especially to someone I did not know and someone that did not address me by my name. It was work where I had spend hours trying to find the answers. It was as if I helped my classmate save many hours of her day at the expense of mine.
After experiencing this twice from the same person, I do not want to feel this sense of regret ever again. If "no" is the answer I have to give then I shall give it with pride. Besides, it is never too late to try.
I really liked how you said "the world of Economics disappears, replaced with the wonders of Pandora." I can relate whole heartedly because that is my "goto" also. When it comes to the blog as a whole, I thought it was great how honest you are about handing over homework. I know how hard it is to say no, and it is usually not a word I use often either, but it is good to know you won't be handing it over anytime soon.
I think we all are manipulating and being manipulated. Each time we talk to someone we are normally changing their course of action. Whenever we get hungry, we change our mind about working to go eat. By saying "Hi" to someone we force a smile, but say "bye" we force a sense of sorrow (or maybe joy to someone we hate). So your not the only one. Just remember who you are, and be proud of her, Then the manipulation won't be as bad. Maybe you'll be able to stay true to yourself.
“All the world is made of faith, trust, and pixie dust” - J.M. Barrie
The concept of faith is to believe in something that cannot bet proven yet. Therefore without proof it is almost natural to lose faith. But faith can be a driving force in life. Faith can push someone to the extreme, especially in cases where someone has to defend it. The only way to keep faith, is to believe that someday there will be proof enough for the claim to be proven.
However, in Oceania's case, it's very difficult to have faith in something or someone. The Party has complete control over of all thought. Therefore if O'Brien says 2+2=5, then Winston has no way of disproving it, and Winston has no way of proving 2+2=4 either. Unfortunately, O'Brien is speaking the truth. The idea of 2+2 is thought early on, there is a proof which actually proves it. However in Oceania, there is nothing like that. The leaders can destroy or create evidence as they see fit. Which basically means they can crush faith at will.
Humans are huge hypocrites. There's nothing more to it than that. People really shouldn't expect more out of people than they expect out of themselves, but they do. I would prefer people to be more honest than me, but that isn't realistic. Honestly is a matter of condition. It is impossible for someone to be completely honest all the time. I really hate using this but, “men are only as faithful as their options”. That quote by Chris Rock, shows immensely towards what happens not only to men, but also women when backed into a corner. There is no possible way to measure how honest someone can be. There is no honestly gauge that magically fills up. The truth is that some people are more honest in one certain situation than another. So while I would like for everyone to be more honest than me, I know most likely, they'll be honest to a certain degree, and I accept that.
As a child, I would believe in Santa Claus or Harry Potter. Every single Christmas I would look to see if Santa had brought me any present, every single summer, I would wait for my letter of admissions to Hogwarts. Santa never gave me any presents, and my letter never came. Soon, I stopped believing in it. Belief is closely related to faith. The end result is similar, and faith and belief are interchangeable. They bring hope, but ultimately, they can bring the worst hurt. After being let down by someone so many times, one must start thinking that he can't trust him, that he can't believe him. Beliefs must have some sort truth in order to be beliefs. Once they are proved, or disproved, they become either fact or fiction.
It's a terrible thing to believe in a fake thing. Does it mean that it isn't meaningful? No, however if it's fake why believe in it. To believe in something fake, you set yourself up for disappointment and hurt. Much like for the proles in 1984, who really don't have anything to believe in, if we believe in falsity, we end up being an illusion. Living one, breathing one, walking one.
“None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free”.
-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Will you keep fighting the good fight if you know you have no hope of winning?
All my life I have been a good arguer. I have been able to turn fights around in one slick move. Every time I get into an argument either with my mother or girlfriend even friends I tend to get what one person says and turn it against them.
My main thing is comparing what one person does to another. For example if my sister does something I would simply say how would you like it if I did this and that. Though it may be an old move I use it like a charm.
This in mind I have four sisters in which three are older then me. Also I have a mother so pretty much I am in a house in which I am surrounded by women. This being said I have a very difficult house life to live. Girls have a knack for starting arguments over the craziest things.
"Who used my curling iron?"
Who took my makeup?"
Blah blah blah
Its a never ending story of arguments and problems. I mean my family isn't dis functional nor crazy but when you put a lot of women together you are bound to have problems especially on certain weeks of the months. Though my sisters fight each other a lot they still tend to bring me into the conversation and all the sudden I am in the middle of it. Though I can easily defend myself in most arguments I have learned that there is no winning when it comes to arguing with women. That is why sometimes I just let it go. Instead of fighting an un- winnable fight I just accept the lose not because I am unwilling to fight but because there is somewhat no point as no matter what I say will help me out. Instead I help myself in the long run and live to fight another day.
Roll on floor laughing...Robert,
I totally LOVE this post. Out of all the serious posts, this one just made my day! Yes, you cannot win any arguments with any women. And Yes, we argue about the craziest thing ever.
I am glad your sister have you as brother. And your girlfriend has you as boyfriend. Because not many people understand, girls tend to be illogical at times, and yes at times of month!
Thank you for writing something so awesome that is actually the highlight of my week. With all the love, keep on fighting on everything else, but definitely not women.
Yo, Puffer, why you so cool! Because you know how to Huffle!
Those with too much to reveal, hide behind a false character.
Having nothing to lose is just a saying, it is rarely proven right. The only ones who do take a risk or their lives and show they had it better where they’ll be at. Those are the people who live in suffering, neglect, fear, and solitude.
This is about those who can’t afford the risk of their own lives. The heroes who can’t win unless fought with an anonymous power. I take an example from the 18th century, when colonists would write in petition under the name Publis. Execution was the solution for rebels in the years of the American Revolution, now giving up everything when only written words had been given would be a waste of a good enthusiastic soldier. They had to hide behind a fake author to get away with the justice they were doing for the colonists.
They left a footprint.
Other than the liberals fighting in whispers for their independence, I take another example of doing the right thing but getting caught doing so is not an option. From the sci-fi crime show Dexter, a mild mannered man who works with Miami Metro Police as a blood spatter analyst, Dexter finds his prey. Dexter does not target the innocent but those he himself has proven guilty. With the right knowledge of the many loopholes in the justice system, he places fake trails to throw off his co-workers as he must wipe out the criminal himself. Dexter knows that there can be technicalities found in a trial to let a convicted man free. So, he acts on his own. When suspiciously, criminal disappears off the radar. Almost always Dexter knows to leave a proper placed line of bread crumbs for the police. Never knowing it was truly one of their own that had taken matters in his own hands and did what many would say is the right thing. Taking a life still means taking a life but Dexter only harms those who deserve it.
Dexter left his evidence.
From both these examples you can see that only the belief of something was left behind. Evidence must be left or how can the never before seen cause be credible. Beliefs can only stand on their own if given tangible evidence that it exists. Knowing something out there exists is proven when that belief has left its mark.
The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made. -Groucho Marx
Being honest is everything to me. I know that I have to answer with a yes; I want someone to be more honest than I am to them. To me, having trust with someone depends on how our future looks for the both of us. If you are talking about relationship wise definitely I would want my partner to be completely honest with me and if not more honest than I am. However there are exceptions. What exceptions though? Being honest is not always a good thing. From experience, sometimes it is best to be less honest but that doesn’t mean you should be less honest each time. Bending the rules on special occasions is acceptable. Even bending the rules, if someone is not honest then they are missing out on the whole point in life.
“Honesty and transparency make you vulnerable. Be honest and transparent anyway.”-Mother Teresa
Having a choice choosing being honest or completely living life as a liar is really up to me. From what I have been taught by my parents, I choose to live a pathway that is filled with nothing but honesty. Being honest has its ups and down. Upside is that you are living a full life without any lies and everything is free with nothing to tie you down. But the disadvantage is that anyone can take advantage of you and you will have no idea it hit you. Before answering what I would like for others to be when they are around me, more honest than I am, less honest than I am or honest as equally as I am, I gave this a lot of thought.
During the first semester, I had learned a lot from Siddhartha and Macbeth. One can be determined to find out their path and one can be too stubborn. That is what I have been doing. I went back to my past relationships to see what has been happening.
A big portion of my dating life has been a big joke. I have been cheated on countless number of times and this quote really speaks for me. I choose to be honest with my partner and it just made me vulnerable. This is all because I wanted my partner to be more honest than I am but I couldn’t see through the lies. The reason why I would want anyone to be more honest or equally honest as I am is because I won’t the same treatment and cut out the bull crap and live life to the fullest. Honesty is a rarity.
“People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built.”-Eleanor Roosevelt
With all the lies that I have been through, and how weak someone can be by just being honest, I still choose others to be just as honest as I am or more honest. Not only do I learn more about myself but I never have to worry about building up lies on top of lies to cover the last lie. Being honest and letting everything out takes off the weight on my shoulder. Don’t get me wrong though, not everything should be spoken but being honest is a good way to build up character. Others may learn a thing or two by being brave and honest not just to themselves but to others.
Hi Clarence. I agree with your belief that people should be honest to each other, even if it leaves them vulnerable. Dishonesty can destroy our perception of the world around us. If all people are honest, which is clearly not the case, they will trust each other more easily. Great post!
Everyday I play video games, and, like every day, I try to work out teamwork when placed in a team of five with four random people that I have never met before in my life. But most of the time, the other teammates do not listen to me, causing me to play “lone wolf” and try to beat the other team by myself. I have very bad memories of losing any kind of game ever since I've played with my older brother in any game (he was a poor sportsman, and probably still is today). It has scarred me to the point where I feel unsteady whenever I have to face him, or play cooperatively with him. And so, everyday I try to steel myself in any bad situations I’m in to take in all those consequences that come from it. This drives me to work out anything that gets in my way, even if fortune is not at my side.
Video games are also how I spend more than 10% of my day enraged by my team’s failure. Unfortunately, there is “me” in “team;” I make up part of that failure. So, I would have to try befriending all my teammates in my current match by helping tough situations they are in, and also see how much they can support me in return. This makes me act like their “brother in arms” who would make the best choice, with high survival chances, to deal any difficulties.
I have never been an abrasive person or a hero when I deal in any situations I have never faced before; therefore, I act like a “mirror.” I would be the kind of person I am as any one is with me because equal outcome is always the best effect from any situation. I have stepped in for “friend A” who dislikes “friend B” of mine, who secretly is attracted to “friend A” (and yes, it is pretty obvious “friend B” likes “friend A”). “Friend B” has always been unpleasant to everyone, even his friends, so why not do the same to him? Sure I do not want to be like the same person as him, but since I am just mirroring his kind of intent, does that make me just like him? (I won’t even end up like him when things get settled) Think about it, if someone can only speak one type of language, you would either need a translator or learn their language to commune with them. I’m trying to speak the same language that he can only speak. This applies to the many hardships I have faced with the many random people in my many game matches.
Beliefs have always been what makes people human. Beliefs have the power to change someone’s perspective in anything. Take Syme from 1984 for example; he is a very intelligent person. But if he started to be unfaithful to the Party, who knows what kind of damage he could do to Oceania. He had a high risk of being vaporized because of the very threat he can pose to the Party, even when he had a very patriotic, orthodox soul to the Party, but he never once thought anything bad about the Party. Although he never learned the truth behind the Party, the very reason why he stays faithful with the Party is what makes this “false” belief in the Party very important to Syme. Another example is the Bible. The people who read it believe that it has happened in the past, but these stories only exists in words, just as Charlemagne and Caesar. What people do not realize is the teachings from these stories that make it important, like King Solomon’s bargain for a split baby. So I choose to have beliefs, even when they can be proven false.
In every match I get placed into, I always believe I will be victorious.
I want to say I would keep fighting even after hope is lost.
I like to picture my self as a warrior in the middle of a losing battle with the few comrades I have left gathered around me leaping into the midst of danger hacking, swinging, ripping, tearing apart our enemies even after fatigue and exhaustion has worn away at our muscles. I want to be able to fight on. To lose all care and inhibition but I think my sense of self preservation is too strong. I think i'm just too selfish to be able to fight on after realizing the futility in fighting. I imagine my warrior self continuing the struggle and ignoring all rational thought.
To just give in to rage and emotion and fight until death for whats good and right.
In reality though I see my cowardly self. My self that analyzes the situation around me thinking too much and too long weighing the odds and realizing defeat is inevitable. In the real world I would break. The fear of losing would be to great and I would back down. I would retreat to safety and plot to fight another day and that might sound smart and logical but how do you win if you dont give it your all. What is the point in fighting if you aren't prepared and willing to fight to the death.
Loyalty and honesty are the two core values that I prize above all else. I am honest and loyal and I expect others to be the same way. Even though its kind of clichéd the cheating boyfriend/girlfriend example that was used in this blog is especially relevant to my life because its something that i've actually experienced my self.
My ex was actually cheating on me with one of my friends and the only reason I found out about it is because of my other friend. I'm extremely grateful to that friend for waking me up. I needed that disillusionment from some one who could help me prepare for it. Had my friend not told me, how long would I have gone thinking everything was alright? How many times would I have kissed her and hugged her so sure of the fact that I was the only one.
Until that day when I would have been dumped on the curb not knowing what happened. Instead of feeling lost and alone I had the chance to steel my self, raise that fortress around my heart and then be the first one to strike. Because of the honestly and loyalty my friend showed me I wasn't the one surprised or left on the curb.
Honesty pure blunt undiluted thats what I want.
It might hurt at first but its like taking a vaccine. Yeah the needle's sharp but it beats having small pox.
I think beliefs are inherently fictional. Beliefs are something you think and create in your mind they dont actually take a physical form. Morality for example isn't actually real you cant hear, see, touch, smell, or taste it.
In America most people believe in christianity and there fore have christian morals which come from the bible and the teachings of Jesus Christ. In the Middle East they believe in Islam and are taught from the Quran. These books teach two different beliefs and moralities but how do we know they're true? How do we know that Muhammed actually travelled back to Mecca and was Jesus Christ actually crucified? We can't know if any of these things actually happened and there fore we can't know if any of it is real.
All beliefs are fake and all beliefs are real. It is dependent on whether or not you believe in them.
Their importance is a different story. I still think all beliefs are important but they are important not because they are inherently important. They are important because expressing, understanding and experiencing different ideas and beliefs is important. It is important to be able to see other ideas and even have them question your own ideas.
It makes you stronger and wiser in any situation its still a good thing.
If your beliefs are challenged and you can stand up to the fire and no matter how shaken you become you still can hold on to your core beliefs you have just proven your resolve. If how ever you walk away and you think everything you have ever known was a lie then you have just taken a step to the truth and can continue trying to find your self which in the end will turn out right.
What defines friendship? Is honesty important in a friendship?
Everyone has a different perception of what friendship is so it’s really up to the person to determine whom he trust and whom he call a friend. Friends don’t necessarily have to tell you anything. Friends don’t necessarily have to trust you. Friends don’t necessarily have to treat you the same as you treat them. The choice you choose to make is what matters the most. If you've been a good friend, you should not be blamed for what goes wrong.
I am me. I don’t know what other people think and what they value in a friendship. Therefore, I trust people who give me advices or simply listen when I have to talk. When they give me advices, it shows that they’re actually thinking in my position. When they listen, it shows that they actually care about what I have to say. However, it hurts me though when I always listen and give advices. I also need a person whom I can rely on with my problems.
Conclusion: I prefer that my friends are as honest with me as I am with them. I can’t expect too much from the other side, for that the more hopes I have, the more disappointed I will become.
Relationships, in general, are built upon the foundation of honesty. How can you become friends with someone whom you don’t trust? If that’s the case, you’re simply pretending to be a friend. The most brutal thing is that sometimes, we don’t even realize which friends are pretentious and which friends are truthful. And after we find out the truth, how do we face the truth? The person, whom you called a friend, has been taking advantage of you the whole time. Or the person, whom you told a secret to, has betrayed you. There are many possibilities to what actions people can take in situations like these. For me, the easiest and fastest solution is to let go of the friendship and forgive them for being themselves. Truth hurts, so I would convince myself that they must have their own reasons behind their doings.
From my experiences, I find that I can be easily manipulated into doing what my friends expect me to do. I would be so sleepy, and yet I still choose to stay awake just to keep my friend company. I would be so screwed for my own test, and yet I still choose to help my friend study. I would be so busy, and yet I still choose to listen when my friend needs to talk. These simple things are what I do, and I don’t expect them to do any more than that.
I simply wish to be treated the same.
It's true that everyone has a different perspective on what a friendship between people should be, but they should also be reciprocating the relationship on par or about the same level. I agree when you said that relationships are "built upon the foundation of honesty."
I can see that you are a good friend.
Thank you for reading my blog. Thank you for thinking I'm a good friend!
I can easily tell if I am being manipulated or being taken advantage of. There are times when I stand up for myself and make sure I am not being manipulated. Other times I take other people’s orders knowing that I am being manipulated. Most times I don’t mind taking other people’s orders, depending on the situation and the mood I am.
I have a really close friend who likes to manipulate people. He is pretty good at it that most people don’t realize they are being manipulated. Sometimes we make jokes about the people he manipulated. It was funny at the beginning but there was a point when it was getting annoying, and I realized it wasn’t right. There were times when I was being manipulated by him but I ignored that I was being manipulated. Nowadays I started to stand up to myself more since there is a point where I can’t take it. I don’t mind being manipulated from time to time but if it’s something that continues I would probably do something about it.
If I was living in Oceania and realized that I was being manipulated and I was tired of being manipulated, I would probably rebel. I would probably do anything to stand up for myself and do something about it.
I will probably not keep fighting the good fight if I had no hope of winning. I need hope to keep fighting. I think it would be hard to do something without hope. All I need is a little hope to continue anything I do. That little hope could grow as time passes and motivate me to start the good fight.
In Oceania, people probably had a chance to rebel and succeed. All they need is hope and the desire of freedom. If they had hope then that would encourage them to take actions. They could not even try.
It’s always that tiny hope we hold on to, even when we already know the result would be unsatisfying. We find hope in something even when there is no hope to hold on to. We deny the truth when the reality is too harsh for us to take. We keep hoping and hoping that there is a bright side to all of this.
We are all afraid.
We shield ourselves in a web of lies and false hope. We have delicately woven that tiny hope inside us. It is a spark that scares away any hint of despair, doubt, lost, and desperation. It is this tiny hope that will keep us fighting on, because we are driven to avoid any pain, despair, and stress as much as possible. We held on to hope like how Winston hoped there was a brotherhood. Like many of us, Winston held onto his hope even when he knew the collapse of the party would never happen in his lifetime, yet he held on. He hoped that O’Brien was on the same side as him, he hoped the proles will one day bring down the party, and he hoped that somewhere out there Goldstein is still alive. Even with no hope of winning, we have to keep fighting on, because in the end, despair and terror will manifest us and slowly cause us to deteriorate as a person. Only hope can prevent despair, terror, desperation, and doubt from slowly manifesting us.
“When life gets you down do you wanna know what you’ve gotta do? … Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming.” – Dory, Finding Nemo
Our cocoon of lies and false of hope can only act as a cushion from the harsh side of reality. It can’t always shield us from everything, unless of course we become crazy and start hallucinating. As much as I like to live in a world where I build up myself, I think honesty and the reality of life is crucial for the development of trust, friendship, love, enlightenment, identity, independence, and experience. If people lied more than they told the truth, this world would be a very lonely and corrupt world. Everyone would be corrupt and fought only for themselves in order to survive in this world. We will only become as lowly as the animals. Without a tint of honesty, we will stop communicating with each other and the bond between people will slowly disintegrate.
I completely agree with you when you said "honesty and the reality of life is crucial for the development of trust, friendship, love, enlightenment, identity, independence, and experience." Without it, we wouldn't be who we are trying to become today. Great post and I like your Nemo quote.
Wow, I totally agree how you said that people find hope even when there's no hope in reality to hold onto. You're also right in how you said that the false hopes can only act like a cushion from reality. EVentually, it won't be enough. Good job on this blog!
Your first line hooked me already. I think it's true that we ARE afraid. Good post!
"Why are you always lying to me?"
"I don't know. Everyone lies. Don't worry, I lie to everyone."
"Dude, it's getting out of hand. And you're only lying to me. Even with the the small things, it's like you need to lie to me. What the [heck] man."
It's sad when you find out your closest friend lies behind your back. It's worse when your other friends are in it.
I always valued honestly, at least in a friendship, or relationship of any sort. But when someone forms a habit of lying, that's when things go downhill.
"Hey guys, I'm hosting a LAN party ..."
That is, until I found out. Then I'm bombarded with more lies. More pathetic lies.
"It wasn't supposed to be like this, you weren't suppose to find out."
Yea, that was literally said.
"I thought if I kept it quiet and you never found you, things would get better."
If anything, it got worse. So I left. What did I value more, a fake friendship or honesty? I chose the latter.
I realized that honestly is important in a friendship, that without it, there's no basis of a friendship and thus, no friendship whatsoever.
When I was hit with all those lies, I didn't know how to take it in. I was angry, I felt stupid, and most importantly, I felt weak. I opened up my vulnerable side, and basically got stabbed...plenty of times. At first I took it to myself and thought, if I talked about it, maybe he will stop lying. And maybe things will get better.
No, I was lying to myself. I was giving myself fake hope. A fake maybe. Things got worse. Everyone was in on it, everyone knew. They all decided to lie to me because it was "suppose to make me feel better." It just made everything worse.
So I just left. I went my own way. I rather walk alone but be around fake friendship; it's not worth my time. And after a month passed, I knew who my true friends were; I knew who wouldn't lie to me and be there for me.
Ironically, that liar is still a friend, and finally, he's understanding the importance of honesty too.
Harhar. Hello there!
Your blogs are always so short, but I like it that way. Your blog is very easy to read and yes, I can easily relate to what you wrote. It's nice that you are able to freely talk about your situations and its always great to use your own experiences to make your argument stronger.
“Honesty is the cruelest game of all, because not only can you hurt someone- and hurt them to the bone- you can feel self-righteous about it at the same time.” - Dave Van Ronk
Brutal honesty can hurt. But without honesty, an essential element of any friendship or relationship is missing. Without honesty, all of us would live in a world of suspicion, a world of mistrust, where we questioned every word others said to us. Still, while we do need to be truthful with others, we do not have the right to make others feel "less than" or disrespected. We must always try to convey our message with as minimal an amount of hurtful content as possible. I expect my friends and the people around me to be completely honest about everything, as I would be with them, but in a kind way.
Often the truth is not something we want to hear, but not hearing it is worse. Most of the time we are better off facing the ugly truth of something head-on than later suffering the consequences of not hearing it. A true friend will not worry about "hurting feelings" as much as he or she cares about helping. I am glad to say that I have just such a friend, although he could use a little more practice with how he words things.
From the beginning of senior year until the end of December last year, like the majority of high school seniors, I was writing my college applications and sending them out. It was not easy for me though. Throughout the whole writing process, I encountered numerous obstacles, from not knowing what to write about myself to making my work stand out from all the other thousands of personal statements. Many, many times I had to read and reread and revise my writing to make sure I was using correct grammar, which has always been something I struggled with. Rough draft after rough draft I wrote, not knowing if my work was actually good enough to submit or not. Finally, I decided to ask my friend to give me his opinion about what I had written, even though I was afraid to show him. He is a really good student who always gets good grades, and I was almost embarrassed to let him see my work. But I know he is an honest guy about everything, so I went ahead and asked. And I'm glad I did. Even though I spent countless hours on one of the essays, he didn't hesitate to tell me, “Man, James, I don't think this essay is going to get you in. It's pretty bad.” I have to admit that it stung when he said that, and true, he could have thought of a nicer way to say it, but at least he was being honest with me, and his intention was to help me. If he had told me that it was a decent essay when the truth was completely opposite, he would not have been being a good friend. Now, at least, I had the chance to fix it and make it better before turning it in. And my friend gave me advice on how to do it. To me, that's a lot better than not getting into a school because my friend was too afraid to tell me the truth.
There is a line between honesty and hurting others' feelings, though. But this problem is easily resolved by phrasing our words carefully. For example, although I was happy that my friend told me his honest opinion, he could have said “Well, James, I don't think your essay is at its full potential yet. I know you can do better than this,” and it would have landed a little easier. A simple twist of words can convey the same message, but in a completely different tone, which might affect the listener’s attitude.
All in all, without the honesty of the people around us, we cannot change to become better people. True friends are not just people who are trying to please you and make you feel good about yourself; instead, they are there to tell you the truth, guide you and help you to become a better person, and at the same time, stand by your side while you are overcoming those barriers. And although the truth can hurt, if what is said is coming from a place of caring, even a truth that stings can be ignored for the good that it does and the intention behind it.
I agree with you notion that the truth is usually best stated rather than hidden, I do caution for the cases where the truth, any version of the truth, would send the recipient over the edge. I would account for another factor, timing, for things you should consider, when revealing the truth.
If you know me, you will know for a fact that I am easily manipulated…and a quitter. Both qualities won’t serve me well if I were to be placed in Oceania today, in the position that Winston is in, because I will conform. I often find myself conforming to other people’s expectations rather than my own; I was hesitant to do my senior project on music, for then I wouldn’t conform…I would have strayed from the norm; the medical professions, the engineers, the accountants…the normal.
I am one of those people who often give in to things…when people ask if they can copy my homework, I always reluctantly say yes. If someone asks if I can lend them money, I usually, but reluctantly, say yes. I do not dare refuse, for I fear others. I am a coward, much like Winston is a coward. I fear being hated, I fear getting into fights (my fighting skills are pitiful; a fifth grader can beat me up). Therefore if I was told to love Big Brother, I would say yes. I fear vaporization.
You will hear me say this all too often; I am a quitter. If things don’t work out like I have imagined in my head, I quit. If I practice this song for an hour and seem to be getting nowhere, I quit. If I play a game for an hour and still suck at it, I quit.
I am a defeatist.
If I have no hope of winning, I would quit. If I was being interrogated and forced to confess, I would give in, whatever it takes…including going insane, and accepting that 2 + 2 = 5. I think that Winston held on for too long; I would have given up ages ago. In fact I would have given up in the cell…I mean, how can one man possibly hold up against the party? Rebellion means utter destruction of everything that you are and believe in…your soul. Rebellion means the death of the human inside you.
He saw it in her eyes
They wouldn't hide
Betrayal and her wicked lies
From a dying man
- Confessions, Cannibal Corpse
“Make them suffer
While they plead for cessation
Entirely demoralized and close to mass extinction
Damned to please supremacy
The reason for their martyrdom they will never know”
- Make them Suffer, Cannibal Corpse
This is why I fear being a Party member. You will have to accept these things as part of life; that this is how things should be. You will be reduced from humans to just lumps of meat programmed to do what you are to do; to love Big Brother, to love the Party. I conform too easily; I want a chance to not conform for once, to live for myself, not others. I want to be a prole. They are the only ones with human still inside them.
Even if I did live for myself, by the time I leave Room 101, I won’t be. I will be living for Big Brother.
I will love Big Brother, for I will have become a puppet.
Master of puppets.
(I have cut down my usage of ellipsis this time)
It is definitely good to be optimistic and believe in one's self to keep fighting, but it's more practical to be realistic and make smart decisions. I would definitely be a quitter as well, because why waste energy and time when I KNOW that I will fail? I agree with you that Winston should have given up ages ago; he pointlessly risked it all and in the end he lost it all for nothing.
regardless the contect, your blog is awesome,
and for the contect,
don't worry everyone will does it too,
one of the smart way to life is to know how to quit,
and one of the wisest way to do is to know how to pretend that you were "dead", even though you are actually sleeping
and sliding behind your enermy's brow
great job Calvin
I think that people need to be honest with each other. Without honesty people can never trust each other. Lies and deception can only lead to people being secretive around each other. People will never be able to truly open up to someone because there will always be that chance that they say something they should not have. Then it can ruin the trust that those people thought that they had between each other. When people are not completely honest with each other it leads to a false trust. People need to be as honest as possible with other people in order to have a true form of trust between them.
I feel that your friends deserve your honesty more than anyone else. If something happens to your friend and they do not know about it I think that they deserve to know about it and you should be a good enough friend to able to tell them and not keep secrets from your friends. Secrets are an easy way to keep your friends distant from you and to lose your friends completely. The only way people can be friends is if they feel that they have strong trust between the two of them. If people are to break that trust the entire friendship can break. Friendship is based off of trust and in order to have trust between them people need to be honest with each other.
Even when people feel they have a strong feeling of honesty they need to have a strong enough trust that they will not lie to each other even if they can without penalty. By lying to each other they manipulate the one that they lie to. They make that person feel that there is a trust when there is really no trust. People must be strong enough to be able to the truth to the ones they call their friends. They should not take advantage of what the other person thinks is trust even though it is just a manipulation of someone else’s trust. Trust is the most important thing in a friendship and people should never take advantage of it.
I totally agree with you. Honesty is necessary among true friends. We have to be honest if we want to have long relationship with our friends. I like your post. Good job!
From figure head rulers to the media to the guilt-tripping tactics of fervent students trying to sell those “healthy” fruit snacks, manipulation – whether of people or facts – is and has been a prevalent element of our world.
If you were to ask a few of my friends this question – whether or not I am someone who is easy to manipulate – I would predict with ninety-nine percent confidence that they would answer that I am not. A closer look at the situation, however, raises the question as to why they would answer so. This has little to with whether or not I am easy to manipulate, but more with the answerer’s motives. Saying that I am easy to manipulate, may lead the asker to take advantage of me and leave little for the answerer to gain off; on the other hand, falsely acting as my “protector” could potentially allow the answerer to get closer to me and use me even more freely than before.
In evaluating myself, I would say that I am relatively easy to manipulate because I am very honest and direct person. Unlike my more tactful (as well as deceptive and successful) peers, I tend to do things by the book even when doing so clearly does not benefit me. My pre-calculus teacher was a stickler for graphing. She instructed us to draw all graphs on our homework, even when the question simply asked us to match a graph to an equation. Two second problems ended up taking a minute or more because the graphs had to be drawn nicely. Being the obedient student I am, I faithfully put all the graphs on my homework, whereas many of my classmates found little shortcuts to take. Despite seeing that the precision and effort I was putting into mere homework assignments was not rewarding at all, I continued to make my sketches as the teacher willed it them to be.
Another instance of my easy-convincing, occurred the following year in my calculus class where we had to compile a packet of various problems we worked on throughout the semester. This required us to go back through our archives – which were very disorganized in many people’s cases – and find these assignments. Knowing this was coming, I had kept my assignments very organized and easily made my compilation. When a classmate found out, she urged me to share the list with everyone.
And I did. I sent a mass email to the whole class with a very detailed list ordered in two ways for their convenience and received replies of gratitude from a good fourth of my classmates.
I take pride in this kind of work; I take pride in being the student who appears to go beyond the expected but is really just doing the expected really well. It is this pride that makes me so easy to manipulate. When people want me to do something, they subtly praise this meticulous patience that I possess and in wanting to please and satiate my inner perfectionist, I jump to their call and help them out. Sometimes my work yielded response of praise and gratitude, other times the person expressed gratitude but later insulted me in some way. Regardless of the result, at its core, manipulation is manipulation.
When I began your post I knew immediately which question you decided to answer. It seems as though we talk about manipulative people rather often.
Ever since I have known you you have always been the one to actually complete the assignments. While that has always been very admirable, you've probably prioritized work over your health too often. Sometimes you need those shortcuts in order to maintain the balance between the two. Hopefully we can have a longer conversation during lunch about this Tim. Good job on this post!
Trust Me or Trust You?
If given a situation where I would have the option to learn the terrible truth from a companion or continue happily without knowing, I’d choose to continue without knowing.
Although I could discover what may not be pleasant from a friend, I’d much rather find out on my own. If “the shoe was on the other foot”, I wouldn’t tell my friend about what I know, because
what if he wouldn’t believe me?
And IF he believes me, that would give me the power to fill his head with anything I wanted, giving me power to control him.
I would not tell my friend about the truth, but I would urge him to find out on his own. I feel that the best way to find the truth is by finding it individually. It is the same concept as how we “know” that Julius Caesar existed, but never met/seen him. We only “know” this type of information, because we were told it was true.
In a parallel example, Oceania is TOLD that two and two make five.
Beliefs should have basis in reality to be important, BUT it does not require a basis in reality to be important.
To believe in something makes it reality in the person’s mind.
That being said, everything is true based on our individual perspectives.
As children we believed that Santa Claus was real. Therefore, we KNEW that he existed and he was the reason our presents came.
As children, we believed in the tooth fairy. Therefore, we KNEW that the tooth fairy was responsible for “buying our teeth.”
We can all make up stories. For example, did the story 1984 ACTUALLY happen?
It’s a fictional story, yet it has the power to change points of view.
It has the power to destroy friendships (Orwell’s situation), and It can justify contradicting statements like “Freedom is Slavery”.
In relation to the world of Oceania, I could adapt to the environment by making myself believe in loving Big Brother. I would choose to live happily and ignorantly over painfully and rebelliously. If I could believe that according to the “records” that Oceania is actually an improvement from the life before the Party took over, and that capitalists are no good dirty scumbags, I’d be able to live in Oceania happily as an Inner Party Member.
Although I could choose to not believe it and rebel, why would I waste my time trying that if the party will hurt me?
At the end of the book, Winston brings himself to love Big Brother. Is it all that bad? Did he really lose this battle? The story is about him, and in the end he is satisfied. Does 1984 really have a tragic/bad ending?
Myth/Sci-Fi – 2
6 March 2013
“So take some action.
Don't let the undertow grab hold.
It's sink or swim.
It's hit or miss.
- Sink or Swim – Falling in Reverse
Ah yes, the “good fight.” We fight for what we believe is worth fighting for, even when its certain that we're done. We face impending doom, and experience nightmares to win against that which is what we fight for. So what do we fight for, and more importantly, why do we fight for it?
“If there's no great glorious end to all this, if nothing we do matters... , then all that matters is what we do. 'Cause that's all there is. What we do. Now. Today. ”
Angel (Angel: The Series)
Sometimes we bid farewell to what we understand is our lives, but we fight the good fight, right?
“It's all the same thing. Fight the good fight, whichever way you can.”
We spend countless hours fighting for a world not for ourselves, but for the people who are going to be up next. Because like in 1984, the generations in front will only fight for injustice if they're not oblivious to it. They will only fight if they know what to fight against. They will never know what it's like until they sit themselves down and face it.
“The good fight, yeah? You never know until you've been tested. I get that now.”
- Doyle (Angel: The Series)
What we need to understand more than anything is that the world isn't going to lend itself to us without a fight. We are who we are because we fight. We get somewhere in life because we fought. Regardless of the fact that we thought the world was going to break us, we fought, because we had control of ourselves.
The good fight isn't just for a show about a vampire with a soul. Its not just for the powerful champion who we watch so entranced in our television screens. No, the good fight is way more than that. Its a good fight, and we have to sit there to see how it goes up in flames, for better or worse.
“Under a sky no longer blue, we bring a dawn long overdue.”
Re-Education (Through Labor) – Rise Against
We are an adamant species, one that doesn't give up or give in. We are the ones who sit around fighting for a change. Fighting for a duty within ourselves. We are filled with emotions, but one that shine's so heavily in this world is hope.
“Illyria: We cling to what is gone. Is there anything in this life but grief?
Wesley: There's love. There's hope - for some. There's hope that you'll find something worthy. That your life will lead you to some joy. That after everything, you can still be surprised.
Illyria:Is that enough? Is that enough to live for?”
- “Shells” (Angel: The Series)
I definitely agree, fighting makes us who we are. We can't just stand by and let the world lend itself to us, as you said, because if we do that, we can never expect any change. I totally agree with you on that! And you seem to really like this Angel: The Series stuff! They seem to provide lots of good insight! And I also really like what you mentioned about fighting not only for ourselves, but for who's coming next, the next generation. So true! The world we set up now is made for who comes after us; sort of like construction at school. There's always a year before another that has to deal with the frustrations of construction but the year directly after will reap the benefits of just being younger and having the goods. It upsets me but it's life! And life isn't always about us. Nice post!
Its one of my favorite shows. Haha. It has really shown me a lot of interesting morals and thoughts. Anyway, thanks for your comment. I'm glad you enjoyed my post! What an interesting metaphor you used. Our school's construction is a really big change, but its not for us, and that's just something we have to deal with. Its really interesting how each generation lays down a path for us so selflessly.
I will keep fighting the good fight even if I know I have no hope of winning. I will never sit back and be manipulated by others. I might fail to make a change if I keep fighting, but if I don't fight, it's impossible to make any change. Someone has to sacrifice himself/ herself in order to start a change.
Gabriel Prosser was a literate enslaved blacksmith in the 19th century. He knew that he had no hope of winning the slave rebellion in Richmond against the government, but he attempted to revolt with other twenty-five followers anyway. Prosser's uprising is noteworthy because of his bravery to make the first move toward abolishing slavery. His plan to revolt was quelled even before he put it into action, but he sacrificed his own life in order to influence others to finish what he had started.
Many times throughout the history and even nowadays, the reason that people kept fighting the good fight is not for the benefit in the present, but the future.
Sometimes, being honest to others is a hard thing. But I think best friends should be honest to each other. If I discover that my best friend's partner has betrayed him, I will tell him the truth even if I know that he will get hurt when he finds out the truth. I think it's better to suffer short term pain so that he will not suffer long term pain.
If I just warn his partner to stop betraying my friend and tell her how much my friend values her, she might stop betraying my friend in short term, but in the future, she might continues to be unfaithful. Ruining one's credibility is like driving nails into a piece of wood; even if you remove the nails from the wood, there are holes left behind. In a happy and stable relationship, betrayal cannot exist. If my significant other betrays me, I want my best friend to tell me the truth for the same reason.
I like your blog. I admire the fact that you would keep on fighting till the death even after you know you've lost. I wish I could be like that but I know my self too well to think that I could keep fighting even after defeat.
What a great example using Gabriel Prosser. I have never even heard of him but even so, I find his sacrifice extremely noble. This also reminds me of Elizabeth Cady Stanton who advocated fervently for women's rights but never got to see the rewards of her efforts. Indeed, sometimes it takes more than a lifetime to succeed but the efforts are never in vain. With regards to honesty, it is definitely a razor double-edged sword but I cannot agree with you more. The truth can be painful but the pain is inevitable anyway. Great post and keep it up.
Hey Justin, I really liked your post - it was fun to read. I like how you cope with loss rather than let it get the best of you.
First semester the question popped up. And to my pleasure, it popped up a whole bunch of times.
“How do you face that which cannot be defeated?”
I always thought I was a fighter kind of gal. Just like my dad. Except he's not a gal.
I always felt like it was appropriate to go against the system, to be against the flow, to feel that the whole world is evil and wrong, like it's me against the world, and I could always handle ANY tough situation with my sword I keep by my bed.
But when it came to actual fighting, an actual “good fight”, I found that I had already given up. I didn't even realize it. My dad was the one who let me know.
I was always fully convinced that I had the most determined and violently passionate spirit for a fight when it came down to it, until it actually came down to it.
I found that not all fights require swords.
I found out that some fights are so low-key that you sometimes can't even see that it's happening.
But it is.
You really do grow up in this world, even after one semester.
The biggest fight to face, I'd say, is in oneself.
The most powerfully influential enemy who knows you like no one else is yourself. And how do you know if you win? Can you even?
The easy answer to the question of how you'd face something that seems unbeatable, to me in my one-semester-younger self was just do it. Just go, fight, give the beast a hard time before you go down, fight because you're still winning until you lose, you don't stop living until you die.
But now, when it came time to put up a good fight for the good fight, I found out that I was sitting on the side lines pretending to be in the game. Pretending that I was losing already without even looking at the field.
When we have no hope of winning, it strikes us a lot harder than it sounds.
No hope. Ouch.
It's much more painful than it looks. Being empty, having no desire to do anything else except give up, to keep going when there's no hope, I found out just recently, is a humongous and respectable feat. Seriously.
To keep driving when there's no fuel left is almost impossible. But there's always the few to try and use every last drop.
I thought I could fight the good fight no matter what, because that's what right, and standing for what's right is supposed to be the immediate thing to do; an easy decision. But to do that, you have to have hope in what you're doing. And if you don't have that, what is there left?
When you're being tortured in a place where you are and have been on the losing side all along, and all your beliefs are questioned and tested, when all the life inside of you is being sucked out and every ounce of hope you once had is stripped from your heart's socket, it isn't difficult to just drop everything you once believed in and stop fighting.
Sometimes stopping the fight and letting go of the sword you can't even use is the only thing left to do.
A very passionate post, though I wish you would delve further into explaining how you are fighting yourself. I got a little lost there. And although this post was depressing to read it was well done. Well done.
I was excelling in school, and things were going very well for me. I sacrificed my social life a little bit with the intentions of doing better in school, and I knew that it would pay of if I could attend my dream school. I finished my sophomore year very well, and I got two A’s in the chemistry course I took over the summer. I was efficiently balancing competitive [sports] and a rigorous academic schedule. When I started my junior year of high school, I was still getting used to the AP classes that I signed up for, and I really shut out most of my social life because of the work load I pushed upon myself. Homecoming was coming up and I didn’t think that I was going to attend the dance. My friends were urging me to take a “break” from studying, and they wanted me to enjoy the events that Arcadia High School had to offer. I didn’t have a date, and I didn’t think that I was going to ask anyone. Then, while I was procrastinating on Facebook (like most high school students) a senior friend that I had in class messaged me about who I was going to Homecoming with. I knew that she had a pretty sister, but I didn’t ever dream of asking her out on a date. After a little talking, the girl I was talking to encouraged me to ask her sister. I was shocked, knew very little about her sister, but I knew she was pretty. So, with some much needed encouragement from my senior friend, I was going to ask her younger sister out to the Homecoming dance.
After going to the dance with her, I really started to like her. She was beautiful. She had piercing blue eyes, long blonde hair, and I liked her sweet personality. Suddenly, I stopped worrying about school, and I invested too much time into my social life. We would spend time together every weekend, and I was starting to get to know her.
I eventually asked her out, and we started dating. That’s when things got a little more complicated, and I heard things that made her less perfect than I though she was. My good friend told me that she did drugs and that she didn’t take on life with a motivated mentality. I saw that what he was saying was true, but I thought I could change her. I wanted to change her, and I think I did to some extent. She stopped doing drugs, and she took school more seriously, but we still didn’t agree on many things. I ignored all of the blatant signs, and thought that we could “agree to disagree,” on a lot of things.
We dated for a very long time and it was starting to get serious. Although, there were always things that would annoy me. She would spend a lot of times with her friends on the weekend, going out and partying, while I stayed home and tried to salvage my already mediocre grades. While it annoyed me, I just thought that I was being too bitter, so I didn’t say anything. I just wanted her to be happy, so I accepted her for who she is and went along with the relationship.
Recently, I was at In’N’Out with my friend and we bumped into three guys who attend Loyola High School. They were under the influence of drugs at the time, and I really wasn’t interested in talking to them, but the friend I was with knew them, so we stayed and talked for a little. The Loyola guys were saying the dumbest things, and I really didn’t want to be there, but I stayed there and didn’t really say much. Like most teenage guys, the topic of girls came up and they started to talk about Arcadia girls. They went through all of the cute girls at Arcadia and talked about who they were dating, and whether or not they were interested in them. They didn’t know who I was, and they started talking about my girlfriend. One of the guys said, “Yah, she has a boyfriend, but she cheats on him so that doesn’t really matter.”
I couldn't believe what I was hearing, and I thought that maybe they were talking about some other girl who had the same name as my girlfriend. I knew that they weren’t very bright, and I thought that what they were saying was rubbish. After leaving the burger joint, I called my girlfriend and asked her if she had every cheated on me. I trusted her and told her, “I would believe her if she said no, but I was just wondering.” She got defensive and asked who I was talking to, and where I was. She went on to say no, and I really didn’t think about it very much.
Later that night she told me that she had cheated on me.
I felt idiotic for trusting her.
I was hurt.
I was manipulated.
I had a preconceived image about what she was like prior to going into the relationship, and it blinded me from who she really is.
She took advantage of all I had to offer, and manipulated me for a very long time. I don’t think that she would have told me, but I can see how she was afraid of what would happen.
Nevertheless, she was a liar and a cheater. My emotions wanted to forgive her and move on, but my logic told me to move on in search of someone who could be loyal. I couldn’t tell that she was manipulating me, and I wish that things didn’t have to end the way they did.
I don’t like using the words “I love you,” because of how powerful I think those words are. I avoided using those words and avoiding thinking that I loved her. I was hesitant with a lot of things when we were dating, and I regret not taking the risks that I could have taken. While I realize that she was the ultimate one who made the choice of being dishonest, I still wish that I could’ve done something to prevent it from happening. I still think she’s a sweet girl, she just makes very poor decisions. My friends don’t see it that way, they let her actions define who she is. I think that I see past her decisions, and I see the positive in her - it’s one of my flaws. I shut out all of the negative things, and appreciated everything that she had to offer. I only realize how I felt once I lost it.
“So please understand
This isn't just goodbye
This is I can't stand you” (+44)
Perfect timing, I just got an excellent quote in hand
"You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in this world… but you do have some say in who hurts you. I like my choices.”
- The Fault in Our Stars
From your tone of voice, I heard regrets and bitterness. And yet, I do not what you two have been through. Maybe it wasn't worthwhile at all. Maybe there was something in the relationship. But ultimately it is your choice to pick who can hurt you.
It is okay.
Next time, pick carefully of who can get in the sandbox.
Thank you for the great read!
I know it sucks to have a girlfriend who cheated on you. Life is unpredictable; you never know what's going to happen to you. You have to experience all the bad and good things in order to grow. I hope that incident doesn't bother you anymore.
I enjoy reading your post.
It's really a difficult thing to imagine to feel like somebody so close can hurt you so much. Things can really give you a new perspective after that. I'm glad you are okay, whoever you may be.
Ever since I was a kid I was susceptible to manipulation because I have always had trouble saying no to people. This ended up getting me into a lot of trouble. After I moved from Santa Monica to San Marino I had a lot of trouble making friends. I entered this school district as a second grader. The problem I struggled with was figuring out what type of person I was. I was in war with myself.
As we all experience, a change in schools, we try our best to fit in. What kid wants to go against the norm and manipulate their chances of seizing great opportunities? Instead of fighting for what I believed in I tried to become “popular” by being a mean second grader. I would talk bad about this little girl who was a “nerd” and “un-cool” with this girl who happened to be the most “popular” person in my grade. This mean girl ended up making me feel guilty to get her whatever she wanted. The one time I tried standing up for myself, she dropped me as a friend. That was when I realized that she was just using me to get my lunch food. Sure, at the time this was not so bad but it got bad.
In fourth grade I was manipulated by this girl who I thought was my best friend. I started focusing on her needs and desires that my grades suffered. I would buy her many gifts because she would share her lunch with me. It got to a point when I ended up forging my mom’s signature on a progress report because my grades were suffering and I was too scared to admit to my mom what was happening, needless to say I got caught. I took the punishment and this girl “helped” me by trying to comfort me, but later she dumped me to be friends with the “popular” girl. It may seem like I am falling under the same traps, but my trust in people made me overlook my sense of right and wrong.
One would think that I would learn my lesson but I do not. This is part of the reason why I have trouble trusting people and I push people away. If my significant other were to be cheating on me, I would not want him to tell me. In my opinion I would rather be left in the dark because if he really did not mean to cheat on me, he would feel guilty for the rest of his life. This would be his punishment. This is why I also feel sometimes lies are better than the truth. This shows that we as people are constantly at war with ourselves.
It's the moment of truth, and the moment to lie,
The moment to live and the moment to die,
The moment to fight, the moment to fight,
To fight, to fight, to fight!-This is War by 30 Seconds to Mars
I have to commend you on your resilience because those were some harsh experiences. I can totally relate to you because I tend to trust people way too easily also. Trust is one of the most difficult things to grasp since often you can't tell who truly deserves it. Great writing and keep it up!
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