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Complete Psychological Topics 1: Chapters 4-5


by Ben Huot

July 15, 2012

in more formats

Table of Contents

Chapter 4
Depression, Stress, and Schizophrenia

by Ben Huot

4.1 Causes of Depression

4.1.1 Schizophrenia

One of the things that a person diagnosed with Schizophrenia has to deal with, that most people do not think as related to the disease, is depression. It is not known whether or not the depression comes from the medication, as a side affect, or that it is just part of the illness, because they don’t want to have people not take medicine, just so they can prove this, as it is so important to take your medicine, if you have Schizophrenia. Depression is not the most major symptom, but it is important to deal with.

4.1.2 Determining the Cause

Depression has different causes: one is chemical, which requires anti-depressant medications and some are environmental and behavioral. You have to find what is triggering the depression, to find out the effective method, of reducing or eliminating it. People with Schizophrenia can also get depression, because of their common lifestyle, as they are often very poor (due to the fact hat they have to live mostly off Social Security SSI, because they usually cannot work full time), isolated by their paranoia (which often causes them to avoid others), and they have difficulty in forming and keeping relationships with others.

4.1.3 Stress

In dealing with depression that is caused by your situation, stress can also cause depression, as well. People often think that they will be less depressed, if they get something important accomplished, but this is not necessarily true. If you do not get enough rest and work too often, this can cause depression as well. I have to be careful not to work around the clock and give myself time off, especially in the evenings, in order to avoid being severely depressed. Watching certain shows and reading certain topics can cause depression as well (just like they can also cause paranoia).

4.1.4 Keeping Balance

Stress is very detrimental, to someone with Schizophrenia, and can increase symptoms dramatically. One of the biggest reasons why it is hard for someone with Schizophrenia to keep a job, is that there symptoms get much worse, as their stress increases. One of the big things that is important for anyone’s health and something someone with Schizophrenia deals with even more than others is keeping balance in life.

4.2 Solving Thinking Problems

4.2.1 Accepting Your Limitations

One of the hardest things to deal with, in having Schizophrenia, is accepting your limitations. You need to accept that you cannot live the way you did, before you became mentally ill.

You also need to tell others, who you spend time around, that you are mentally ill and how you get stressed out much more easily than the average person and what stresses you out. Telling other people about your illness, from my experience, has always improved my interaction with others. Even though whenever someone hears about Schizophrenia on the news, it is almost always describing someone, who has committed a violent crime, people don’t treat you like a sociopath, when they hear about your illness. They know very little about it, but don’t seem to have a hard time accepting it, or fear you, after you tell them.

It is not fair to expect the same out of a person, who is disabled, as a person, who doesn’t suffer from the same disability. Just as a person, who is missing legs, is not expected to walk or a developmentally disabled person is not expected to be really smart, so a person with Schizophrenia should not be expected to be able to live a normal life. Even living on your own and just keeping your house clean and getting the food you need means that you are excelling. Remember, the Bible never says that we have to run a marathon, write a novel, travel around the world, or run for political office. Being a good person is expressed, in the way we treat others, in our daily interactions, and not in some epic struggle, that people write poems about.

Another thing that is hard to accept about Schizophrenia, at least for me, is that I seem to have to go through periods of time, where things are much more difficult for me. It is important to be patient with yourself, during these times and not expect to get over it quickly, or find a silver bullet, that will resolve all your problems. Having Schizophrenia is a very difficult situation, to deal with, and there are no simple or obvious answers. One of the big problems I have is that I crave being around people, but, at the same time, get very annoyed by how rude people are and have a lot of anxiety about meeting new people, even though they almost always like me.

Another problem many people with Schizophrenia struggle with is that they have to deal with difficult people, who are often abusive (which includes many people who work with the mentally ill for a living). These experiences are so hurtful, that the person with Schizophrenia, thinks long and hard how to avoid these situations and spending this amount of energy worrying about the future is not healthy. One of the big reasons why we suffer as humans much more than animals is that we over think things. We spend too much time trying to avoid or solve problems, that we could deal with much better, if we just accepted them, as a natural part of life. Often times things are easier to deal with, when you don’t think about them so much. Another reason why this is harder for someone with Schizophrenia is because they are generally not busy most of the time, as they cannot usually hold down a full time job, so they have too much time to think.

4.2.2 Self Reflection

One of my biggest problems, due to my personality, is also made worse by my having Schizophrenia. This problem is over thinking things. I self reflect much more than is helpful. While it can be useful to be able to analyze and improve upon your past situations, that were stressful to you, you can also cause yourself unnecessary stress doing so.

Anticipation of future pain increases your amount of pain. If you knew you were going to have a very painful situation or injury to deal with in the future, would knowing this beforehand make dealing with this easier or harder? One of the most common causes of death, in the case of serious injury, is shock and not the injury itself.

One of the ways animals can deal with difficult situations that people cannot overcome is because they don’t think a lot about things, before or after they happen. They live in the moment. Much of the things we deal with are actually made worse, by our trying to avoid them, especially when they are inevitable and/or a natural part of life (like death).

One of the best ways, to not reflect on your situation, is to focus on helping someone else, who is in a worse condition. Volunteer work can give you a sense of purpose and a sense of belonging, that can make it easier, for you to deal with your losses and your frustrations. This can also be a place to network with other people ,who have similar interests, or to meet contacts, that can help you find a more satisfying career.

Just giving thanks to God, for the things you have, is very effective, in treating depression. When you are frustrated, without having something you thought you were owed or had earned, and then had it taken away, you can accept this better, if you just think about how you have a roof over your head, or that you have enough food to eat. Just enjoy the feeling of being full, or being at a comfortable temperature can help you relieve stress.

4.2.3 Compartmentalization

My worldview is very holistic and most people would be well advised, to consider seeing the world this way. But, this is not always healthy, when taken to extremes. While it is great to see how things like philosophy, literature, religion, culture, politics, economics, the environment, weather, history, and art are related, to broaden your view of the world, it can also allow you to jump to some very unhealthy conclusions. Always seeing yourself stacked up against the major world problems can get discouraging very easily.

While most people need to learn more about the world, it is not always helpful to dwell on these huge issues, that affect us on a global scale. As much as we may not agree with the way the world is going, even if we can come to a conclusion as to how to solve the problems, we have no power to implement them. Even the US President has very little power to change things and his role in politics is very limited.

We need to be aware of what things are like in a big picture way, in the course of our learning, but intellectual pursuits can not be our only way of finding meaning and direction in life. As much as we get frustrated by the bad decisions of our leaders and our ancestors, we are not personally responsible for the choices they made. It is not our fault that the world is the way it is and it is not our purpose in life to resolve these issues.

We need to reject the idea that Americans are responsible for what our leaders gave done. The only way to approach making the world better is to narrow our focus and limit ourselves, to an area we can affect and are good at. One person cannot turn the tide of history. God is in complete control of our future and He does not want us to mentally suffer, because of other people’s bad decisions.

The best way to fight against what is wrong is in how we treat others and by keeping ourselves healthy and in good shape, so that we can help others, in small ways, for more years. What God wants us to do are things that are within our ability and in our reach. We all play minor roles and we need to look to God to put them together into an world changing epic story.

4.3 Work Issues

4.3.1 Keeping Busy

One of the paradoxes about living with Schizophrenia vs. the average person is that, while most people are constantly busy and fighting for more time, for themselves and their families, a person with Schizophrenia often does not work for a living and so struggles to find enough things, to fill up their day. There are different strategies in filling up your time, when you don’t spend most your day working.

One of these solutions is to find a part time job (if your disability pay allows for that), or to do as I have done and find a hobby, that takes the same role, as a career. One of the downsides to this is when you do work for yourself, your work never ends, and you don;t have a boss, who tells you to go home and get some rest. And if you do your work hobby out of your home, you very rarely get away from it.

Another way to take up time is to spend much of your day gaining new experiences or meeting new people and spending time with people you like. This approach is difficult, because a common way to meet other people is to join a club or another activity, but usually they require you to do some activity, which requires you to do something, that might be stressful. These clubs usually meet on a regular basis, so stress can from anticipation of future meetings ending badly and also by the stress involved, with getting to a certain place, by a certain time.

Ultimately life is more than a series of task to complete, so it is important for a person to realize, that life is about experiences and who you are and cannot be completely fulfilling, if you feel the need, to plan out your entire life. It is important for a person with Schizophrenia, to get plenty of sleep and time to relax. As there is not a job to look forward to doing each day, it is important for them to find a hobby they look forward to doing.

4.3.2 New Skills and Major Changes

Learning new skills or making major changes are some of the more stressful things, for someone with Schizophrenia. Any sudden changes in lifestyle, like going back to school, even just auditing and only one class at a time or things like committing to a club, or volunteer job are very stressful. I also find it very hard, when I have to be, at a certain place, at a certain time.

Trying to learn a whole new skill, even things like drawing or leather working, causes a lot of stress. When I have tried to make a major change, in what I do with my time, in a way that caused me to have to give up writing or my website, I became very depressed. I think any kind of sudden change is bad, for someone with Schizophrenia.

When you do need to make a change, the best way would be to do so in small steps. I am presently trying to get myself to the point, where I can take classes, at the local community college. To get there, I am starting on going to the local YMCA and just paying each day, so that there is a little commitment.

On the other hand, I have been able to do much more, than I could, when I first had Schizophrenia. I now can watch a movie, all the way through, across town, at the movie theatre. I am now able to go to Portland by car. I can do my laundry myself and remember to take my medicine on my own. I wasn’t able to do any of these things at first, so my theory definitely works.

This anxiety about doing new things ties into my understanding of Schizophrenia being, in some ways, like a very extreme form of anxiety disorder. Many people with Schizophrenia have trouble being around other people and often have different kinds of obsessive compulsive disorders. And the idea of gradually increasing your exposure, to what stresses you out, which works in treat anxiety disorders, can also be used with Schizophrenia, by desensitizing you, to what you fear.

4.4 Dealing with Others

4.4.1 Get Out Daily

Another way to deal with depression is to increase your interactions with other people and get outside more. Even going for a walk or just being around other people, in a restaurant or other public setting can improve your mood dramatically. Exercise also helps counter symptoms of depression. Even though exercise may be strenuous, at the time of the activity, it will make you happier the rest of the day.

The medication that deals with Schizophrenia make it more difficult to get out, because of the tiredness, caused by side effects of the medication. But you will have a hard time sleeping and be in mental pain, if you don’t push yourself to get out. Even with the trouble I have dealing with obnoxious people, getting out always improves my mood.

4.4.2 Over Stimulation

One of the big differences between a person without a mental illness and one with one is that, when you get depression or psychotic symptoms, you cannot be convinced rationally, that you have no reason to be depressed or paranoid, even though nothing has changed since, before you were suffering and, when you get over it, nothing has changed, either. When dealing with these irrational thoughts, you can often overcome them, with a combination of medicine and lifestyle adjustments. While you cannot change the way you respond to situations be reasoning, you can void the things, that trigger your troubling thoughts, or increase your resistance, to the triggers.

I can easily get overstimulated, by visiting, even with my family, for too long. I often have the TV on, in the background, especially when I sleep, so as to keep my mind distracted from paranoia, but I often have to shut it off, while reading or writing. Overstimulation can cause stress, which can lead to paranoia or depression. It is the opposite problem of not getting out often enough.

One of the ways to avoid being over stimulated is to limit the amount of time you spend in stressful situations. A useful approach to dealing with both over stimulation and depression, from not being around people enough, is to take be out with people, in a number of short lengths of time. You can also deal with this by limiting the number of people you are interacting with. Another way to deal with it is to get yourself used to more stimulation, by gradually increasing the amount of time doing these kinds of activities.

I also have been able to expand my ability to be more stimulated, for a longer time. One of these areas is in movies. I used to not be able to sit through an entire movie, even watching on my TV, at home. I now can go out to the theatre across town, wait for an hour, and watch an entire movie. I used to find many things overstimulating, like listening to music, as I want to hear all the lyrics and think about them.

This strategy of getting yourself used to more interactions is useful in dealing with Schizophrenia, because a lot of symptoms of Schizophrenia are similar to anxiety disorders and obsessive compulsive disorders, but of an increased magnitude. One way to deal with anxiety disorders is to gradually expose yourself, to more stressful situations, like being out in public, for longer and longer periods of time, which is also a common strategy for dealing with obsessive compulsive disorders. One of the ways to deal with obsessive thoughts or compulsive behaviors is to expose yourself to what triggers it, for longer and longer periods of time. Eventually, you get desensitized to it and are then able to refrain from doing the compulsive activity or even thinking about the obsessive thoughts.

Another way to deal with over stimulation, after the fact, or when you cannot avoid it (like having to take medicine, for a long period of time, with unusual restraints, on what you can and when you can eat, or by having to go to doctor’s appointments) is do things that release stress, like mild exercise and getting enough sleep. If you feel totally hopeless or stressed out and nothing can help, even though you are on appropriate and sufficient medicine, is to get to sleep and, if necessary, take a PRN, that can help you do so. Also, exercising can help get you tired and that will help you sleep, as well.

4.4.3 Social Challenges

One of the paradoxes of Schizophrenia is that although counseling and cognitive treatments are not effective in combating the paranoia, delusions, and hearing voices, they can be effective in treating symptoms still present, while on appropriate levels of medication, that are effective. Another thing that people do not realize about Schizophrenia is that there is a whole range of symptoms, that are more disabling, in the context of interacting, with other people.

Another factor that can cause or increase depression in someone with Schizophrenia is the paranoid and delusional perception of how others are relating to you. One way to avoid or lower your stress in these situations is to be able to talk, to someone you trust later and challenge your perceptions. Many times I feel someone has hostile feelings toward me and later my mom explains, that what I perceived was not accurate.

Other symptoms that make it hard to relate with others is that it is hard to find an activity in which I find joy in doing and that I often believe that other people can hear my thoughts. I also speak very fast, as my mind works very fast (it also did before I became mentally ill, but it has increased since then), so that other people have a hard time keeping up with me. I also have difficulty in speaking, because I do not move my lips, do to my worrying that people will read my lips, when I talk to myself.

Another consequence of Schizophrenia is that is is easy, for me, to see the negative side of things and this makes it hard to relate with others too. One of the ways of helping avoid or lessen depression involves being positive and optimistic. My mind naturally goes to the worst case scenario, for every activity and I often make doing simple things unbearably complex and challenging, because of this perception of reality.

4.5 Rest and Recovery

4.5.1 Getting Enough Sleep

One of the things that is very difficult keeping regular in their life, for someone with Schizophrenia, are sleep schedules. Keeping a set sleep schedule affects many things in life: it makes it easier to get your medication at the right time; it helps you keep to a schedule, keep disciplined and balanced, in how you spend your time; and it keeps your internal clock working more normally, which can make your life much more healthy. Most people with Schizophrenia have trouble sleeping and the medicine often makes you so tired, that you never feel rested, no matter how much sleep you get.

Not getting enough sleep is a sure way to get severely depressed. One of the best things to do, if you are getting very depressed and nothing seems to help, is to sleep. You can get a PRN (as needed) medications, that can help you sleep, and exercise can make you tired as well, when you need to get more sleep.

4.5.2 Relaxation

One of the really difficult things to deal with, when you do not have a job, is that you have too much time on your hand. In the past, my strategy was to do work constantly, so that keeping busy would help me not be aware of my paranoia, but when I cut back, as I no longer was able to keep working, at that level, I experienced severe depression, on a level that I have never experienced before. And the level of depression I am fighting now is much more painful, than suffering from severe paranoia. It hurts so much, that I have to find a way to get rid of it soon.

One of the really important ways to deal with stress is to make time for taking part in doing things that you enjoy. Part of fighting depression is finding things to do when you are down. When you have something to look forward to, you can feel more upbeat and positive. A good way to relax is to find a hobby, that does not require a lot of emotional energy and helps pass the time, without being accompanied by stress.

Some of the really difficult things to deal with, for me, in finding hobbies and things to do, with other people, is that I do not have a car and I do not do well in the evenings. I also ride the bus, so it is hard to get transportation in the evenings and on the weekends. I also do not want to take on any more responsibilities, that often accompany joining a club. I also get stressed out, if I make a commitment to a particular activity and get a lot of paranoia and depression, after signing up for a class or financially committing to a gym. The combination of all these factors complicates my search for relaxing and enjoyable activities for many years.

In finding a new hobby, I have decided to pursue arts and crafts, as I enjoyed doing them as a kid. I also enjoyed exercising, when I was in high school, so I am starting that as well. I also enjoy meeting people, so I have found some less intense books I can read while at a cafe, so that I can have more time around other people. Finally, I have decided to try going to start watching plays, as I can now watch full movies and get inspired by these kinds of activities.

4.5.3 Contact with Animals

Another good way to deal with depression and lower stress is to have contact with animals. Just petting animals can lower your blood pressure. Animals are a lot of work, but there is no substitute for a furry animal that loves you no matter what.

Animals are: completely genuine, are totally honest with you, and love you, no matter what you accomplish, how much money you make, how good looking you are, or what your social status is. All an animal wants from you is: to be kind for it, feed it, and give it enough room. Dogs particularly will spend all their days waiting for you and they adapt to almost any kind of situation, as long as you are there.

Chapter 5
Positive News about Myself

by Ben Huot

5.1 The Cause of My Epiphany

5.1.1 The Books

2 Books

I wanted to thank the authors of 2 books, for their help in my epiphany, as well as the Holy Spirit, who is my muse and inspires in me me the words to write. The first book is “Christian Beliefs” that Can Drive You Crazy: Relief from False Assumptions by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend. The second is book is Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. There is a movie coming out soon, that stars Julia Roberts, based on the book, with the same name. Elizabeth Gilbert is probably the person most emotionally similar to me, that I have ever found (at least in a currently living person).

She is Like Me

She was raised by workaholics, taught to be totally independent and self reliant, she is very intelligent and spiritual, as well as being a gifted writer and teacher. She has trouble relaxing, accepting her limitations, and being patient with herself; she worries too much about things she has no control over; and she is a very talkative and likable person. She also suffered from a year of depression, like I just have, and is within a couple years of my age.

How We are Different

The things different about her is she lives in New York City, she is a world traveller and has a great network of friends, she follows what some call the Perennial Philosophy and has studied in the Indian Religious Tradition, and she has been married before. The other big difference is that I am a disabled veteran and have lived with Paranoid Schizophrenia for over 10 years. I also don’t have a movie made about me.

How the Book Affected Me

I found her book to be a very fast read. I read her book in about 3 sittings. I found her book very easy to read and a very worthwhile read. She helped me to come to several epiphanies about myself and discovered what core issues I need to work on. I feel guilty, that I don’t have to work for a living and so have kept myself constantly doing work mainly in reading and writing books. As unbelievable as it sounds, I would greatly prefer working a job, even if it was only minimum wage, then have Schizophrenia, but I was never given a choice.

5.1.2 My Problems

My Veteran’s Pension

As far as the veteran’s disability is concerned and even how I left the military were both under very unusual circumstances. I left after 13 months, in the space of 5 weeks, with an honorable discharge. Even when the military knew about my mental problems, they wanted me to stay. It bothered me, for a long time, how people who have been burned seriously, often get less of a veterans pension, than me, but as my mom says, I have given my mind for my country. There is a good reason why I get more money, than people with physical disabilities. It is very hard to get any pension at all, as it costs a lot of money for the government, and they are very selective about who gets a pension and how much they get.

My Limitations and World Problems

It is very hard for me to accept my limitations. I wanted, before I became mentally ill, to be an international business man, working in the distribution side of marketing. I had to scale down from this, after I left the military and became mentally ill. I still felt responsible, to help out the world and try to at least speak out about all the injustice in the world. It bothers me greatly, that we in America live the lifestyle we do, because we are living at the expense of those in the Third World. Our lives are as good as they are, because we have taken away, from other people, whose lives have been made worse, as a direct result.

What Drove Me

Just living independently is a great achievement for someone, with my mental illness, and I have also written 50 books and I am only 32. I have pushed myself tremendously, to get this done, because of the uncertainty of our future. Even before I learned how precarious our situation is and how easily we can go back hundreds or even thousands of years in technology, if the price of oil increases too much, I knew that the world as we know it may not last long. I am even more concerned about our future, if we do find enough energy, to continue our world economy, as some of the new technologies made possible will give people too much power and it will then be too easy, to abuse the situation.

I am Not Responsible

I also have a hard time being patient with myself. I need to accept that I am only responsible for myself and only need to worry about my actions. And it doesn’t matter what other think of me or what I do. I need to accept where I am and who I am. I need to expect less out of myself. Just as people do not expect diabetics to eat too much candy or developmentally disabled people to do brain surgery, so I cannot expect myself to be able to do things that increase my stress. I already have done more than most people accomplish in a lifetime and I should be happy with where I am now. There is no need for me to worry about world problems, as I did not cause them, cannot change them, and am not responsible for them.

5.2 My Life

5.2.1 Where I am Now

Finishing Up

I have been looking for new directions in my life, for the last few years. I finished my independent study of the humanities and I have suffered from severe depression, for about a year and found out finally, after trying everything else, that I needed a change in my anti-depressant. I ended up stopping writing for a month and got my iPad. I just finished writing the last of Technical Collection and Book of Lists.

Things to Write About

I also have had some time to think about things, while I have been avoiding the news and other types of TV and movies, that cause depression or paranoia. I have moved to another part of town, so can get out on the weekends now. I have finally thought of some new things that I wanted to write down. Some of this inspiration comes from talking to my family about some of the world problems we are facing and I found a very encouraging book, that showed me that I have bought into some very common Biblical sounding ideas, which I acknowledge are wrong intellectually, but I still believe on an emotional level.

5.2.2 What I have Learned

Normal to Fail

I have finally accepted that it is normal to be in pain, to fail, to sin, to not have progress for a while, or even regress. I now know that the reason why God gave me some of the big problems I have had to deal with, at a young age, that few people have to deal with, is that the thing that scared my most was becoming arrogant. But I have so many problems, that I never have to worry about that. I have finally accepted where I am and am ok with it. I think I really am happy and at peace now.

The Psychological Approach

I have realized that a skilled Psychologist is the best approach, to my problems and that it might be best to stay away from churches, as I believe that they contain more negativity and are the source of more problems than they help with. I am not alone in thinking this and believe that this is the best way to improve my relationship with God. I think for me to live like a life that is patterned by Biblical teaching I need to avoid the Church and focus more on my emotional and physical well being.

Why Wait to Get Antidepressants?

There are several reasons for why I did not ask the doctor to change my antidepressant medication at first. One of the reasons why is that depression can be caused by different things and psychiatric medicines only work when the symptoms are caused by a chemical imbalance rather than behavioral/lifestyle causes. Another reason is that I also suffer from Schizophrenia, so I take an anti-psychotic medicine as well. On the simplest level the anti-psychotics work as sedatives/tranquilizers and so they make you more tired and generally bring you down from your excessive thoughts and the antidepressants often do the opposite and keep you from being depressed by elevating your energy and mood. Often times an increase in the antidepressant can works against the anti-psychotic medicine. Another reason is that I suffered from what I can best describe as a combination of both depression and paranoia, which is supposed to be impossible.

5.3 My Core Problem

5.3.1 Exploring the Problem

Recognizing the Obvious

My core problem is that I am a workaholic and all through my writings I talked about the mystical aspect of Christianity, the importance of rest, and the importance of humility. I understood all of that very well in an intellectual manner, but have just began to accept these ideas on an emotional level. I am one big paradox as we all are. But realizing that life is based on paradox is not sufficient - we need to look for the correct aspects of these paradoxes. I have thought of being either a mystic or being an analytical person as I saw in the paradoxical relationship of Taoism and Confucianism. I have learned a lot about both of them but it has been hard for me to take the best of both.

Obstacles to Taking a Break

The Bible speaks about this a lot, but people with my personality and background miss the main point, which appears to us as a very subtle idea. There are various reasons for my feeling this way, including how I became so serious after serving in the Army and having a very serious and difficult disease to deal with in my diagnosis of Schizophrenia. For people who know little about this illness, it does more than just cause paranoia, voices, and delusions. It even goes farther than causing apathy, having inappropriate expressions, depression, very strong anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorders which all make it hard to get along with others. It goes as far as making it difficult for the person with Schizophrenia to even find joy in doing anything. I didn’t find out about this last part, until this last year and that, in addition to my study of survival topics, was a big part of what made me feel so seriously depressed for such a long time. The anti-psychotic (Schizophrenia) medicine causes many, including myself, to be completely exhausted constantly and to never feel rested up. Often the person has to choose from the pain of trying to stay awake during the day or the pain of paranoia. This is even on the newest medications. They just aren’t as smart and focused as there developers intended.

Negative Social Factors

A lot of people who suffer with Schizophrenia ore so preoccupied with dealing with the paranoia which is rarely overcome due to people not being able to accept that they need to take the medicine. It also doesn’t help when so many people use the word crazy as being a way of describing someone as being worse than evil or as an insult when they disagree with you. It also doesn’t help when someone with a mental illness commits a crime and although it is not politically correct or socially acceptable to attribute their motive to be based on race, age, or physical handicap, it is considered acceptable to attribute their motive to mental illness. It also doesn’t help that whenever someone has Schizophrenia on a TV show or movie they are always violent criminals. And one of the most destructive thing people say who have used psychiatric medications that didn’t need them tell everyone that it is a sign of weakness or personal failure to be taking psychiatric medicines.

I feel that being as rational as I am while having Schizophrenia is more painful (not just mentally but physically as well) because I see really understand what it is that I lost due to my disease.

5.3.2 Finding Possible Solutions

Enjoying the Process

So what I have finally realized, which probably is very obvious to the average person, is that Christianity is not defined by a certain result, but is rather a process. Just as the means determines the end (while many people say the end justifies the means), so doing good works to become closer to God is having everything mixed up. We are supposed to grow, by God working in our lives and the fruits of this may be good works. Being a Christian is exactly that, being, rather than doing something. God wants use to grow spiritually, emotionally, and intellectually, as well as take care of ourselves physically. I think we are finally realizing that there are a multitude of things that interact with each other, that form who we are, just as there are many aspect to what produces a healthy nation, or a healthy social group.

Bettering Ourselves

I think Christians are too focused on fighting an outside spiritual evil. We go out, as if to war, when we should rather focus on self improvement. People are given much more freedom than evil spiritual forces do and the battleground is mostly in our minds. We need to break our desire to do what we want and rather decide to do what God wants. This is the real battle. For people like me (who are more like Martha than Mary Magdalene) following God means that we are taking care of ourselves, but doing so by faith in God’s power, over time, with other people and not try to do everything ourselves. Excessively doing good works doesn’t get us anywhere spiritually, if it destroys us physically an/or emotionally.

Relaxation Strategies

I think one of the things that has kept me from spending time relaxing is that I like to be busy doing things. It is very hard for me to just sit and do nothing. I think that it would be good for me to combine some activity, that doesn’t use my mind, with relaxing. One of the reasons why I wanted to join the military after high school was that I was so overwhelmed by all the work in high school that I looked forward to not having to use my brain for a while. And my inability to motivate myself to relax probably goes back to my experience in the military, when I was never able to relax, because I never felt safe.

5.3.3 Reasons and Motivations

Overworking isn’t Biblical

For those unwilling to do anything for themselves, think of it this way. The Martha approach is like that of the Pharisees. If you think that you need to do more than others, then you think of yourself as better than others and if you think that these good works are necessary to improve society, than you are saying that God needs you. Either way, excessively doing good works, to improve yourself or to help others, is s sign of arrogance and sinful pride. You are also not a good witness to others, when your example implies that it is not possible to both be happy and to follow God. And, eventually, you will be locked into a very miserable existence or else you will give up God. It would be better for you to give up on your projects instead. And by pacing yourself and by giving yourself resting time, you will actually be more productive, in what you can accomplish for God.

Bible Teaches Rest

Not only is overworking unbiblical, but there are many examples of resting in the Bible.

The first is that God rested on the first day, after He created the world.

Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.


Genesis 2:1-3

The second is one of the ten commandments: the sabbath.

Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.


Exodus 20:8-11

Third is the command to let the land rest on the 7th year.

And six years thou shalt sow thy land, and shalt gather in the fruits thereof: But the seventh year thou shalt let it rest and lie still; that the poor of thy people may eat: and what they leave the beasts of the field shall eat. In like manner thou shalt deal with thy vineyard, and with thy oliveyard.


Exodus 23:10-11

Fourth is a command called the Year of Jubilee.

And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years; and the space of the seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years. Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the jubile to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the day of atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land. And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof: it shall be a jubile unto you; and ye shall return every man unto his possession, and ye shall return every man unto his family. A jubile shall that fiftieth year be unto you: ye shall not sow, neither reap that which groweth of itself in it, nor gather the grapes in it of thy vine undressed. For it is the jubile; it shall be holy unto you: ye shall eat the increase thereof out of the field. In the year of this jubile ye shall return every man unto his possession. And if thou sell ought unto thy neighbour, or buyest ought of thy neighbour’s hand, ye shall not oppress one another: According to the number of years after the jubile thou shalt buy of thy neighbour, and according unto the number of years of the fruits he shall sell unto thee: According to the multitude of years thou shalt increase the price thereof, and according to the fewness of years thou shalt diminish the price of it: for according to the number of the years of the fruits doth he sell unto thee. Ye shall not therefore oppress one another; but thou shalt fear thy God: for I am the LORD your God. Wherefore ye shall do my statutes, and keep my judgments, and do them; and ye shall dwell in the land in safety. And the land shall yield her fruit, and ye shall eat your fill, and dwell therein in safety. And if ye shall say, What shall we eat the seventh year? behold, we shall not sow, nor gather in our increase: Then I will command my blessing upon you in the sixth year, and it shall bring forth fruit for three years. And ye shall sow the eighth year, and eat yet of old fruit until the ninth year; until her fruits come in ye shall eat of the old store. The land shall not be sold for ever: for the land is mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with me. And in all the land of your possession ye shall grant a redemption for the land. If thy brother be waxen poor, and hath sold away some of his possession, and if any of his kin come to redeem it, then shall he redeem that which his brother sold. And if the man have none to redeem it, and himself be able to redeem it; Then let him count the years of the sale thereof, and restore the overplus unto the man to whom he sold it; that he may return unto his possession. But if he be not able to restore it to him, then that which is sold shall remain in the hand of him that hath bought it until the year of jubile: and in the jubile it shall go out, and he shall return unto his possession. And if a man sell a dwelling house in a walled city, then he may redeem it within a whole year after it is sold; within a full year may he redeem it. And if it be not redeemed within the space of a full year, then the house that is in the walled city shall be established for ever to him that bought it throughout his generations: it shall not go out in the jubile. But the houses of the villages which have no wall round about them shall be counted as the fields of the country: they may be redeemed, and they shall go out in the jubile. Notwithstanding the cities of the Levites, and the houses of the cities of their possession, may the Levites redeem at any time. And if a man purchase of the Levites, then the house that was sold, and the city of his possession, shall go out in the year of jubile: for the houses of the cities of the Levites are their possession among the children of Israel. But the field of the suburbs of their cities may not be sold; for it is their perpetual possession. And if thy brother be waxen poor, and fallen in decay with thee; then thou shalt relieve him: yea, though he be a stranger, or a sojourner; that he may live with thee. Take thou no usury of him, or increase: but fear thy God; that thy brother may live with thee. Thou shalt not give him thy money upon usury, nor lend him thy victuals for increase. I am the LORD your God, which brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan, and to be your God. And if thy brother that dwelleth by thee be waxen poor, and be sold unto thee; thou shalt not compel him to serve as a bondservant: But as an hired servant, and as a sojourner, he shall be with thee, and shall serve thee unto the year of jubile: And then shall he depart from thee, both he and his children with him, and shall return unto his own family, and unto the possession of his fathers shall he return. For they are my servants, which I brought forth out of the land of Egypt: they shall not be sold as bondmen. Thou shalt not rule over him with rigour; but shalt fear thy God. Both thy bondmen, and thy bondmaids, which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them shall ye buy bondmen and bondmaids. Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall ye buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land: and they shall be your possession. And ye shall take them as an inheritance for your children after you, to inherit them for a possession; they shall be your bondmen for ever: but over your brethren the children of Israel, ye shall not rule one over another with rigour. And if a sojourner or stranger wax rich by thee, and thy brother that dwelleth by him wax poor, and sell himself unto the stranger or sojourner by thee, or to the stock of the stranger’s family: After that he is sold he may be redeemed again; one of his brethren may redeem him: Either his uncle, or his uncle’s son, may redeem him, or any that is nigh of kin unto him of his family may redeem him; or if he be able, he may redeem himself. And he shall reckon with him that bought him from the year that he was sold to him unto the year of jubile: and the price of his sale shall be according unto the number of years, according to the time of an hired servant shall it be with him. If there be yet many years behind, according unto them he shall give again the price of his redemption out of the money that he was bought for. And if there remain but few years unto the year of jubile, then he shall count with him, and according unto his years shall he give him again the price of his redemption. And as a yearly hired servant shall he be with him: and the other shall not rule with rigour over him in thy sight. And if he be not redeemed in these years, then he shall go out in the year of jubile, both he, and his children with him. For unto me the children of Israel are servants; they are my servants whom I brought forth out of the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.


Leviticus 25:8-55

Then there was Elijah who was given food and rest by an angel.

But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers. And as he lay and slept under a juniper tree, behold, then an angel touched him, and said unto him, Arise and eat. And he looked, and, behold, there was a cake baken on the coals, and a cruse of water at his head. And he did eat and drink, and laid him down again. And the angel of the LORD came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee. And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Horeb the mount of God.


1 Kings 19:4-8

Jesus and His Disciples rested.

And the apostles gathered themselves together unto Jesus, and told him all things, both what they had done, and what they had taught. And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. And they departed into a desert place by ship privately.


Mark 6:30-32

Christ has Already Won

I have felt like I need to fight, to struggle for what is right. I often imagine myself dropping out of a plane and parachuting to a battle, when I think of what might be my ultimate fate. But Jesus Christ already defeated the devil. Christianity has successfully spread beyond Europe and now outnumbers Islam 2 to 1, with most of those still practicing indigenous religions preferring Christianity over Islam, even though Islam had a thousand year head start and Christianity has only had a hundred years, in most parts of the Non-European world. We also are not responsible for the conversion of others to Christianity. God brings people to himself. We may be able to be a good witness, but it is not our responsibility beyond that. Only the disciples and those called to the ministry are charged with spreading the Gospel.

5.4 Being Without Doing

5.4.1 The Solution

By God’s Grace

I have realized that the way that we become is not through doing. And the way be become more Christ like and mature as Christians involves 3 aspects: us being willing to change, God giving us maturity as a free gift by His Grace, and allowing time for this to take place. Praying ourselves as well as having other pray for us will enhance this effort.

God Does all the Work

The reason why it works this way (that God does the whole thing by Himself once we give Him permission) is because this is how God chooses to work with us. Despite are lack of belief in the power of the spiritual in our lives does not mean God is not constantly defying physical laws, to the benefit of those who want to serve Him and to bring others to Himself. Just as God has chosen for us to become righteous enough to enter Heaven, by our faith and His grace, again with God doing essentially the entire thing for us, so He will do almost everything needed, for us to mature in a similar fashion, if we would only consent to His desire to do this.

5.4.2 Spiritual Laws

Different Rules

Most people have a very flawed understanding of how God works and why things happen the way they do in the physical world and we also have a poor understanding of the spiritual world, which makes the former seem more confusing. The way we see the world from our human vantage point, we see throughout history that when one group of people becomes more powerful through technology, economics, weather, or any other factor it dominated the other weaker group of people. The spiritual world also has laws and things also work according to a predictable pattern, but the pattern is different, because of the different rules God governs this realm by.

How Americans Think

One of the big reasons why the US is hated throughout the world and we get ourselves into unwinnable wars is because we don’t study history. Many of the same groups, who feel discriminated against and marginalized, did the same thing to others earlier on in history. The US needs to understand, that there are no good guys and in many parts of the world, so we need to choose between the lesser of two evils, or just not get involved. The only other alternative is to occupy a country, for at least a thousand years and the US is not likely to exist in its present form that far in the future, nor does our country have that kind of patience and resolve nor is it unwilling to make the sacrifices necessary for this to happen.

5.4.3 Real Freedom

God Values Our Freedom

Many people have a poor understanding of God’s perspective, motivations, and personality. Great thinkers often spend their entire lives trying to explain why we suffer, when God is all powerful and also perfectly morally good in nature. In America believe we really value our freedom. We think that freedom comes from having more choices and less restrictions in life. But God really values true freedom, especially of people, and God also likes to use people, so that people can be in control of their future.

Why and How Bad Things Happen

God allows bad things to happen, because all these things all arose, from our rebellion against God. God created everything, so that it worked together perfectly. We then screwed it up, by our decision to follow what we assumed was our own will. Many people might also wonder why, if there are powerful evil spiritual forces in the world, why have they not already enslaved us and why we have waited so long for the End of Times. In the spiritual world, God greatly restricts what other spiritual forces are allowed to do. God allows people much more latitude. That is probably why the anti-Christ is a person and why a lot of powerful people are trying to advance technologically and corrupt people morally - they are not allowed to do as much spiritually, so they take the physical approach.

Acknowledging Reality

Our true enemy though is not an outside force, but ourselves. What we need to worry about first is our own lives and how we treat others. We need to “submit to God” which is really a bad approximation, because God already is infinitely powerful and controls everything that happens. How do we really praise God, when the best things we say about God are not flattering, but factually true. To submit ourselves to God is really only about acknowledging reality. What we need to do, to allow God to work in our lives, is to accept His help. So salvation is not so much about faith or about repentance per say, but really just acknowledging what we already know is true.

Only 2 Choices

The only thing we need to do is to ask God to rule our lives and for His will to be done in us and not our will. Some people would say this is not freedom and they are allowed to follow, what they think is their own choice. But there are only 2 choices spiritually: serve God or serve money (the devil). Just like in an addiction, what feels right is not always best for you, nor are you always in control, when you have your own way.

5.5 True Humility

5.5.1 God’s Perspective

The Other Side of Humility

I think one of the things that has held me back in my spiritual growth is that I saw God’s desire for us to be humble as Christ was as a one sided equation, where we know we have blown it so bad, that we have no reason to have a high opinion of ourselves. I thought of it as that basically all our problems are our fault. The other side of the equation, which I am only now discovering is that God does say that we have failed, but because of His choice and His grace, we are given direct and supernatural help, to become better people.

God Doesn’t Want us to Suffer

God doesn’t just judge us and then expect us to become more moral, by our own effort. God only wants us to be humble, so that we are willing to ask God for help. God allows things bad to happen to us, but we do not grow by becoming more willing to deal with pain, because we have learned to be more patient and persevere. The reason why God allows problems in Christians’ lives is to get their permission to enter their lives, so that God can remove the obstacles and strengthen us, by His grace, so that we learn to stop trying to so everything ourselves.

God’s Objective

God is not trying to discipline us, with punishments, like some parents have or the legal system does, to get us to behave better. God has realized that we can’t do things by ourselves and so He wants to help. We are worthy of being happy and at peace, not because we earned it, but because God decided to take the penalty Himself and gave the ultimate sacrifice. So even though we are not highly esteemed, by our actions, God does value us more than the protection of His Son (who is also God Himself).

5.5.2 Living a Happier Life

What is Life For?

We are not just to endure life, but to have a happier and more peaceful life. We don’t deserve this, but God has decided to give this to us, because He chooses to. A Christian’s life is not supposed to be a constant struggle, with no time for rest and recovery, but rather a meaningful and positive existence, where despite our failures, we have hope and the ability to improve our lives (but only by God’s divine intervention). God gives us things to do, that we cannot do, not for us to fail, but for us to ask for help. It may be surprising to many people that despite our terrible track record with responsibilities given to us, God really enjoys being with us and is willing and able to take the time, to change anything in us and in our circumstances, to make our lives better.

Consequences of Free Will

We will never get the credit, but we can have better lives. It is hard to understand why God doesn’t just force us to do what is best for us. But God values our freedom and is unwilling to give that up just so that things work out better. God wants us to make the right choices, but ultimately sees us as adults and wants us to choose of our own free will, because love cannot be forced. We are allowed to makes bad choices, only as a logical consequence of having the ability to love God and His creation, while still retaining a free will.

Enjoying Life

God doesn’t want us to settle for good enough. He doesn’t want us to just grin and bear it and just stay alive, because God doesn’t want us to commit suicide. Neither is our life’s purpose to get some project completed or to help so many people. When we die, the only things we take with us are our identity, personality, and our memories. The most important thing we can do in life is to first be honest as to where we are at, then to learn more about God and get His help, and finally to have a good relationship, with the people we know. If God really wanted us all to be perfect, at any cost, He wouldn’t have given us a free will.

5.6 Problems with Theories

5.6.1 Background

I Love Theories

Most of what I write about is not about practical things, but rather theory. I am a person who loves working with ideas and I am very creative about it. I make mosaics of ideas by combining pieces, that I have cut out of other theories, much like people cut out pictures in magazines to make a collage, or people make scrapbooks out of photos. What I do is like a kind of abstract art.

How I Write

You may wonder how I plan out what I am going to write about and stay disciplined to write on related topics. But I was never good at making outlines and I have learned in school to think in complete sentences and to write very rapidly. This makes it possible to write, without having to be disciplined about it.

Writing Style

I write what I do directly and then fix it for typos, but I never rewrite or re-think what I have written. I very rarely throw any of my writing away or rewrite something. I can also keep the idea in my head long enough for me to get back to my house, so that I can write it directly in my word processor. I don’t keep a list of things I want to write, as this stresses me out. This approach actually creates a problem for me in writing books, in that I never know when I am finished with them.

5.6.2 My Theory on Theories

Bad Theories

Many people do not like studying theories, as they find them very impractical. I did not feel this way about philosophy though, but the reason why I think people feel this way is that many theories are not a very accurate explanation of reality. I read somewhere (I think in reading some of the philosopher Hume’s writing) that reality is the truest judge of any theory. If you ever run into a situation where the theories you learned about it are not useful, then the person who taught the theory needs to rethink it and develop a better theory.

Reason for Failure

One of the big reasons why theories fail to help explain reality is that they don’t allow for failure, contradictions, and inconsistencies. What people think is often not well explained by philosophy, because philosophers are too consistent and rational and people aren’t. We philosophers often strive for perfection and this ends up not being very useful, to those who study philosophy. I think it is hard to reconcile the way the world works with any theory, because there are many factors that influence the major events, that happen in the world, over the course of history and there are also many factors, that determine why people decide how to respond, to the situations that they were born into.

People are Different

Whenever you try to explain history or an individual’s beliefs, by finding just one theory developed from just one perspective, it often fails. One of the problems with reducing people and history down to one theory is that people are very different and things that work for one person, in one time of history, in one situation do not necessarily help another person, in a different situation. I recognized early on that in my writing that I needed to explain things differently, for different people, with different strengths, weaknesses, and situations.

My Approach

I also realized that I was setting myself up for inevitable failure, if I asked for followers, because I could not predict what someone else would get inspired to do, from what I have said. That is why I have asked people to use my writing to inspire them, but to decide on what is important to them by themselves and not try to take an approach that works for me and expect it to work for them. You can also feel responsible, for people abusing your theories, if you try to convince other to believe the same as you.

Opposite Problems

This is the problem with trying to get different people to approach problems in the same way: it doesn’t work, because often some people have exactly the opposite problem of other people. Just like people have very different tastes in music and different sense of humor and often don’t appreciate different styles, so it is hard for a person to understand how someone else has entirely different needs and problems than another person. It is interesting that, when people asked Jesus what to do to be saved and go to Heaven, Jesus told everyone to do something different then everyone else.

5.6.3 The Biblical Approach

More than a Philosophy

There are a few things that I believe are absolutely true, which the Bible is very clear about, but most things in the Bible are not that simple. Just as Buddha gave different kinds of people different advice, based on their level of understanding, so the Bible is not arranged, so that we can make a detailed theory to consult, to solve our problems. There is no way we can find a philosophy of the Bible, because it is more than a philosophy. The Bible is the word of God, simplified so that we can understand it, but it was designed to work for billions of people, over at least thousand of years of history. That is why it is not easy to explain everything in the Bible by one theory.

Relationship with God

It is often said so many times, by a certain type of really intense Christian, that the Bible is about a relationship with God. I cannot argue with this as there is a good deal of truth to it. But there is more to life then just relationships and that is not the only way to approach God. I think too many people dismiss large portions of the Bible, thinking they are outdated and are not useful for them to study. I also think many people make what God asks of us too complicated.

Point of Life

God simply wants us to be happy. He wants us to live better lives and become better people. But trying to find some sort of goal is missing the point. The best way of understanding the eternal perspective of God, that I know of, is to think of God as existing in a kind of eternal moment. Living is a process and consists of a variety of experiences and dealing with a variety of emotions and situations.

What God Wants

God wants us to experience His presence in the world and not worry so much. God doesn’t require us to know something specific, or attain a certain level of faith or of understanding of theology. Being a Christian means that you decide things for yourself, based on a lot of different types of information. The Bible is the most important one, not because it explains everything, but rather that everything it says is true and accurate.

Who God Is

We can always depend on God, but God will never be able to depend on us. A relationship with God is not like a close friend, where you are complete equals. God is not a drinking buddy. He is our Lord and Savior. We need to understand that, in dealing with God, we need to have a sense of wonder and awe about Him, revere Him, and we need to express this by living serious lives, and in taking things like sin seriously.

Take Life Seriously

When we see Jesus as God, we need to understand that God is also God the Father and God, His Holy Sprit. God definitely does have a sense of humor, but God knows that there is a place and time for it and does not elevate having fun at the expense of our safety and well being. There is a reason why the Bible is not very funny. Life is an experience and the only things we take with us are our minds, emotions, spirit, and everything else that we can’t see. We need to focus on what is everlasting and we need to do this by maintaining a balanced existence, just like God is balanced.

5.7 Being Realistic

When people are young, they all think they will be famous and that they will be able to solve all the world’s problems, all by themselves. I used to want to be famous, so that I could help solve world problems.

5.7.1 Working with People

The Reality of Fame

The thing is that when most people become famous, they are only famous for a short period of time, which is often not at the end of their life. This sets up a situation, where you are going to experience a low of the same magnitude of your high. That is the same reason why drugs cause depression and destroy people. Another thing about fame is having a lot of money. But wealthy people have the same problems everyone else does. In fact, for people making over $50,000 a year, an increase in wealth does not improve the person’s life.

Romantic Ideals

I think we also have unrealistic expectations of others, that we have relationships with. One of the big reasons for divorces among young people is that they expect too much of their spouse. You have to be happy alone, before you can be happy married. Everyone has habits that will make you angry and they will fail you when you need them most. The only one who will unconditionally love you and consistently be there for you, when you need them, is God. The closest thing we can find in physical form is an animal.

Hard to Meet People

I used to be upset and feel myself to be a failure, because I have a hard time finding friends. But I am not the only one. In fact, this is quite common. It is ironic that, in a world filled with ways to communicate instantly and continually, with almost anyone for almost no money, we actually feel more lonely than ever before. The Internet, as many have found out, is a bad way to meet people.

Problems with Virtual Dating

The biggest problem with meeting people first online is that people lie, when they can get away with it. The idea of sharing intimate ideas with someone, before you meet them, is not a good way to start a relationship. I want to see the person first, so that I can find out basic things about them, like whether they are a woman or a man, instead of investing all sorts of time and emotions in someone, who could be making up everything and you have no way of being sure it is not a scam or a stalker.

Finding Friendships

I also have more problems forming relationships than other people, as I have trouble getting to things that start at a certain time repeat in a schedule. I get tired very easily and I have a lot of anxiety about how I will get along with other people that I don’t know. I feel bad that I don’t know more people, but when I see people in public, who work at the places I buy food from, or I see on the bus, I would rather be alone than be around these people. My sister said the other day that it would be really easy for her to find a bunch of really annoying friends, but that the hard part is finding people who are worth getting to know.

Lack of Maturity

I would like to marry someone in their twenties, but I think it is unrealistic to expect someone of that age, to have the maturity, to stay in the same marriage, for the rest of their lives. Most women over 30 are single today. I think most people marry young and then get divorced, before they start to even get to know who they are and what they want out of life. In the past, people were more mature at a much younger age, but today people seem to mature, at later an later dates, as time goes on. Most religions consider this time in history to be one of the most immoral and corrupt.

5.7.2 Anxiety for No Good Reason

Downsizing Our Lives

I think it is also unrealistic of us to think that we can continue to consume more and more resources and to not pay back our debts, while continuing to increase them. The earth is a finite place. There is only so much water, so much energy, and so much room. The way of the future will be to downsize our lives and have simpler and more basic ambitions. We can change the world, in our homes and in our lives, and we need to narrow our focus on this area, and not worry about the decisions everyone else makes.

Problems with Journalists

I think one of the problems with the liberal counterculture media and even the mainstream conservative media is that they are too negative. All we hear all day is the problems. Maybe reporters should stop brining up problems, without giving possible solutions for them. I think one of the reason why the alternative media is so negative is that they expect the common person to give up something for the greater good. And then they are unwilling to work with religious groups, which are the vehicle, for many of the positive developments, in the world today.

We Worry Too Much

At this point, most people are so overwhelmed by our problems and are so busy just trying to keep their jobs, that they get discouraged very easily. If you knew how your life would be 10 years from now, would you really want to know? I think it is unrealistic to expect that we will never get sick again or be depressed or in pain, but knowing about it before then is just unbearable. We need to spend less time worrying and more time enjoying what we do have.

Why Life is Short

Most people will not live past 80 and this has been the case throughout history. And the reason for this is that life is only manageable, for a certain number of years. We are not designed to sustain ourselves, beyond this period of time, in the world, the way it is now. And trying to extend your life does not increase your happiness. Many people now worry about dying, because of heart disease or cancer. Maybe it is ok that we finally die of something. Maybe dying of a heart attack is not the worst way to die. Maybe this is actually progress.

The Cost of Being Healthy

Many scientists now think that we would be healthier and live longer by eating a near starvation diet and work out intensely. Most people have lived this way, throughout most of history, and the people that could afford to not do this, didn’t follow that route. Being overweight was once the sign of healthiness and wealth. We also worry about getting fresh air and getting a certain amount of sunlight. We want to travel and vacation outside and in a warm climate.

Staying Inside is Good

There is a reason why people decided to live in a controlled setting, in houses, and in living in the same place. Living a life out in the elements and living off the land is very difficult and the land can only support so many people. Civilizations were able to start when people settled down together and started living off agriculture, instead of hunting and gathering. The populations increased and the first cities started, because they could finally produce enough food, to sustain a large population.

The Best Location

What people don’t often see, about these supposedly ideal tropical islands, is that most people who live on them want to live on the mainland. In the tropics, the bugs are bigger, more aggressive, and more poisonous. Most people, if they lived in somewhere outside of carefully maintained hotels, in these tropical climates, in the third world, would realize that living in a temperate climate, in the US is actually one of the best climates to live in. The most rapidly growing cities are ones, where they are big enough to have things to do like concerts and plays, but small enough, to avoid major inner city problems.