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“Always Do, rather than Not-Do”

My friend has a philosophy: Always Do, rather than Not-Do. “You remember the things you do,” he explains, “but it’s not like you look back and reminisce all those nights sitting on a couch.”

Wednesday night was cold and rainy, but we made it to a free gig at Folk Club at Oxford Arts Factory. We did rather than didn’t-do. And I’m so glad… it was a memorable night. The music was magic.

Jack Carty was the first of the line up and in my opinion, while the other two artists – Wes Carr and The Falls – were great, Jack’s offered something else. His lyrics, energy and integrity… words cannot describe. There were two moments where I heard myself think “this is what it means to be human.”

There was a sense of authenticity, open and real and might I say spiritual, about Jack. He’d got in touch with a part of what (as cliche as it sounds) being alive, being human, is all about. I’ve had his CDs on repeat ever since.


If you get a chance to check out Jack live, then DO.

Ditto for other decisions and options in your life. It’s a simple philosophy: “always do, rather than not-do” — you never know what will come out of it..


Life is short, break the rules…

“Life is short, break the rules, forgive quickly, kiss slowly, love truly, laugh uncontrollably, and never regret anything that made you smile. Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

~ Mark Twain ~

Grandfather Mountain, North Carolina.


Loving What Is

How often do you think or say “I love that I’m sick” or “I love it that I got a parking fine.” Never. Well I don’t. But that was the message I took away my conversation with three inspiring minds I had dinner with on Wednesday tonight: Love What Is.

Now I know I’ve spoken about this before. I distinctly remember writing about the need to accept everything just as it is, when I thought I was going to die in the back of a crazy driver’s loud-honking car winding up the mountains in India. But as the busyness of life takes over, you can never have too many reminders of positive affirmations. And I think to love what is going a step further than acceptance. Loving what is, even the shitty stuff we face, really means embracing it. And when we embrace our pains, they disappear. But is that easier said than done?

As the antipasto was placed on the table, my friend made a suggestion:

“Name the one biggest thing you need to let go of.”

The first thing that came to my mind was Kombi Xee, and the overnight loss. Attached to my kombi was an image of freedom, not to mention the $5k supposed to fund a trip to Europe I want to do on my way to America later this year. I shared the story with my new friends, and the fear I have associated with my stupid spontaneous decision – I thought my intuition was telling me to buy her. Still who the heck doesn’t get a mechanical check on a 36 year old car? (Note – I will get to the full kombi story share some other day).

The question bothering me in that moment was: Should I keep her in, or should I exchange her for peanuts?

“Now I suggest this to you… you have to let go of your attachment to stories. Freedom is found inside you, not in the kombi. You need to let it go. Let go of any fears. Accept you’ve lost the money, and do whatever feels right to you.”

It’s not easy to let go of things you love. And while I understand the need to let go of stories, and my kombi, I just don’t know if I’m ready to. I’m trying to listen to my intuition, to be open to the signs of the universe, but sometimes those signs are simply unclear.

“I love that my kombi broke down a few days after I bought it.” I’m saying it, but I don’t mean it. I really wish I got at least a few months of fun out of it, didn’t lose my money, and didn’t have to borrow my sister’s old car that I’ll have to get registered in less than a month.

“I love that this kombi experience taught me a lesson to be careful in the future.” I’m saying it but I don’t mean it. While I’ll definitely get a mechanical check next time I buy a second hand car, I’m sure this experience won’t stop my tendency to make spontaneous crazy decisions when I feel so inclined.

Let’s try again. “I love that my kombi broke down a few days after I bought it.”

The only way I might mean it, is if at some point, some future point of hindsight, I see a purpose for it. Maybe I should put it at my grandmas house in storage for a year until I can have time and money to get it back on the road.

Let’s try again: let it go. Whatever happens doesn’t matter. The money is gone. It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter. Kombi or no kombi, everything will work out.

If you let go of the stories that you are attached to, if you let go of fear, if you let go of expectations, and if you live every moment with acceptance and love for all that is, you will lead a happy life.

I still don’t know what I’m going to do with this kombi. Should I keep it or should I sell it? Can I sell it, or is Xee now a worthless piece of junk? I suppose if I ask the universe, the answer will soon become clear… Either way I have to try, to love this situation just as it is.

Yoga – always a good decision

Tonight I had a decision to make: dinner with mum, PeaceBeliever Tribute to John Lennon at Oxford Arts Factory, bed (I was up late blogging last night), try to keep awake and study, or go to a yoga class. My body craved the hot room, long stretches, mental relaxation of yoga – but it would be at the cost of all the other options, and the bother of driving and parking. All of this I could be avoided if I just sit on my ass and don’t go. But I did. And I was reminded (once again) that yoga is always a good decision.

I don’t know how I let myself forget – how weeks go by with my prioritising social events or even whatever TV series I’m working through at the time – instead of making it to class.

This class – at Body Mind Life, in Surry Hills – is particularly great. To make things even better, tonight this amazing (and perfect bodied, dreadlocked) yoga dude brought a guitar and he and the female instructor sang some chants.

It is quite an incredible feeling to be in a room full of around 50 people humming “om” together (the vibration of the universe) and singing about “shanti” (which means peace). So I might not have made the Lennon Peace Tribute but I did I return home feeling once again “at peace”.

I had forgotten how great that feeling is.

To be honest I had been starting to wonder if “Peace” was an outdated word – with all the baggage that seems to be attached to it. Peace seemed to bring to mind fairly boring images of nothingness while and Conflict brought to mind images of adventure and excitement. The definition of Peace (or “Positive Peace” to be more exact) in Peace and Conflict Studies is a Peace that values Conflict but not at the expense of Violence or Injustice. So… in the pursuit of Peace by this definition, I was starting to think that maybe we needed a more exciting new term.

After tonight I see Peace differently.

Tonight I am reminded that while we need Conflict to have Peace, we also need Peace to have Conflict. We need BOTH. While Conflict can be great, it does need some moments of Peace to balance it out.

Tonight I feel calm but energised, alive without-a-worry-in-the-world. Feeling at peace with oneself is a very good feeling. So if your life is as fast-changing and competitive as mine then I recommend that an hour or two of pure nothingness (which is not the same as watching a tv show) is always a good decision.

Are you happy?

“Are you happy?” A friend asked me a couple of months ago.

“Yes, of course.” I answered without a second thought. Things were up-in-the-air at the time, and I was struggling with this and that, but I was enjoying all of that. For sure I was happy.

I returned the question, “Are you happy?” and was shocked to hear her answer: “NO.” She went on to explain that she will be happy “one day” but right now, because of this reason and that reason, overall she wasn’t really very happy.

I guess it’s all that “live in the ‘now’, because the ‘now’ is all we ever have” – the ‘present’ is a present, a gift, so we should enjoy it – type of Eckhart Tolle / Deepak Choprah books I’ve read or audio books I’ve listened to, this is so engrained in my head that my daily decisions, big and small, are guided by it.

While I have my moments of frustration and the occasional days I think of as mini episodes of depression, I can’t imagine being in an state of unhappiness for a long period of time. If I’m not happy, I blame only myself for letting myself get to wherever I have gotten. Then I figure out what I need to change, and I change it, true to the flowchart above.

Is this selfish? I don’t think so. The happier I am, the happier the people around me will be. No one likes a wet rag, or a person full of regret and gloom. It’s that over-flowing wine glass analogy again – keep filling up your own and it will flow into others glasses too. I struggle to imagine another way of life.

I guess I knew that not everyone lives this way. The thing is, when you are always inside your own head, it’s easy to forget that not everyone approaches life in the same way you do.

My friend’s answer snapped me back into the wider reality: not everyone is happy.

I have to wonder: if you are not happy, why don’t you change?


I came across this picture on a friend’s facebook feed. It has the name of the creator on it although I can’t make out what it says.

To do, or not to do? Avoiding regret.

When making a decision I ask myself :

1. Will I regret doing it?

If I answer “yes”, I don’t do it. (Reason being, if I am pretty sure I’m going to regret something I think it would be pretty silly to disregard that intuition.)

If the answer is “maybe” or “no” I ask myself:

2. Will I regret not doing it?

Now if I answer “yes” then I do it. (For the same reason as above.)

Now the selection criteria gets a little more confusing:

If the answer to both questions is “maybe” then I do it. (Reason being I think it better to regret something you did, the regret something you didn’t do.)

If the answer to question 2 is “no” and the the answer to the question 1 is “maybe” then I don’t it. (If I know I’m not going to regret not doing it, then it’s not worth the chance of regretting doing it.)

If the answer to question 2 is “maybe” and the answer to the question 1 is “no” then I do it. (If I know I’m not going to regret doing it, then it’s not worth the chance of regretting not doing it.)

If the answer to both questions is “no” then I will have a cold shower. (I need to wake up – if the consequences are so trivial I should have done it already.)

Hmmm I wonder if my new little criteria makes sense to anyone other than me…?

And I guess it doesn’t always apply – especially if you tend to do before you think, eg shaving my head.. that wasn’t exactly a planned out decision but I didn’t regret it (at least not after the first day or two)… That being said I have no plans to do it again any time soon.


A fear of death. A fear of life.

Juan, my new friend on Galapagos islands saw the look of horror on my face when I saw the iguana carcass.

“It’s part of life,” he shrugged.


As time on the islands passed I would see many more examples of the cycle of life and death, from the crab shell above to baby birds, to the bones of a sea-lion below. What struck me more than the death was the life that these animals live.

On these magical islands, animals live their lives to their full potential – they live their lives without fear. And they accept their fates with grace.


Well, at least that’s what they told me anyway… anyway moving on.

So I’m learning to ride a scooter. Why? Environmental reasons? Monetary reasons? Parking reasons? … Actually, to be completely honest, my main motivation is that scooters are simply SO INCREDIBLY FUN!!! The lesser impact scooters have on the environment, on my pocket, and on my sanity when it comes to parking, are nice little added bonuses.

Today was my first day of the pre-learner course. It was like rekindling a lost love. Air and space surrounding my body as I sped along (at probably no more than 4km per hour so far) whisked me away to some other state of being. Was I once a bird flying in the sky? Was I once a horse galloping in a wild herd? Are these animals more me than I realise? I love scooters. I can’t wait to have my own: to ride to the beach, to uni, to the pilates classes I’ll one day get off my arse and start teaching again.

Alongside scootering it’s been an exciting few days. Yesterday I received an offer to present a paper at a peace conference in Mumbai. Considering I really don’t have to be in Australia for the month of May I figure I may as well backpack around India while I’m there. Maybe I could even write a sequel to my yet-to-be-published book… Ah dreams, gotta have them!

Backpacking alone around India, scootering around the city – am I afraid of killing myself in the process? No, not really. And if I do die, so be it.

I am NOT afraid of dying. I AM afraid of NOT LIVING LIFE TO IT’S FULL.

When it’s my time to go, I’m ready. Is that weird?

Death. What do you feel when you hear this word? Death. The last chapter of our life. Does it make you feel scared? Sad? Insecure? Happy?

Death, the only absolute in life, is what many people live their lives in fear of. But why? Is death really so scary? It’s completely unavoidable. One day it will happen to you. And that is that. Is there really any point in worrying about it?

Life & death. Two concepts completely meaningless without the other. Death is the inevitable consequence of life. Without death life on earth would never have evolved. It is through death that adaptation can occur. It is through death that new generations can become more suitable to environments than the previous. It is through death that life survives, thrives, and has lead to the diverse and beautiful flora and fauna that surrounds us and that we are a part of. We have been born into the body that we currently dwell inside, and eventually we will leave that body. When? No one knows. What will it feel like to be dead? People can pretend they know, but if we are sincerely honest with ourselves, we all know that no one knows this either.

I think of death as the ultimate peace. Call it “Enlightenment”. “Heaven.” “Oneness with God”. “Rejoining the Soul of the Universe.” “Becoming one with everything that is.” “Returning to a state of nothingness.” … living in a state where there is no separateness. No more ego. No fear-driven consciousness. A place of Balance. Of equilibrium. A place where opposites cease to exist. That doesn’t sound so bad does it? A little boring maybe, but as we live on through the consciousness of everything else that exists, and as we live on in the memory of the lives we lived – death, in my mind, really isn’t so bad.

But on the other hand to not live my present conscious to it’s full potential; to live a life that harms the universe; to deny opportunities; to regret decisions; to not enjoy the moments along the way… that, to me, is far worse than death. That, to me, is torturous. But death…

As long as I have lived each day of my life to it’s full – when it is my time to go I will farewell my consciousness with grace.

A few more of my favourite quotes from The Alchemist:

“There was a major battle nearby, and a number of wounded were brought back to the camp. The dead soldiers were replaced by others, and life went on. Death doesn’t change anything, the boy thought.”

“There was no need to be concerned about dying – the Soul of the World awaited him, and he would soon be a part of it. And, tomorrow, his enemy would also be a part of that Soul.”

“The desert takes our men from us, and they don’t always return” she said. “We know that, and we are used to it. Those who don’t return become a part of the clouds, a part of the animals that hid in the ravines and of the water that comes from the earth. They become part of everything… they become the Soul of the World.”

“I have inside me the winds, the deserts, the oceans, the stars, and everything created in the universe.”

If I haven’t mentioned it already, this simple allegorical tale is a very effective one, and a worthwhile quick little read.

When it comes down to it we are all going to the same place. We are all a part of the same incredible creation. Separateness is but a temporary illusion.

The inter-connections between humans, all life, and the planet we inhabit, are evident. Now all we have to do is  open our eyes and see the deeper truths behind reality. As we do I believe we will find our fears (of death and of life) will subside, allowing us to embrace life’s miraculous moments to each moment’s full potential.

Creativism – a philosophy for life

Creativism… the beginnings of a new philosophy, with positive implications on social, political and economic theories.

Ok – with that amazing very creative photograph that won “Portrait of the Year 2009” by  Sydney photographer Pippin Schembri – I now divert your attention to something close to my heart – for now I’m calling it “Creativism”, but it seems that “Potentialism” also fills the bill. (Click here to see Potentialist version of below)

I think you’ll find there’s nothing really new about what you’re about to read … we are all so connected that I have this feeling when you finish reading this, you’ll feel like I’ve just typed out a transcript of your own mind. I may be wrong – all of the following may make no sense to anyone other than myself… Anyway, I hope you enjoy, and please post your thoughts!

Just to clarify – this is NOT to be confused with “Creationism” which refers to a belief in a 6-day creation 6000 years ago. NO. Creativism is about CREATIVITY and the role WE play in the ONGOING CREATION PROCESS of our universe. These ideas are a work-in-progress (that I wrote one year ago and haven’t touched since) hence I thought I’d put out there. Everything in life always seems to be a work-in-progress, so carpe diem

Creativism: a philosophy for life

Discovering your ultimate creative potential: you as your individual conscious, you as your society and you as the universe – playing your role in the creation of a future reality you desire.


What is a Creativist?

A Creativist is someone who sees Creativity as the expression of the Divine Creator present in all life and the universe. Creativity is humanity’s source of greatest pleasure, satisfaction, and act of generosity. Creativity expresses your individual consciousness and shares it with others, simultaneously expressing the collective conscious and providing avenues for your individual conscious to learn.

Expressions of Creativity:

Creativity is not only for those left-brainers; creativity is for everyone. Analyse the sources of pleasure in your life, you will probably find they involve some form of creation that you contribute to. For example:

–       art of any kind: photography, draw, write,

–       in numbers, in science, in business: look for creative solutions to problems

–       food and wine: play with life’s little pleasures

–       breathe: take pleasure in every breath, it feeds your cells and contributes to the production of new ones

–       look for improvement: in every aspect of your life, each little bit of creative expression adds value

–       in interior and exterior of your house, fashion, self expression

–       make babies: the most amazing creation a human can make


Syncretic paradigms:

1. The purpose of life is to discover and fulfil your creative potential in a way that brings the most benefit to others.

  1. This is the purpose of all life
  2. This is “living God’s will”
  3. This is expressing Who You Truly Are and Who You Want To Be
  4. This is discovering your inner being, your intuition, and listening to it
  5. As Shakespeare said, “Above all things, to thyself be true”

2. We are defined not only by our separate identity, but are in fact a collective identity of humanity, of living organisms and of the universe.

  1. In the same way that our body is not separate from the living micro atoms that make it up
  2. In the same way that science describes all matter, us included, as made of the same substance: atoms, which at quantum levels flash in and out of physical existence
  3. In the same way the Buddhists imagine God to be everything
  4. In the same way Christians describe God, as three forms: the father, the son and the Holy Spirit, yet one God; simultaneously omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent ie all-knowing, all-powerful and present everywhere.
  5. These ideas do  not contradict – they complement. They are each other’s missing link – the way such abstract concepts maybe by physically actualised.

3. Peace is a state of harmony, when the body, mind and spirit are united

Key principles:

4. Listen to “God”

  1. Thoughts – ideas, images, and words that come into your mind
  2. Intuition – the deep feeling inside that says ‘yes’ or ‘no’
  3. Omens/signs – notice the things in the world around you that you are conscious of at each particular point in time
  4. Words of other people – be it in conversation, a religious, fiction or nonfiction text, or a song on the radio, everything that enters your world is God communicating with you

5. Minimize fear and maximize love

  1. Fear leads to insecurity, hate, and greed
  2. Love leads to security, generosity, and kindness

6. Commit to the process not the result –

  1. Creative potential is infinite and there is no end. An end means a beginning, and the circle of life continues.
  2. Living in the present – it’s a present, a gift from God, pre-sent to you as an accumulation of all your life experiences and thoughts.

7. Realise that all problems can be solved with:

  1. Will – desire to solve the problem
  2. Honesty – about everything
  3. Empathy – understanding where the other is coming from
  4. Creativity – finding solutions

Transform and transcend:

8. Equal care for self and others

  1. When we understand the inseparable connectedness between ourselves and others, we realise our happiness depends on the happiness of everyone else.
  2. Hence our goal: to maximise our collaborative creative potential – expressing our own creativity, and encouraging others to express theirs

9. Consequences of this paradigm:

  1. Selfishness transforms into selflessness – I want the best for me, and since you are me, I want the best for you.
  2. Greed becomes generosity – I want everyone else to have as much as they can, because everyone else is me.
  3. Jealousy and envy becomes pride and happiness for one another – others achievements are achievements of other expressions of myself
  4. The concept of hate disappears – we cannot hate what is you
  5. Self confidence increases, as we feel other’s trying to bring us up, not put us down
  6. We truly put into action Jesus teaching to “do unto others as you’d have them do to yourself” (check wording + add equivilant teaching from other religions)

10. Self-reflection and self-transcendence

  1. Breaking down defensiveness, building up confidence to critically evaluate one’s self and acknowledge our wrongs or harms we have done to others – allow us to repent and allow them to forgive
  2. Rid yourself of your own grievances and any desire for vengeance for injuries inflicted by others – through empathy with the Other, we learn to forgive and move on

11. Create your own happiness

  1. Make the decision to be happy – it is the biggest decision you will ever make in your life.
  2. Begin with gratefulness, for what you have, even if it is little
  3. Study the past, analyse different perspectives, take lessons from it and use it to expand your creative potential
  4. Don’t cultivate feelings of regrets, everything has happened for a reason, figure out what that reason is, and how the past can help you in your quest for creative potential.
  5. Bad decisions do not exist, that is judgement you make yet instead you can realise that this results may have led you to challenging times, from which you can now learn. These consequences were a small sacrifice, part of the process of discovering your creative potential.
  6. Do not cultivate feelings of guilt. Guilt is of no benefit for you nor for those around you. Forgive yourself and let it go. Learn from the past, but keep your mind in the present, and an eye on the future

12. Cultivating wisdom

  1. Facts are never static, but are the closest statement of the truth, at a particular point in time. If the data changes, facts also change. We must remain open to new data, ready to evaluate it in order to constantly progress towards a more truthful truth.
  2. Taoists belief “what is impossible today may become possible tomorrow, and what is good today may become evil tomorrow; what seems right from one point of view may from another view seem completely wrong.”

13. The pleasure of extremes, and joys of balance

  1. Life and death, hot and cold, love and hate, good and bad – you can’t have one without the other. This is the dualistic nature of life, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’d prefer a passionate love, even if it sometimes slips over to hate, than a mediocre love all the time. The extremes are much more fun. Ups and downs are what make life interesting. It’s the challenges that bring the most satisfaction.
  2. Happiness when pushed to the extreme becomes sickly and dull.  Beauty overdone becomes ugly. Even too much chocolate makes feel sick…

14. Rid your life of fear

  1. In the same way that millions of skin cells die every day, and yet our human body continues to live
  2. Our consciousness is already connected, and will continue to be connected even when the separateness of our present memory no longer functions, our consciousness will continue to live on through others – that are ourselves

15. Cultivate faith

  1. Faith is about cultivating a state in your heart and mind whereby you give yourself to God* – not about conforming to a set of “beliefs”
  2. Don’t worry, don’t struggle, allow the will of God/ the Universe to be done
  3. Is not about belief in hocus pocus or confession to any kind of autocratic dogma – faith is about a state of heart and mind
  4. Even things that seem to have no reason whatsoever, in time, you will see how it expanded your, or another’s, creative potential

16. Get in-touch with your creative side

  1. We ALL have one, you just have to give it a go
  2. Try everything, don’t be afraid of anything
  3. Know that time and effort are what give results; if you are prepared to invest yourself in something, you can do whatever you want to do.

In order to maximise happiness in life:

17. Right investment

(a) Of your time

  1. Spend it with people who motivate and encourage
  2. In an occupation that allows you to learn and express your creativity
  3. Feelings of daily happiness are essential to stimulate your creative potential
  4. Expanding other’s creative potential, and the creative potential of other forms of life, including the planet
  5. In ways that will provide maximum benefit to the most people
  6. Spend some time in silence, connecting to your conscious and giving it room to create; meditation, walking, driving, prayer

(b) Of your money

  1. Money is in fact, a cumulation of time and effort, that you have expended, and can henceforth use in exchange for others’ time and effort
  2. In your purchases, buying what is good for yourself and good for others
  3. In your financial investments, in businesses that are helping life move toward it’s creative potential

18. Not no conflict but no violence

  1. No circumstance ever substantiates violence
  2. The ideology of Creativism must never be fought for – this is against the nature of creative potential. Fighting for an ideology destroys creativity, which may be trying to morph into new forms, in which case, this is it’s achievement of creative potential.
  3. Fighting against nature is fighting against the will of God, that is, fighting against the deepest drive of each of us,
  4. Creativism seeks organic expansion through love, it is never forced or forged, but is the result of a synergy between selfish and selfless – working together for the good of all-life itself, all which is God.

19. The power of the mind

  1. The universe operates through spontaneous creativity, and through patterned phenomena – your role may be to contribute to either
  2. Thoughts are powerful in ways we don’t yet understand. We do know they are measurable on wavelengths, like radio waves, but have not tapped in to harness them yet. Experiments have shown the incredible impact of positive thoughts on plants, water molecules, and even the nature of atoms.
  3. Harness this power. Dream, make goals, pray, meditate, make them reality.

20. The power for world peace lies with you

  1. Each of us have, together, the power to change the world
  2. All it takes is a vision: what do we want the world to look like?
  3. And then in each of us the will to reconnect with our life’s purpose and play out our roles in this transformation.
  4. It begins with finding the peace within ourselves.
  5. Anything is possible!

A brief note about the word “Creativism”:

I’m not sure how this term first came into my head but when I googled it I discovered it was a term being used by a few people to describe a similar concept of what I wanted to use it to describe. There is even a definition in the Urban Dictionary: Creativism = ‘The theory or practice of creation as a way to live and understand life’ and a Creativist = ‘someone who is attuned creatively to their surroundings; a person who understands and expresses their life through creative works or motifs.’

Anyway if you have got through this essay then I have to say I’m extremely impressed. Six pages of babbling… anyway I would really really really love to know what you think. So please make a comment or send me an email.

Thank you!!!

Juliet xxx