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The End of All Things

“It’s been a long time since I’ve held a sword, Charly.”

“Then you shouldn’t keep your sword waiting,” he replied.

Chao shook her head. A sword was the end of all things. A taste of blood required more blood and Chao was no longer the same. She didn’t thirst for blood nor mischievous fun. She was mild in manner and always had been, but without Charly and Demonico to slay by her side, there was no point in slaying at all. A game was only a game when there were players to be playing.

“Do you remember what it was like, that first night?” Charly asked her. “I remembered I took you from that forsaken port town and gave you a life of your own. You held that sword in your hand and it danced with you, slicing elegant patterns in its wake. You were great at the game, even much better than Demonico.”

She ignored the mention of the other. She had seen him recently and had used nonviolent ways to set him free from some sort of entrapment. Surely it wasn’t any of Charly’s fault. Demonico had probably been wandering realms when he was caught. The creatures who caught him were ferocious hunters. It took Chao, Angelus, the second Angelus, Shaar, Six, and Five to take down a single entity. Demonico was trapped underground with a horde of them.

Where was Demonico now? Probably home safe with his wife, Anna.

“I don’t live by the sword anymore,” Chao told him. “I live by kindness and goodness and all the things hoped for that are unseen.”

Charly laughed. Kindness and goodness? What was Chao now, a saint? The thought lingered in his throat as a deep chuckle that he couldn’t resist holding down. “Did you forget what we were?” he asked her. He cocked his head to the side and stared into her deep cherry eyes. She had forgotten, or have tried to forget. It was there, her old self, a fading light like a dying star. He held her upper arms and laid his chin against her left shoulder. “We are the darkness that creeps, silent and still, choking all life in our path. We are the heroes that heroes only dreamed to be like.”

His whispers made her shudder. “You don’t even make sense,” she told him. “You and Demonico may be darkness, but I am not and I will refuse to become that which I once was.”

He lifted his head to look at her and frowned. “You loved the blood.”

She nodded. “I did. I relished it.”

“And not now?”

“I loved it too much. The killing. The torture. The fun. If I started again, I wouldn’t stop.”

“You’re afraid,” he said with a smile, confident that he had found out why she changed. “You’re afraid of who you really are.”

Chao shook her head. “A sword is the end of all things. I’m not afraid for myself or of what I might do. I’m afraid of all the ones in my path and that also means you.”

He bit his tongue and released her. “I’m not in your path,” Charly asserted. “Demonico and I are the closest of your friends. You would not hurt us.”

She reached out and touched his cheek. “You and Demonico are indeed the closest of friends that I have.” She paused. “But I have hurt you both and I will again without regard because that’s my true nature. I hurt worse the ones I love.”

Charly resigned his imploration with a smile. “Then perhaps it is best that you do not wield a sword again.”

“I resist the temptations,” Chao said. “When I give in, I normally sleep it off instead. I’ve been good.”

“So I won’t see you again?” Charly asked. It had been too long and she never came by often enough as it was.

“Oh, you will,” she told him. “It’s hard to resist temptations.”

 
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Posted by on May 14, 2015 in Ongoing Story Progression

 

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Twilight, Fifty Shades of Grey, and Why Women Repeatedly Put up With Abusive Relationships

Fifty Shades of Grey, the movie adaptation of E. L. James’ erotica, came out this past weekend, spurring millions of dollars in revenues and lots of reviews. I’ve always been vocal about my dislike of Fifty Shades of Grey and its predecessor, The Twilight Saga, which glorifies abusive relationships and aren’t appropriate for adults, let alone the younger girls that Twilight is aimed at as it’s target audience. James, who originally wrote Fifty Shades of Grey as Twilight fan fiction, took author Stephenie Meyer’s twisted Edward and Bella relationship and turned it into an even worse kind of relationship between Christian and Ana. For me, Fifty Shades of Grey and The Twilight Saga isn’t merely just fiction. It’s personal.

I grew up in a predominantly white neighborhood. I went to a middle school that was predominantly black. I’m Asian. It wasn’t easy to fit in. From a young age, I was taught that people of the same color usually tended to stick with one another: all the white kids, all the black kids, all the Hispanic kids, and yes, all us Asian kids as well. By middle school, there was more of us so that was great. I didn’t feel so bad then, but before that, it was hell trying to be nice to kids to have friends, to not be alone, and to not feel alone. I spent most of my childhood trying to please other people, which translated into an automatic mechanism that triggers in my relationships later on in my life. The thought process behind that mechanism is pretty much along the lines of, “if I can do this or that for someone, or prove myself valuable and worthy of them, then I won’t have to be alone”. As we can all see now, it’s a really messed up way of thinking, but we all still do it to a degree. We give in to peer pressure and do things we would’ve never done before. We tolerate the subtleties of abuse hidden behind promises and empty words from others that were meant to be nothing but a form of control over us.

It took me a long time to break out of that habit, the habit of letting others do whatever they wanted with me and to me just as long as they’re happy and okay. I’m still not as mean as I’d like to be, but I can now tell people to go screw themselves when I do catch the mind games and realize all the power plays for control of me. It’s all very subtle. Or it can be blatantly in your face like something I read today with a woman who is trying to appease a friend who was upset at her for apparently no reason. While she didn’t understand the friend’s anger, she still wanted the friend to be happy and she still wanted the best for that person, even when they basically told her the equivalent of, “fuck off“.

I’m not a stranger to those words. I used to cry about it. I used to be confused and not understand why someone was being so mean when all I wanted was to make them happy. It all stems back to my childhood and wanting friends which led to low self esteem and an overwhelming dependency on other people’s thoughts of me to validate my self worth. Reading what that woman wrote made me feel bad. I used to feel like that. I used to be the one who would try to make someone smile and think the world of them, even when all they wanted was candy I had or some other material thing. I wanted to say something to her, to that woman. I wanted to tell her the reason why it didn’t matter that her friend was upset, but why it did matter that she move on and not let such people control her emotions nor her life anymore.

It’s almost always about a boy.

Bella sees Edward and immediately starts obsessing about him. It’s not even that he’s into her, it’s that she created an ideal of him in her head simply based on how gorgeous he was. And in her ideal of him, he is actually a big, soft, cuddly teddy bear that wants love just as much as she does.

This is where all of us fail at relationships before there even could be any sort of relationship. We create versions of people in our minds that are suited to us, that are suited to our needs. Unfortunately, love is an incredible need that every person experiences. Love isn’t sex. And sex isn’t love. But because of love, many, many people will suffer abusive relationships all because of the ideal of someone they have clung on to inside their minds.The truth could be rather vocal like the woman and her friend. Instead of taking what was said and what happened for what it was, she held on to the hope that somehow, her love could change them and their behavior towards her. How I greatly wanted to shake her and tell her to snap out of her defeating daydream of someone else and what she hoped they were. It was much different from who they really were.

In Blood Lust, book two of the Turning Vampire Series, Marisa suffers a very controlling and physically abusive relationship at the hands of Alessander. Because he physically beats her, people reading that book can see that it’s domestic violence in its purest form: physical abuse. However, many people don’t realize that abuse isn’t only when someone is black and blue and almost dead from being beaten by their spouse/lover/friend/family member/etc. Abuse is any form of control of another. That could be as simple as convincing someone that they shouldn’t hang around a friend who has never done any harm or as complicated as manipulating someone like how Alessander manipulated Marisa.

One of my friends reading Blood Lust was greatly disgusted by Alessander and Marisa’s relationship. Although Marisa did learn how to stand up for herself and how to stop Alessander from hurting her, she went through all the steps that someone in an abusive relationship goes through. One of those main things is believing all the lies told by the other person. It’s odd how people are drawn to others who say no to them. Edward made it clear that he didn’t want Bella, and yet, she stalks him like a puppy, hoping he’d recant that whole episode where he ran off to get away from her and instead, declare his undying love for her. Christian made it clear to Ana that she was merely a play thing to him, a toy he wanted to use when he wanted and she had no influence in his life at all. He was influencing hers. However, despite all the signs of no, she still believed that deep down inside, he was a tortured soul who needed someone like her who could put up with his punishments and make him happy in the hopes that one day in some far off future, he’d confess his love for her. Alessander is a lot different from Edward and Christian. Instead of pushing Marisa away like how Edward did to Bella and Christian did to Ana, Alessander manipulated Marisa into thinking she wasn’t worth anything to anyone and that no one wanted her. Alessander was everything of the classic typical abuser in a romantic relationship that most people think of when they think of domestic abuse. They think of violence, of fights, of being put down and torn down. They think of male egos and arrogance. Alessander presented only one of the many multifaceted faces of abuse. Edward and Christian presented two more. All three were abusive. Edward creepily watched over Bella while she was asleep and kept tabs on her while she was awake. He listened in on other people’s thoughts to spy on her. Christian downright controlled Ana with his demands and the risk of “losing” whatever semi-resemblance of a relationship they had together. Alessander totally took it over board, but sadly, it’s not very far from the truth of how reality is for many people. Many people will never do what Marisa did. The concept of self preservation, self worth, self anything seems foreign to them.

It all starts in our heads.

As much as everyone wants to blame the more aggressive person in an abusive relationship, abuse actually starts with the person who allows themselves to be hurt. I’m not talking about the people who wake up one day to a black eye and don’t know how their relationship got that way. There’s that too and it’s wrong. I’m talking about us and how we have these expectational ideas of others. The woman believed her friend was simply having a bad day. Although she couldn’t understand why the friend was angry at her since she only strives to make the other person happy, it is well understood that whatever sort of relationship she has with that friend is largely one sided. I can’t really blame her for thinking the best or wanting to think the best about others, but the excuses that she makes for the friend’s behavior is something I’m familiar with. There’s a part of all of us that can see things as how they truly are. We will see bad friends as bad people. Yet, a different part of us holds on to these unrealistic ideas that our bad friend is somehow a good person and just going through a rough time. I was stuck in that circle for a while. I knew exactly what kind of friend my friend could be because I’ve watched her spend time with others, do things for others, be kind to others, share with others, and then, she spends a total of a few minutes saying hi to me and that’s it. She talks longer if she’s hungry and wants me to cook her food. Yet, knowing that she was a bad friend to me, I kept hoping that if I was nice back, she’d eventually act like a real friend. She never did and I had to finally accept that some people are great friends to others, but really bad friends to us. And even then, I still cried about it, because I knew she was a good person at heart. And that’s exactly the dilemma that this woman was having: her friend was a decently good person with a good heart and they were good friends with others, but the two of them didn’t get along well. Yet, knowing this, she still held on to that false hope that maybe that friend will change and treat her better as I thought my friend would surely see my worth and treat me better too. She didn’t.

We often are afraid to lose people for imagined potentials at what kind of relationship we could have with someone in the future.

I remember a girl from my childhood who hated me, but I wanted to be her friend so badly, that I was super nice to her all of the time. To describe our relationship, it was like Cole off of the movie, The Sixth Sense, and the bully Tommy who pretended to be friends with him in front of his mom. This girl pretended to be my friend in front of her mom. We’d get to school and she’d ditch me for all of her other friends. Her mom thought we were best friends. I thought we were best friends too. I didn’t understand that we weren’t until I was much older. That was a bad relationship. We didn’t physically fight. We didn’t hurt each other. But there was still a lot of misleading things and manipulations and abuse. In the end, we weren’t friends anymore and her mom came to my house and gave me back all the stuff I gave her daughter. The sad thing is, I had nothing to give to the woman as something her daughter gave me out of friendship. Back then, I also wasn’t brave enough to tell her mom what really happened. I still cared too much about what anyone thought of me.

Peer pressure is a huge thing for children. Being liked, making friends, feeling lonely…all of that affects everyone at some stage in their life. We can do without all the books that glorify abuse in relationships and tell us that we need someone else’s approval to be worth something. We’ve already told ourselves that enough as children. We hope for a, “I’m proud of you” from our parents and teachers. We hope for inclusion from our friends. And now we have popular books that tell us that independence is a lie and we need someone else to be complete.

The message in today’s world is that we cannot be strong without someone being weak. That’s the wrong message to send out to anyone, anywhere. I saw a meme today where some out of the closet atheist woman said, “I am happy that men wrote the Bible. That means that women didn’t.”

My reply was: “That’s sexist and quite frankly, a foolish thing to say. It took a man in order to birth that woman. It’s cool for men and women to be treated equally, but all this superiority bs simply needs to stop. She could’ve simply said she was an atheist instead of trying to belittle men to make her self worth as a woman greater. It shows that she has no self worth and that’s sad.

The opening poster said: “Oh BooHoo! You missed the point.”

In which I replied, “So I should acknowledge other people’s stupidity for a supposed point? No thanks. If someone’s going to make a stand for what they believe in, there’s no need to bash anyone else to make you or your religion or whatever you believe in as being better. She will die like the rest of us. Every human being will have the same ending: death, and there’s no escape from that.

So the OP responds with, “Freedom from religion certainly angers some folks, eh?

And the last thing I replied on that topic said, “It’s not about religion. It’s about people. Did I care that she was speaking against the Bible and that she’s atheist? Nope. Don’t twist my words into something you want it to be to better suit your own religious agendas. It’s not your freedom from religion that angers me. It’s my freedom of religion that angers you. That’s sad.

It’s really tiring when a lot of my pagan/atheist/non-christian friends talk about Christianity more than I do, and yet, they want to claim that Christians are the ones shoving our religion in their faces. I can’t tell whether they’re trying to convince everyone not to be a Christian by constantly talking about it, or that they’re trying to convince their selves of how they shouldn’t be a Christian by talking about Christianity all the time. Either way, let it go. It’s obsessive behavior and abusive to yourself. It’s not your freedom from religion that angers me. It’s my freedom of religion that angers you. And that is sad.

It’s late. I’m calling it a night. Stop the abuse and the acceptance of abuse in relationships.

 
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Posted by on February 17, 2015 in Book Reviews, Diary, Movies, Things Worth Fighting For

 

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Salvation and How it’s Not Merely a Christian Thing

Thanks to my good friend John, this journal entry is for you. ^_^

Last night, I discovered the truth about Rebecca Brown MD, author of He Came to Set the Captives Free and Prepare For War. It was disheartening because I believed what I read some odd six years ago when I was given a copy of the late 80’s published books to read.

He Came to Set the Captives Free and Prepare for War recounted the story of how Rebecca Brown, a doctor then, met with Elaine, a satanist and proclaimed bride of Satan, and saved her from the clutches of the wicked one.

My thoughts are pretty much said down below on a status post on Facebook which is below with permission from John for his comments.

Xao Thao feeling disappointed
10 hrs ·

I don’t think I can name one christian living today that is actually a real christian. It’s sad. All the things I believed in were simply exaggerated lies told by people with problems, much like myself. We all need help, but God, don’t offer it to people when you can’t fix yourself.

  • John Behrent Don’t try to be a good Christian, just try to be a good person.
    5 hrs · Unlike · 1
  • Xao Thao That defeats the whole point for me, John. However, I’ll keep trying as I go. I know I’m very far from anywhere “good”.

     

  • John Behrent Well, it may be time to look for a different point, then. Life’s all about change. We often get led in directions we don’t expect.
    2 hrs · Unlike · 1
  • Xao Thao Mortal men cannot corrupt what is holy. I like my God. Thanks.
  • John Behrent Change isn’t always about corruption. Just take it from someone who’s walked a lot of strange roads, noone can see all ends. And if your God can, he’s not giving out spoilers.
    2 hrs · Unlike · 1
  • Xao Thao It’s not about change. It’s about having something tangible to hold on to. When you don’t have anything physically real you can point to or hold on to, then it’s all about faith and believing in the impossible.I read two very old books by a Rebecca Brown MD called, “He Came to Set the Captives Free” and “Prepare for War”. They’re Christian books published in the late 80’s detailing how Rebecca Brown met and saved a “Bride of Satan” named Elaine. Satanists, as I know now instead of from back then, is a lot watered down, which probably made me believe the books even more because way back in history, people were much, much more intertwined with their faiths no matter what that faith was. You had sacrifices. I mean, seriously, no one does that anymore…to an extent. But that’s what I meant, people were passionate back then and they showed that passion through actions.Anyhow, those books were a foundation on a belief I held for a very long time, the belief that not all the lost were damned forever. Granted, I know I’m not any different from any pagan or occultist or wiccan or satanist because I know my faults and I know why I continue to sin, but there was hope that somewhere along the way, if one person could be saved through this whole event, it would be worth dying and being damned myself right now for that one person.I know that probably doesn’t even make a lot of sense, but I believed there was a reason why I I know what I know and that that knowledge could one day help someone which makes it all worth the while. Rebecca and Elaine were like me and my friend Keera. We were both delusional in our fantasies of a world beyond whichever one there was and while she lived it in her dreams, I lived it while awake because I was weird and I did weird things like that. Rebecca abused Elaine plenty, being a doctor who no longer is a doctor now, but much of their testimonies were simple fantasies created by the both of them, and oddly enough, there’s some homosexuality that comes into light in their real lives. While me and Keera didn’t spread our madness beyond ourselves, we were still mad, and for a good long while too. That was like a decade of my life there.

    There were people in my life I truly believed God wanted me to help and I did as much as I could. I remember telling someone once, “when God answers all your prayers, you can be sure that it’s God anymore”. And even with that, I held on to the belief that people were worth saving for. That is was quality over quantity. But the fact is, we all suck. We’re all the same. So what good is quality when it isn’t there to be found? There is no one person greater than the next and no one person who is much more worthy of being saved than the next. The only thing that distinguishes someone saved from someone unsaved, is that the saved person said yes to Jesus Christ. Albeit, that yes could simply just be a lie in itself as well.

    I don’t know anymore, but I do know that I’ve been everywhere else and nothing filled the empty hole inside of me. It is Christ who saved me and I’m happy with Him whether I understand anything or not. I simply wanted to see Christ in the world too, but that’s pretty much impossible.

  • Xao Thao This needs to be a journal entry.
  • John Behrent Xao, be attentive and you’ll realize that LIFE is about change.
  • Xao Thao I do change, John. I change every day. Change, however, doesn’t mean being indecisive and running after the first thing that excites you when your truths no longer work for you. Faith, to me, isn’t a fleeting fancy that I chase after anymore whenever it suits my whim. I used to do that when I was empty. I used to try and find things to fill that vast abyssal emptiness inside. I’m okay now. I’m not empty. I’m merely just a bit disappointed in myself and in humanity as a whole. And yet, I know there are still people worth saving, even those who don’t believe they can be saved. You don’t have to be a Christian to want salvation. Some simply want to be saved from the monsters that they are.
  • John Behrent That’s an interesting view of it all. Might be the start of a really insightful blog.
  • Xao Thao It is! And it’s dedicated to you! With that being said, this is all going in my blog if you have no objections. I’m always good for debates.
  • John Behrent No, that’s fine. Go ahead.
  • Xao Thao You’re awesome! Thanks!
  • John Behrent I just try to make my little corner of the world a little brighter. If I sometimes challenge all the God talk, it’s just in the name of spirited debate to encourage thought, not rudeness.
  • Xao Thao I’m abnormal. Rudeness is making fun of someone or bullying them, not questioning someone’s belief and trying to understand them or trying to make them understand that they know why they believe. I find it interesting that most people don’t even have a clue as to why they follow a certain faith. It’s kind of sad really. Just sheep to the slaughter. It’s always good to encourage thought, whether for your benefit or someone else’s.

What is very interesting is that near the end of this conversation on Facebook, I commented that salvation isn’t only for Christians, that some want to save themselves from the horrors that they are. It makes for a good blog entry, and it’s true. Salvation isn’t simply a Christian thing. Everyone wants to be saved in some way, shape, or form.

I’ll write a different post about it later. I’m about to be very busy. Later.

 

 
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Posted by on December 1, 2014 in Book Reviews, Diary

 

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What Disney Taught Me About Relationships

I love Disney movies. Disney made such great animated films like Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, Hercules, Tangled, and Frozen.

However, Disney movies have unrealistic relationships which impacts the thoughts of young girls and even adults. What woman hasn’t yearned for a prince or a knight in shining armor to rescue them? Women even write out those same fantasies in romance novels: dashing princes, knights in shining armor, strong men who can save us. What woman hasn’t had a jerk of a boyfriend or significant other or husband and has stayed with that person, believing in a false “happily ever after”? Women believe that their goodness can overcome the horrible character of another and they will bend and compromise to make things work. Women sacrifice a lot for relationships and it’s because of unrealistic ideals like the relationships set forth in Disney movies that makes all women at one time or another, fools.

Cinderella is the classic story of a damsel with a crappy life being rescued by a prince whom she meets and he instantly falls in love with her for her beauty. Why did the stepdaughters have to look ugly? Being beautiful doesn’t guarantee a prince. And such high expectations of making someone fall in love with you at first sight because of your looks is very harsh on women everywhere who aren’t perfect porcelain dolls. Physical beauty doesn’t guarantee things in common or an intellectual connection to someone else. Physical beauty will fade over time. What then?

Beauty and the Beast is a classic tale of a girl being forced against her will to endure a horrible beast who has trapped her inside his home. While the Disney version ends with Belle and the Beast, who is really a handsome prince in disguise, lives happily ever after after she breaks the spell by confessing her love for him with a kiss, reality isn’t like that. Many women stay with abusive men and spouses, believing that their love will change that person’s beastliness into something better, someone better. Being forced against your will by someone else to do anything you don’t want to do is wrong. A relationship shouldn’t be like that. There shouldn’t be one person in total control of the other person.

The Little Mermaid is a classic tale of a girl changing her physical self for a guy that she likes. Many women today change their physical appearance for men. Many think that if they were skinnier, if they had clearer skin, if they had a bigger booty, if they looked beautiful, then they will catch the man of their dreams. Unfortunately, changing yourself for someone else doesn’t make that person like you. In the classic fairy tale, the prince actually marries someone else and the little mermaid commits suicide by drowning in the sea. While this seems harsh and unrealistic, many women have gone to self harm for a man. Some have even committed suicide. Although Disney’s version is a “happily ever after”, the actual fairy tale teaches women a big lesson of not changing yourself for someone else because even after all those changes, you might find yourself disappointed and your man gone to someone else who did nothing to change herself. Be happy with who you are.

Hercules is a tale about a woman who sold her soul to Hades (the devil) to save her lover and he ran off on her. Women desperate to keep their men or to try and “save” their men might do anything and everything, even something as extreme as selling themselves into bondage and slavery to another. This is a story of where a woman does everything for a man and in the end, he still leaves her. Love isn’t about what we can do for someone else. Love is a two way street where both parties have to compromise instead of one person doing all the bending. There should be equal amounts of love and give and take from both.

Tangled is the classic rebellion story of a girl who disobeys her parents and runs off with a stranger. While Rapunzel’s “mother” isn’t her actual biological mother, at that point in the story, she believes that’s the only mother she has. Yet, when Flynn appears, she runs off with him to see the world. Back when I was growing up, it was much safer to be around people you didn’t know. Now, it’s terrifying. Children are kidnapped, teenagers go missing, and it’s not a safe place at all. So what kind of relationship comes out of a bunch of partying, singing, and wondering around in places you don’t know? It sounds a lot like many women today who on a whim, follows some guy they don’t know, drinks, parties, and travels from place to place. While most of those stories ends badly, there are some that end halfway okay with the woman unharmed. Rapunzel’s disobedience is justified by mother Gothel not being her real mother, but what does that tell all the adopted children of the world? That it’s okay to not listen and follow rules because they’re not your real parents? Whether by blood or not, family is still family. And strangers are still strangers. It’s unhealthy to run off with anyone you just met.

Frozen is a tale of feminism on the loose. While it’s a good thing to not marry someone you just met or to not wait for a man to save you, the whole “let it go” propaganda is crap. You’re not going to be right about your life the first time you decide to think on your own and do what you want. Actually, that really just gets a lot of people into trouble. We learn from others and from their mistakes. Deciding something on whim because you suddenly feel freer without someone else you believe is holding you back may not actually be a wise decision. Elsa was going to live in the middle of nowhere as an ice hermit with a magic snowman as a guard dog! That’s not freedom. That’s trapping yourself in a fake illusion of freedom since you’re still isolated from everyone else. There’s no difference in her being locked up in her room or locked up in her new ice castle in the mountains. She’s still alone. And like her, a lot of women don’t have relationships. Their time is consumed with their jobs and businesses and things that they’re doing which doesn’t require a husband, a family, or kids. It’s okay to be independent and self sufficient, but don’t go overboard much. While you might die a rich, successful old maid and be happy with that, a lot of women want a significant other and a family and children. Also, be careful about people and manipulation. Don’t marry someone you just met. Get to know them first. And don’t believe everything from every charming person who tries to charm their way into your life. Most of the time, they do have an ulterior motive for being so nice and so kind to you. Be safe and test everyone accordingly to your standards for relationships.

In conclusion, there’s a lot of harmful relationships out there. It doesn’t always come with a “happily ever after”. This is what Disney taught me about relationships:

1. Physical beauty and good looks isn’t everything and it cannot get you everything.

2. If someone in the relationship is completely controlling and always angry, get help. That’s not a healthy relationship.

3. Never change yourself for someone else. If you choose to make any changes, do it for you.

4. Do not risk everything for someone whom you have already risked everything for to keep them with you. People should like you for you and not for what you can do for them.

5. Don’t run off with strangers.

6. Don’t marry someone you just met in a day. Date for a while, get to know them, and learn about them before you make that step.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on November 4, 2014 in Diary

 

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A Conversation About God

This is a conversation between me and my good friend John about God. He gave me permission to repost his comments on Facebook here on my blog. I really liked how we both had an intelligent conversation without all the arguing that mostly comes with discussing religion. Thanks John! ^_^

  • Xao Thao That’s not true. And those reference links–one went to a Dutch YouTube page which has no consequence on the matter and the other went nowhere. New Testament documents are 99.5% accurate in relation to each other being 24,000 copies, compared to many other ancient manuscripts such as Homer’s Illiad which stands at a mere 95% accuracy out of 643 copies. Actual reference links for you: http://www.str.org/…/is-the-new-testament-text-reliable… and http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/bibleorg.html

    About Mission & Values Ambassador Model STR Staff…
    str.org
  • Xao Thao It’s a lack of knowledge that destroys people, so has God said this very same thing and it’s proven to be true.
  • Xao Thao Not true either. Hell was created for the devil and his angels.
  • John Behrent Try this, then.

    John Behrent's photo.
  • Xao Thao Not true either. There was a reason why He flooded the world. And He didn’t kill everyone. He saved Noah and his wife, their sons and their wives.
  • Xao Thao You can throw me more memes made up by ignorant people to which the masses believe whole heartedly without reason nor actual knowledge. Popular opinion doesn’t doesn’t make something wrong right.
  • John Behrent Let’s think about this for a minute. Let’s go on the supposition that God is all-knowing, and always has been. That means that on Day One, he knew the consequences of putting the Tree of Knowledge in the garden of Eden. He knew the serpent would tempt Eve after he forbade her and Adam from eating from it. But he put it there anyway, then gave them the boot for doing what he knew they’d do. Does that really sound like something a good, kind, loving deity would do? Further, if he’s all-knowing, why did he spend so much time testing people’s faith? He knew who was loyal to him and who wasn’t, right? Or is he really imperfect and flawed?
  • John Behrent And also, I don’t care how much you want to glorify innocent sacrifice. If God is all-knowing and all-powerful, not to mention a loving deity, he’d have gotten out of his great cosmic Barcalounger and given Jesus a hand, instead of letting him be tortured to death. NO loving father let’s one of his children suffer.
  • Xao Thao It’s because people have free will and the ability to choose. Just because a parent knows that a child will choose wrong doesn’t mean that that parent doesn’t love that child. And because a good parent would discipline their children when they do wrong, it by no means mean that that parent loves their children any less. Parents allow children to make their own mistakes because that is the only way that any child will learn and grow. Free will gives independence to people. They have the ability to do what they want to do and therefore, even if a parent wanted to hold on to a child and protect them from all the wrong things in the world, that child will find ways to do them regardless. So yes, punishment is indeed needed to correct wrong behavior so that children grow up wiser and do less wrong things.
  • Xao Thao There are no innocent sacrifices. Because of Adam and Eve, all have sinned and are born in sin. Therefore, Jesus was needed as a pure and holy sacrifice because he IS God in the flesh. A loving deity is also a fierce deity that protects and is jealous. Mankind wants to mold God down to our standards so that we are able to understand Him, but He knew our inability to be anywhere close to His great magnificence and became flesh for us so He could understand us. He suffered for us. And yet, without that suffering, millions more would be damned today.
  • John Behrent Firstly, the Eden thing proves that God set Adam and Eve up. They were the Bible’s first patsies. And secondly, I don’t see how ‘allowing a child to make their own mistakes’ equates to being okay with someone else torturing your own child to death. The fact that God did nothing makes me doubt his omnipotence.
  • John Behrent Xao, look around you, really look at the world. Look at what politicians and the wealthy are doing to it, and to innocent people. Without remorse, pity, or regret. Can you really tell me we’re not damned anyway, with the state of the world? And still, God does…nothing.
  • Xao Thao The fact that mankind wrestles with God daily and in their ignorance and arrogance (seemingly, they believe they know better than Him who created them), makes me doubt why God bothers to save. However, despite my own harsh opinions of humanity, it’s done. Salvation is here for those who will accept it. We can argue God’s goodness or people believing that He does nothing while the world crumbles and rots to pieces, but it is because of US that the world is in shambles. People want to blame God for bad things that other bad people do. The Crusades is often used as a device against God saying He allowed millions to be slaughtered under His name. No, that’s not even true. The Crusades were a battle campaign created by wicked men in whose hearts were thoughts of evil continually, who under the false guise that God was their leader, sent out and persecuted Christians as their main targets out of the millions that they’ve slaughtered in cold blood. There is a Just God in heaven and believe me that He does not turn a blind eye to all the evil and wickedness of mankind. There is a Judgement Day for all and whether it satisfies you or me that “decent” people never get anything good in their lives while the wicked prosper, it is not up for us to deal out judgement. Vengeance is the Lord’s and He will repay.
  • John Behrent No, man doesn’t wrestle with God. Man wrestles against man. Why? For control. For power. For objects and titles that won’t follow them to the next world anyway. Let’s just be honest, we’re not going to agree on a lot in this conversation. I’m not even a Christian of any stripe. But I’m at peace with the fact that that’s what’s right for you. Are we cool?
  • Xao Thao We’re always cool. I thought we were having a really good conversation that I was going to copy everything down and save it. John, man wrestles with God every day when man believes that they know what God should be doing for them or for the world. We want God to do things our way when we want them to be done and then we throw a tantrum and say God is unloving when we don’t get what we want. God knows what is best for us. And it is because of this that certain things are allowed in our life and certain things are not. Suffering, yes, is allowed in all of our lives, not as a test to how much we love Him, but a test to how much He loves us that He will in all our trials and troubles, make a way out for us. We are not defeated. We are still here. And no matter how bad or sad or mad we are or the world around us is, we will overcome in Him. People don’t have to be Christians to believe in God. I always knew God existed as a little girl, growing up in a household full of shamans, and I wasn’t a Christian until 6 years ago. Everything in my life had to go exactly as they did for me to reach the point where I would choose Him. And I’ve rejected God many, many times. So many times, I can’t count. But, His great mercy saved me. And albeit, I’m not a good Christian, but I know better. Meaning I know what I should be like. Many Christians will be in hell and they will be very surprised. Being a Christian doesn’t mean conforming to a large religion that in today’s world, conforms to the world and their beliefs, but being a Christian means following Christ. People can be Christians without church, without organized religion, without all that extra mankind made mess of what Christianity should be like or should be about. I pray one day that everyone is saved, although I know that will never be true. Despite whether I like someone or not (I’m pretty antisocial and mean), it would make me happy to see less people in hell and more in heaven, even if they were supposedly my worst enemies. *hugs*
  • Wendy Booth Just gonna throw this curve ball in here…at no particular person. Religion is SO SO different than spirituality. Spirituality is just a partial experience of all-that-is. All spiritual experience is incomplete, because it is not possible to know the whole of God. I’m inclined to believe that a truly spiritual person will (understanding his/her experiences are so incomplete) very warily eye someone or something who would deem to have specific details of things he/she could not have experienced him/herself. That’s not to imply that ‘faith’ is a bad thing. But even faith should be seeded in some fact and reason. At its best moments (which are rare), religion is never more than a very DULL reflection of any God – in a tiny little mirror made by the hand of a tiny little man.
 
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Posted by on November 2, 2014 in Diary

 

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Halloween and Other Things

It’s Halloween and that means that every kid in America will be all dressed up in awesome costumes going trick or treating from door to door from late afternoon well into the night. At least that was the scenario when I was growing up. Door to door trick or treating now is almost unheard of. Instead, you have giant car to car gatherings, mostly organized by a church at a safely lit church parking lot, where kids dress up and go from car trunk to car trunk to get treats.

I used to trick or treat with friends and neighbors without adult supervision. We’d go all over our neighborhood and have a great time trick or treating. We didn’t worry about opened candy or being kidnapped. We didn’t worry about going into a house and never being able to come out again. Back in those days, we did fundraisers for school by going door to door alone. That was because we knew our neighbors. We actually talked to our neighbors. Granted, we didn’t know personal details about each house and each family, but we knew enough to know what kind of people they were and if we could trust them. Back then, trust was easy. It was never questioned. It was never questioned if the lone man in the blue house was some creepy pervert or that the old woman in the red brick house was really some horrid witch who ate children for her supper. Trust was a given thing in neighborhoods, even with the neighbors who didn’t like anyone at all. But in today’s world, everything is different. And trust is no longer a given. It’s a very rare thing now to have.

What is it with churches planning Halloween events? I understand the need to make settings safe for children and your entire flock, but shouldn’t Halloween not be celebrated by churches? It’s not the same as having people who celebrate Halloween that go to church. Churches celebrating Halloween gives it the okay for everyone in those churches to compromise their beliefs and add in other beliefs.

Is it hypocritical of me to even say that? I’m a Christian. I don’t celebrate Halloween (unless people want to give me candy), but I wish everyone a Happy Halloween all the time. So in essence, I’m celebrating Halloween too. I don’t want to be the kind of person who totally pretends that other people’s beliefs don’t exist, or worse, condemns people to hell for what they believe in. So is that what churches are doing, celebrating Halloween so that they don’t look like jerks?

However, being a jerk is a cool and amusing thing in today’s society. Viral videos of people being mean are the trend and sadly, there are people making videos trying to top those videos.

Insulting people, making fun of people, and bullying people isn’t a funny thing. Yet, we do it all the time. We do it in families, in friendships, in relationships and we think it’s super funny because we laugh at other people’s expenses. The saying goes, “Only I have the right to make fun of my family and tease them, but if you do it, I will hurt you“. Since when has it been okay to be mean and horrible to your family, but nice to everyone else? Worse, since when has it been okay to be upset at other people doing the same thing you’re doing to the same person you do it to? That’s hypocritical too.

I have a big family. I was very mean when I was younger. I had a lot of anger. I had a lot of unresolved issues. I get mad now when my family is being mean to one another. I get mad now when my friends do the same thing.

Rachel used to call everyone a bitch, a slut, a whore, and a multitude of other degrading things. It was the way she had always spoken to others and others accepted that about her. I tried to accept that about her too, but I eventually had to say no. It wasn’t okay to joke around and call someone names, even if all her other friends were okay with it. I wasn’t okay with it. She was very mad that I even told her to stop calling me names, but slowly, she did stop. And she stopped calling everyone else names too. She stopped allowing people to call her names as well.

Most people don’t realize that all the “jokes” and all the “harmless humor” in insulting yourself and others actually do affect you and others. Everyone starts to believe it. And while most have adapted to throw on a thick skin and pretend that words don’t hurt, they do. Name calling like that degrades people. And it makes their self esteem and self worth go down. It’s a form of manipulation hidden behind a smile and laughter. Much like many forms of manipulation hidden the same way, they all affect what we think about ourselves, how we feel about ourselves, and that if everyone else was like us and felt like us, then we’re not alone and we’re not as bad as we feel about ourselves.

What is a good medium between harmless teasing and insulting masquerading as teasing?

I don’t know. I think we all go back to that double standard that we were taught as kids that it was okay to be mean to people you care about, but to be nice to everyone else. That double standard isn’t right.

Since when is calling someone fat or chubby out of love make calling anyone else fat or chubby okay? Since when is calling someone an arrogant jerk and teasing them about it out of love make calling anyone else an arrogant jerk and teasing them about it okay? Since when are we so preoccupied with tearing other people down, tearing ourselves down, that that becomes the new normal? That it becomes the new okay? All of these things that we do, all the insulting and teasing and bullying are tearing people’s self esteem and self worth down, whether we love them or not, whether they’re family or not, whether they’re our best friend or not. It’s not okay. It’s not okay to hurt others and ourselves.

I’m off on a tangent here.

I missed the good old days when things were easier and nothing was so blurred that it’s hypocritical religious political societal bs.

 
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Posted by on October 31, 2014 in Diary

 

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Perfect Timing

I’m watching 2 Broke Girls and in the last episode of Season One where Max and Caroline attend the gala in hopes of cornering Martha Stewart to try their homemade cupcakes, Max meets Johnny as she’s coming out of the bathroom. He tells her that they’ve gotten far in their careers to be able to attend such a high class event and she responds that they haven’t gotten far at all (in their relationship). She asked why and he said, “timing, I guess”.

It reminds me of how important timing really is, not only when it comes to relationships, but to everything. If we were just a bit early or a bit late for some things in life, our lives could’ve been totally different. And I’m not talking about being early or late by months or years, but merely by hours or days.

Back in high school, I was tricked into meeting a guy named Jay. He was a super skinny tall white goth kid who did indeed live in a creepy house with an energy vortex of some kind (you can feel the energy when you’re there–it was crazy, but real). He had a hot roommate who was Irish and had freckles and red hair…but that’s a different story. Anyhow, Jay was this pretty awesome artist and I was expecting my friend Will to drop me off at home, not take me to someone else’s house.

I met Keera for the first time at Jay’s house. She was tricked by whoever brought her there as well. She thought she was going to the movies. Instead, we both ended up at a house with a bunch of horny teenagers and neither of us cared one bit for them or the hormones. And since neither of us did drive and had cars and could leave, we were forced to stay and meet.

It was by perfect timing that I happened to find Will and reminded him that he promised he’d drop me off at home that day. He was literally about to leave when I found him and if I had been a couple minutes late in getting to him after the bell rang, I would’ve missed out on Jay and Keera and my life would’ve been different. Neither Jay nor Keera attended school where I did (Jay was out of school as he was in his mid twenties) and neither one of them lived anywhere in the city I lived in.

A few minutes late, and I would’ve never had stories that spanned three books about the Otherworld and all those who lived there. I would’ve never had Demonico or any of those characters and all the crazy that came with it.

How much of our lives is purely coincidental? How much of it is actually perfect timing? Timing is indeed everything.

I once worked with a guy who had the coolest name I’ve ever heard of: Zebediah. It’s not a common name. We’d call him Zeb for short. He played baseball and he’d always invite me to his games, but I never wanted to go. He wanted me to see him play, but I wasn’t ready for any relationships. I always turned him down. He was a great guy: funny, smart, old fashioned–perfect…but the timing wasn’t. I honestly can’t imagine what life would be like now if I had said yes back then and just accepted his offer.

Life itself is a series of perfect timing. Everything actually works together, whether for good or bad, to control our lives and move it in a direction that has purpose and meaning.

It’s like hurricane Hugo of ’89 or some time way back in the past when I was still a single digit in age. We had this gigantic tree right next to our house and it was so big and so strong that nothing could move it. That night, it actually crashed into our house and smashed everything. My mom, being scared alone with young kids in a storm while my dad worked 3rd shift, took all of us kids and packed us into the living room where we slept on the floor. We actually survived the gigantic tree crashing into our house and smashing everything into bits. Hugo wasn’t even a bad storm and normally, my mom wouldn’t move us all to the living room, but the tree went right through my baby sister’s crib. If we had all just gone to sleep that night like normal, we would’ve all been dead or in the very least, hurt very badly which would’ve affected the rest of our lives. I would’ve probably never been able to write stories that needed to be told.

I know for a fact that my life is a bunch of hit and misses–anything and everything from good and bad luck, to the people in my life or those who have been in my life, to how I’m even still alive today.

A few minutes sooner, being unbuckled in the back seat of my best friend’s boyfriend’s car and sitting right in the middle with a giant gap that I easily fit through when we hit head on with a car that suddenly made a left turn, I would’ve flew right out that front windshield window had time not literally slowed down enough so I could see what was coming before it happened and brace myself by spreading my arms and legs wide and holding on to the back of their chairs. There wasn’t time to actually put on a seat belt. To be honest, I wasn’t even paying any attention to the front of the car. If time hadn’t literally slowed down, I wouldn’t be here today. And as crazy as that sounded, I actually survived a horrible car crash that put the driver, who had on a seat belt, in a coma for five days. He was hurt that bad. The entire front of the car was totaled. And to make things worse, it was Mother’s Day. Christina’s boyfriend took us shopping to get presents for our moms. I was sixteen.

For some reason, we normally only look at relationships in relation to timing. If I met this person sooner, they would be with me and not someone else. But perfect timing in fact determines every aspect of our lives. Perfect timing determines who we meet, what we do, how we do it, who we affect, who affects us, and basically everything in our lives is measured by a timeline we cannot compute into mathematical equations.

A few minutes later, and I would’ve missed meeting Michael who is the most amazing person I’ve ever known. He adores the hell out of me (literally, although he’s Asatru? I forget.Whatever his religion is, it isn’t Christian) and I adore him right back.

A few minutes later, and Shaun would’ve committed suicide.

Our lives are measured by time. That time, however, isn’t linear. Time isn’t a straight line. It is a messed up web of perfect that I haven’t even begun figuring out yet. Everything in our lives is perfect timing, even when we cannot see the perfection in all the imperfection of things gone wrong and things gone right.

 
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Posted by on October 29, 2014 in Diary

 

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