On My Way

We all want somebody to love
Somebody to hold
Somebody to lie beside
Because the nights are cold

But will the degradation
To our baser instincts
Consume our souls
Confuse the common urge
For something we’ve never observed

Don’t let me go
Till I take my final breath
Then I swear I’ll set you free
Don’t leave me here without you
Though you can stay without me

I don’t want just
Another heartbeat beside me.
Familiar hope only your scent gives me
Just give me this life
Then I swear I’ll be on my way.

We all want somebody to love
Somebody to hold
Somebody to lie beside
Because our lives can be cold.

-AJ Sandhu 2015


Rumination 15

     No one tells you how bright the darkest corners of your mind can be. How sweetly that voice whispers lies and doubts into your ear.
     If they were dark, you would never venture into them again. They're enticing, bright and warm, because they're drawing all of the light and warmth out of you.
     The colder and darker you feel, the more light and warmth you try to generate, until you just can't anymore.
     You need more for the same high.
     The universe may be infinite; you are not.
     But you are strong, you are loved, and you are not alone. So many of us are right there with you, making more light as it is taken. Maybe one day we'll make more than the imbalance can pull.

Stay good and keep transmitting.
-AJ Sandhu 2015

Human Plight

I don't know where happiness lies
In this human plight
I just know there must be
Something better in this life

Have I earned the right to know
Earned the right to say
Or is this just another dream
Is this just another play

I'm sitting on the edge of today
But I haven't earned the right to stay
I'm not part of this
I never was

I'm just here to show
At least someone cared
That someone was holding on
To all of the moments shared

Do I take a humble leave
Or do I keep holding on
Hoping that I break through
To what potential we had when this began

My patience is waning
Though this is nothing new
How long can I keep waiting
Before I give up on you?

I will never know where happiness
Lies in this human life
I just know there must be
Something better for which we flight.

AJ Sandhu 2015


Rumination 14

Keep saying things over and over until they come true, or you delude yourself into believing them. Keep telling yourself that running in place is fine. That as long as you’re working and “moving” your fatigue and lethargy can’t catch up to you. As long as you don’t think about what what’s wrong it can’t hurt you.
Why think about the things you can’t change anyway?
After all, the things you can’t change are many.
Maybe starting over for me was easier because everything else was shrouded in the obscurity of nothingness. Or…is that another lie I tell myself to keep going?
It’s not easy to leave behind written words and created words. To never speak of them again. To remind myself they never were.
Starting over is hard. Starting over can break you. Make you wake in the morning with cold sweats over deadlines and ultimatums that never mattered. Where are those consequences now that it’s done? Is nothingness my just reward?
Jumping off the pedestal is harder. All of the praise and genuflection is impossible relinquish. What if it’s never found again? What if this is the end? What if I become another insignificant cog in the machine of the world.
You we’re always insignificant. A cog in the machine does its work and the wheels turn.
Only when the cog is gone and the machine breaks down does it learn its value. Does this insignificant cog’s value become apparent.
There is nothing wrong with insignificance.
Maybe if I say it enough…I’ll believe it.

Stay good and keep transmitting.

-A. Sandhu 2015

NaNoWriMo Project Poem: "Ballad of the Second Queen"

Won’t you wait a moment?
Or will I have to face
The dawn alone?

I’m holding on to thorns
Of what could be
While you clutch at velvet petals
Of a past fading to dust.

You’re singing in melodies
-With someone else.
While I perform verses
-Lost behind your choruses

So blinded by your pain
Your hurt
And your guilt
You won’t let anyone else in.

I keep offering a false paradise
Paradise I cannot give
There is a lonely song being sung
By someone I barely know

Yet every night
I listen for it here.
What is this hope since I heard it?
Will there be any when it’s gone?

Sing a song of fleeting romances
Hoping you’ll know you’re not alone.
Sometimes love is only for the moment
Blessed are those whose moments collide.

I’ll sing louder still
Hoping our moments catch each other on the fall
Or you’ll be here alone
Singing the lonely song I’ve wrought upon the world.

I’ll keep listening
For a paradise mine to take
A lonely song being sung
By someone I want to know.

Knowing that a moment
Is better than nothing at all.

-AJ Sandhu 2015

Another Better Me

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." -Soren Kierkegaard

     All of the work I do today is for her; the better me waiting at the end of this labor. A far off waif on the horizon that can be an ideal I see myself as to justify my procrastination, my lethargy. “What will be, will be,” Because it is so much more comfortable to think “destiny” has a route set for me. As if what I do or don’t do today doesn’t really affect that far off better version of me.
     Sometimes, like in these moments of rumination, I am hyper aware my ideal cannot be without the work I can’t seem to put in. Other, clearer times I’m able to grasp that she will be me as I am now, because I have stagnated.
     No longer bound by fear, but by inaction.
     I’m going through the motions of a changing life, but not actually doing much to change it. I’m screaming loudly to avoid toiling in silence. And I am writing admissions because I need to get these words somewhere that I am accountable for them.
     Even as I stand here and scream, “All I want cannot be!” there is that part of me that sees her; the other better me. The one waiting on the horizon to read carefully the harried words of the younger stranger she once was; trying to glean how she came to be where she is.
     I need to do more and I need to do it now.
     I need to do it alone.
     Scream into the void until it starts to scream back.

Stay good and keep transmitting.

-AJ Sandhu

Tragedy of the Commons

You stand and suffer in silence
You hold and suffer alone
Don’t let anyone in
Don’t let anyone see
Or they’ll find out you’re not
As strong as you seem.

And wouldn’t that be
The greatest tragedy of them all?
To know you’re just
As fallible as you feel.

Now stand and suffer dear
The cold dark humanity
Of a world bound by fear.

Our truest display
Most honest reality
Reverence for the ancestors
That carved their way
Into our genetic reams.

Refusing to see
All we despair
All we fear
Is the same everywhere.

Because we must be alone in the play
No one else would believe
Every tale’s been told before
Just players on a stage
Waiting for eternal leave.

Can’t you see
We’re the same?
You and I?
Regaled by
The beautiful lie
Only ourselves to blame.

-AJ Sandhu 2015

Lens of Doubt

“There is no cure for suspicion.”

     With anyone else I would bury the hurt and the guilt, but it’s you. It’s you and I don’t know what I did to cast a lens over every move I make. No matter how innocuous.
     I am fully aware of how bared and open this is, and I know this too will pass as all things do. But at what cost? How many times can I pretend not to notice the little voice that questions all which was once accepted with glee? There is no cure for doubt when the other party refuses to take the antidote.
     My penchant for staining the past rose-red is only hindering my forward momentum. Because of your lens, I see every grievance inflicted upon me; every broken promise. In fact, I’m not sure anymore that there were ever any kept promises now.
     A lens of doubt influences both the ones that cast it, and those on whom it is cast. If you fear me, eventually, I’ll start to fear you through no fault of my own.
     Lenses cast in lonely thought, without an outside voice to question their sanity, lenses cast by too many voices speaking too many doubts, cast by madness, cast by hatred, carve in all directions.
     What force to drive love into hatred.
     Faith, absolute faith, into doubt.
     What is the cost? How do I turn doubt back into faith?
     As I write these words I know I am saying too many of the things I keep inside; writing too many of the words I never say. But I will yell into the void as long as I am able, because one day, perhaps sooner rather than later, I will lose the chance.
     Because I can’t scream at you, lest you doubt further still. But I cannot live to do only as you say. Life is far too long and far too short to waste making you proud; I see that you never have been and you never will be. It’s like chasing the horizon on this round planet, it never comes.
     Now that they’re gone, I miss them, my rose colored lenses. But this lens of doubt, it might just save my life.

Stay good and keep transmitting

-Aman Sandhu

Divide

Here where silences grow
Of their own accord.
I’ll find my way back again
So let me wander
Where words scream aloud
Always knowing my silences
Are safe, until I need them most

Life changing with a moment
Words passing as simple contact
Fickle the mind
Quick to disregard.

I’ll carry you across, she says
Carry you through
Hold on as long as you need
So long as words can pass unseen
Chase me
Follow me
Find me
I am your divide.

Dare hold for a moment more
Dare linger for a second
Conscious contact
Break our social contract
I’ll run so long as you’ll chase me
Hide, only so you can find me
Waiting here to carry you across
Carry you through
Back to silences you’d left behind.

-AJ Sandhu 2015

Siren

Wrecks behind the curtain
Can play the crowd
Make ‘em hang
On their every word

Out there in the glittering lights
Hide dreams you might never see

Pensive and broken
On the edge.
Always scared
They’ll see the lies inside.

You’re not the one
Just a siren,
Worried your silences
Will cause further investigation.

You make your noises
To drown out the voices
In your mind.

Hoping somewhere you can find
The silences you crave.

Bound by your dreams
How can what you love
Be splitting you at the seams?

Go on and play the crowd
Make 'em hang
On your every word

Don't give them the chance
To find who you are
In your silences.


-AJ Sandhu 2015

Pretense

No one will find behind these eyes
All of the things I hide
If I pretend long enough
No one will ever find what’s mine.

I’ve worn the mask before
I know what it’s for
I’m not afraid
To sink into the masquerade.

Just shuffle through the faces
Find the one that fits
The one you need right now.

If you feign the strength long enough
Maybe you’ll make your own along the way
Maybe the love I fear
Is the one I should’ve killed long ago?

As long as there is fire burning deep inside
I’ll be able to find my way
As long as the face I wear is the one
The one I see in the mirror
I can never stray too far
From where I need to be.

So I can play in the masquerade
I can stay behind these veiled eyes
As long as no one knows what’s mine.

If I pretend to be what you know
Maybe even the face will change
Be better than who I am now.

There is no surrender
When wearing the mask
Just protecting your heart
Just letting it rest.

No shame in hiding
Behind strength you don’t own
No shame in wearing
The face you’ve made

Come join me

Let’s play in the masquerade.

-AJ Sandhu 2015

Reactionaries

The world collapses slowly, but it crumbles all at once. Like the tsunami that rages in from the sea. It started as a ripple from an earthquake fathoms below. A shift so massive the land must feel the sea’s fury, but not yet; not until it carries with it time and false hope that it will pass without incident.
     It is kind, the waters recede before they attack you.
     Life is not.
     Life is under no construct of physics to be rational. Not bound by alterable rules about the way things should be. 
     I talk about the day given to us by the world. Every morning a new day to do with as we would. But the day is not ours alone. It belongs to everyone. So, the relevant carve out time that is remembered in the over 7 billion days happening all at once.
     You, do what you will in yours?
     And I, in mine?
     Unfortunately, our time occupies the same space. Perhaps what you do in yours forces me to react in mine. Now extend that, billion-fold.
     It’s lovely rhetoric, to say the day is ours to do with as we please. To imply that we are anything other than reactionary, and reactionary alone.
     Everything we do is a reaction. We react to tiredness with sleep and the sun in the morning elicits wakefulness.
     I’ve been holding words best left in the past too closely to my heart; that the world is ours to do with as we please. The world, is ours to react to as we please.
     So caught up in my grief, I failed to see that any idea can and should be challenged. Progress cannot end in death. If we temporary creatures hold the thoughts of other temporary creatures as eternal truths only because questioning them becomes sacrilege on their memories, then we’re giving up on them. To hold only the profundities and claim them truths is to deny the mind that had them the immortality of evolution.
     There is no shame in questioning the wisdom of the dead.
     There is no sacrilege in finding them lacking.
     There is no courage in holding them upon pedestals and inventing fictions in your mind of what would have been. Nor any comfort, other than the temporary.
     We are reactionaries.
     And that is why the world crumbles.
But we don't have to be.

-Stay good and keep transmitting.

Weight of Guilt

I'm dreaming of a life
A life that might not exist
But maybe if I dream it enough
I can come close...I can come close..

Is ambition alone enough?
How many countless words discarded
Before settling close enough?

Always a whim away
We tell ourselves
Like a memory gate to yesterday
Regaled by the lies around me.

The illusion that time passes around us
That we'll be fine when the morning comes
A false heartache of the mind
Justified sickness we can ignore.

What is this weight
I can't seem to shake?
Should it have been me
For the ignorance to take?

I'm drowning in days,
Days that never seem to pass.
Treading on in hope
For the moment I look back.

Maybe I can do this?
Seems like I can live this?
With just a memory on my mind.

-AJ Sandhu 2015

Peddler of Dreams

She’s peddling, peddling dreams
By the seashore
She’s showing you, showing you things
You’d always suspected
But never known for sure
Saying the words you’d only heard in your mind.

She’s a wanderer,
Simple dreamer,
A soul led on a whim

She’ll be gone before the day breaks
Leaving only your dreams in her wake.
But she’s infected you to the core,
From just a look your way,
You don’t remember anything from before.

Because she’s peddling, peddling dreams
By the seashore
She’s showing you, showing you things
You’d always suspected
But never known for sure.
Saying the words you’d only heard in your mind.

She’s a wanderer
Simple dreamer
A soul led on a whim

She’ll never tell you what it takes
To keep her
But she’s a whim away
When you need her.

-AJ Sandhu

Paradise

You asked for another voice in the silence
Cause it was deafening in your mind
But in the sounds you heard
No words could be found.

Far up above me
Slower than my mortal coil;
Though faster than I'd ever understand,
Are galaxies colliding
With lives I'll never know

It doesn't mean I don't want to
Just a consequence of this life
Born to die only when
We start to understand

If I could hold you though the darkness
We'd shine a light so bright
I'd have to deal with 
The shadows that we'd cast.

How can I hold something I've never had?
What is this unspoken understanding
Between two worlds hell-bent on colliding?

What the sun wouldn't give
For a moment in the darkness
Only caving when her life is ending

I'm done with shallow words
Of what we should be
Lead me like inescapable darkness
Leads the light.

I'm here for the morning
Ever burning for moon's light
Reflecting but never returning

I'm on the verge of surrender
Giving up on paradise
I never knew I had.

Is this the tragedy of our lives?
To fade away only when
We learn how to live?

I'll hold on
To this precipice of hope
That maybe one day
A paradise will be mine
To hold again.

Disconnect

There is refuge in unwritten words still draped in the golden glow of magical possibility. A story in the mind is perfection, untainted by the imperfect words needed to craft reality.
How many wonderful worlds become contaminated by the disconnect between mind and hand? I can regale you with a dozen or more imaginings perfect and pure, until tested by the litmus of reality.
I’ve written before of ideas that ravage through like aches; stories that so thoroughly disconnected me from reality, I awoke weeping over the banal mundanities of a world without magic.
I create so I can escape from what I cannot control.
Finding release in my mind from what I cannot yet be free of in reality.
So consumed by the worlds over which I reign, I forget to paint them with the brush of truth. Falling to traps of perfect heroes without consequence. Heroes always in the right place at the right time with the right words. Never a moment, or even days, too late. Never human.
Doing so would acknowledge the faults I see in reality.
Sometimes words aren’t enough. No apologies or validation strong enough to ease the hurt. Sometimes you can be and are too late. If I refuse to show such human error in what I write, how can I expect to change reality?
It complicates the narrative, but I’ve been running from complication all of my life. If my escapes don’t teach me to cope, nothing will.
My characters, like myself and the people I’ve chosen to surround myself with, cannot put out all of the fires; cannot contain all of the damage. But we can learn to repair that which is in our power.

So can the people in my mind, if I would just give them the chance. 


Stay good and keep transmitting.

UPDATE

Blogging Sundays will be back this Sunday and I will try to create a backlog of posts so I can have this up and regular again. Thank you all for your support, it means the world to me. 

Vice of a Million Faces

When do people blur into numbers? Where exactly is the tipping point that turns good intentions into could-have-beens?
There is a limit to how many individuals one human can imagine. Call it a flaw in our evolution. Never in our history have we needed to comprehend the value of numbers greater than those in our physical proximity.
It stands to reason, the smaller our personal circles, the less we understand. Simply “growing” these circles cannot prepare us for the sheer number of people there are. Cannot stop us from categorizing and labeling in ways that strip the individual from the digit.

There is no cure for that.

It compounds itself exponentially when those massive numbers, an unfathomable group, declares itself a collective, or is declared such. A collective is easier to imagine than a million faces. Easier to control.
And simultaneously, harder to live up to.
Especially when this group is yours. Parades the name you chose for yourself as it’s moniker of community. How does a person become an idea?
What was done to those millions of faces is done to you by them.
The leader, the only measure for a group, becomes a symbol.
Unfortunately, humans are fallible. Humans can’t be symbols.
If you want to change the world, you have to wander it. In silent acts of kindness and courage. In whispered rumors and gossip.

A thief in the night will do more for change than a good person in the sun’s light.

Stay good and keep transmitting.

Rumination 13

Constrained and managed lives are difficult to lead. Entire industries are built around the projection and public cultivation of image. The higher you go, the greater the spin. Eventually your individuality, your humanity is stripped away and only a caricature of a person remains. You find yourself defending the idea of what you should be.
You don’t know why you don’t want to give it up.

The faster the ascent; the more basic the idea.
It doesn’t have time to form. No chance to cultivate in heartbreaking anonymity. Its black and white; no range to be a vice you can live with. Anything that flies in the way, any small indiscretion is an attack on the image itself. It starts to suffocate.
So, how do you escape? How do you stop hiding in front of the world?

You don’t.

If you want out, you have to burn it to the ground. Even if it is everything you have ever built over the course of your consciousness. Your whole life.
Even if it burns you in the process.
Start a fire and raze the foundation.
Then on the blackened ground where your life used to shine, build it again. Slower this time. Of your own volition. Take the old lessons. The immature missteps, learn from them.
Move forward.
Sometimes the life you should save is your own.


-Stay good and keep transmitting. 

Catharsis

This should be Rumination 13, but hey, like much else in my life; we all know how that will go.

I will start by admitting I don't exercise this catharsis as much as I used to; unfortunately, there have come to be a greater number of eyes on these places than before. I would chalk it up to anxiety, however, even I remember those days before, when this space was more frequented than ever. 

So, let's dive in.

I'm in a rather strange place. A few interesting turns of events have somehow dropped me into the midst of people I never knew about and somehow now do. More personal attacks have put upon me choices I have dreaded for longer than I remember. The last eight months have dredged up memories I would rather leave in the past.

Until a few months ago, I would have called this the worst year of my life, no matter how adamantly I attempted to salvage it.

I can't now. Too much has happened. To call it the worst would mean there was nothing to be learned from the fires burning around me. To label it so would be giving the world too little credit. And blatantly denying the fact there are four whole years of my life lost to God knows what, because I just CAN'T REMEMBER.

I have met, in this three quarter done year, the strongest and hardest working people I will ever know. I have met people who've told me that a stranger has given them a bit of happiness. I've re-introduced myself to everyone that once knew me. Lost something and someone I'd held very dear, but didn't treat as if they were dear to me. Lost something I hated and, for some reason, feel it's void more strongly than anything else.

I opined about two pink totes and a suitcase. Begged for the chance to live without ties to anyone or thing. Labored over my life's work. Now I'm sitting at a keyboard struggling my way through a rumination that would have once taken maybe twenty minutes.

I'm still excited. I'm still crazy enough to believe I can do those wonderful and crazy things I've always imagined. I know I can't do them alone. But I know that if I keep screaming into the void long enough, someone out there will hear me. And one voice will become two, until the voices become so deafening that I won't need to scream anymore.

See, wanders like me, we're temporary. We show up to tell you the tide can be changed, but you do the changing; in the process you change us. We're not the leaders, those are born among you.

So, until next time, stay good and keep transmitting.

Cosmic Perspective

Everything we know about anything has been discovered on this giant rocky space bucket. It orbits a massive ball of fire; located on one of the outer arms of a galaxy filled with them. All held together by a point of density so great even light cannot escape.

But it isn't the only one.

We are one of many, lighting the infinite void of SpaceTime. And we know all of this because a speck of dust dared to defy gravity and look up.

Our first act was that of defiance.

This Game

I’ve got this little black dress
A dollar to my name
Some hope in my pocket
And I’m here to play this game

Won’t be bound by
Ghosts of our memories
Won’t be held back by
Things we used to be
(we used to be)

I’ve got this tattered black dress
A few pennies to my name.
A drop of hope in my pocket
When’d you change the rules to this game?

You can wake up
In a different bed every morning
You can tell me
It’s the play of the rich
(But shame for the poor)

Now I’ve got this torn black dress
Not a penny to my name
Spent the hope in my pocket
But at least I’ve won your game.

I’m done now
Cause I can see
People like me
Shouldn’t speak!
(I was never one of you)

I’ve got this new black dress
Don’t need the dollars that you gave
Gathering some hope in my pockets
So no one else will have to play this game.

-A.J. Sandhu 14-June-2015

Rumination 13 IS PENDING

Working on a writing blog right now. Taking much longer than anticipated. Keep an eye on this spot.

Rumination 12

WHY. Why do I have so much stuff? I used to be able to fit my life into 2 pink totes and a suitcase. Now I have a whole house worth of things without a whole house to put them in.

I have TWO cupcake makers. WHO IN THEIR RIGHT MIND NEEDS TWO CUPCAKE MAKERS? Like 10 different candy molds, a cake pop maker, (have I ever even used it? WHAT?) FIVE CUSTOM CAKE MOLDS. The one that is shaped like a book fits into a tote and it will be mine forever. I will be buried with it.

I have 3 sets of GOBLETS? THREE? Buffet patters (I HAVE LITERALLY NEVER THROWN A PARTY. EVER.) AN EIGHT PERSON CUTLERY SET. WHAT? (Edit: I just looked at the box, it’s from Macy’s; it was $80) When am I going to use these? A SPICE RACK?!?!

The note cards and journals. I love them, I really do, but they only add to the clutter around me. Journals, I intend on slowly giving away to people I find fascinating. I’m going to miss them, but I know I would much rather they find use and not storage. There are journals that are nearly 15 years old.

The note cards will always find use. I have so many people to thank, and there will only be so many more.

I just can’t find it in me to throw anything out. Even when it’s obvious I don’t need it. I’m holding on to things better left in the past. Sure, I might get my own place again one day. But today isn’t that day. I can sit here letting the toxicity of this place ruin me, or I can venture out and find that forever I’ve always dreamt of.

I won’t let depression keep me. I won’t let my mistakes define me. There are symbols in this hoard of the person I was expected to be. Someone I never was, no matter how hard I tried.

I can’t sit still. I need the quiet comfort of lonely wandering. It’s maddening to think I can’t just be a wander. I can’t just pack up and hop a plane to nowhere. I don’t want the things everyone around me wants. I don’t want to get married, I’ve been on this Earth a while now and I’ve yet to find someone I could even fantasize a family with. I don’t want a place to which I am bound.

It’s lonely I know. But I crave the silence of a long drive. I yearn for the books read on wordless flights. I ache for places I’ve never seen.

I’m not naive enough to think two lives can run parallel eternal, but for the times some will run next to mine, I will offer the one eternity I can give; a space in my heart.

I am selfish, there is no defending that. I will wear it proudly. I am selfish. I think of my own happiness before progeny. I am selfish, because I want that which is most difficult to give. I want a space in your memories. I don’t want any more to be a passing glance on a sidewalk or a subway. Sad eye contact until the next bus stop.


I want to arrive at my death with open arms. Welcome embrace from a friend foiled twice. There will never be enough time; I just want to do enough in my time.

Influence

I don’t talk enough about my influences, so I’m going to start at the top with the writer that changed my life.
Ursula K. LeGuin was the first science fiction writer I ever read, but it wasn’t her science fiction I read first. It was EarthSea, where a red skinned boy named Ged (Sparrowhawk) found his way to a school of magic. Where he learned the word and true names. Red skinned Ged who spoke to dragons and traveled the archipelago after the shadow he had cast upon it. Ged who looked like me. I was nine; it was before I found Harry and Hogwarts.






The Lathe of Heaven was pure raw science fiction that set my mind on fire. Every rereading of George Orr’s plight with his powerful dreams, the doctor who chose to right the world, and the power of our individuality; leaves me more enlightened than the last. It remains the one book I will consistently recommend.





The Left Hand of Darkness found its way into my hands when I was sixteen. In a suffocatingly narrow minded small town library. A story that defied gender and our obsession with it. Showed me a grand planet where we were the strangers. The human protagonist was the dark skinned stranger on a world where biological fathers could be biological mothers, and spent their days as an undefined third gender neither feminine nor male. The Lathe of Heaven is my favorite work, but The Left Hand of Darkness changed me. While I am happy to identify as female, it opened my eyes to people who didn’t conform to any of the roles cast upon them. It is fittingly upon every list that would have you read the great works of humanity.

The last four are from LeGuin’s Hainish Cycle, of which The Left Hand of Darkness is a part. Beginning with Rocannon’s World it paints the cosmos as humanity’s playground. Pure and simple science fiction written with an anthropologist’s eye; turning fictional futures into text book realities.
If you ever get the chance, read her work. I promise, you won’t be disappointed.




Rumination 11

Sometimes you have to remind yourself that one of the reasons you aren’t a part of something anymore isn’t because you didn’t like the thing itself, but because you didn’t like the people involved.
Not just because it clashed with your science or your personal research, but because people who are fanatical stop listening the moment you tell them you disagree. They are convinced you aren’t there to teach them, that you’re there to yell at them for being wrong.
I will admit I learned my extreme patience from these arguments, however, butting heads without any support is the most difficult experience of my life. And honestly, going through depression without ANY help from my “faith,” caused me to lose it. To be told over and over again that I just needed to SNAP out of it. Now, the faith itself isn’t to blame, and I need to be very clear about that.
My depression became a catalyst for the change I needed to make in my life. I was going to end up in this place anyway. Studying Astrophysics was already leading me in that direction. My faith was too small. It couldn’t stand up to the questions I had. It fell before me like all of the others when I had questioned them. For some people, faith is necessary. It is good, it keeps them good. To call it a crutch is a false equivalent and cruel. I don’t care if the fear of an afterlife is what causes you to be decent. As long as you are decent.
I was lucky enough to be raised in a religion that promoted equality of caste, gender, race, and denomination. One that was adamant “God” was the center and we were all on paths home. If anyone says otherwise they’ve made a habit of misreading the texts.
My mother explained the analogy best to me when I was 14. We were driving back home, and she decided to take the opportunity to teach us something; by taking a different road. It took a little bit longer, but we got to see another part of the landscape around our house. While driving she explained the roads were different, but if used properly, they all lead to the places we wanted to go.
That is what the faith I grew up in taught her, so she taught us. But people corrupt it and spin it into shadows of what it could be.
I don’t care to argue this. I’m not here to inform you about things I no longer practice, I just need to get the words out. Because I’m sitting alone a room, unable to do anything. This is the last I will speak of faith, or lack of, unless it is to answer a question that delves into why I am the way I am. I’m not here to tell you to believe or not believe. I write because I want you to think for yourself. Don’t let “traditionalists” get in the way of reading and learning things on your own. If you’re going to argue with people like that, you have to know more than they do.


One day you might find after you’ve learned as much as you think you can, that you don’t know anything at all. That the arguments are petty and small. That there is beauty in our insignificance. We tiny people, who may fade without a whisper, should spend the limited time we have learning and doing as much good in this world as we can. Because there will never be enough time.