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Thoughts

A Generation Of Guilt

by Jon Pinney on July 17, 2010

Has anyone else noticed how guilt-ridden our world is these days?

Guilt seems to be one of the top driving forces.  I want you to do something, so I guilt you into doing it.  You feel guilty, so you do it, even though you’d rather not.

What a pathetic and pitiful way to live–for both the guilter and the guilty.

The worst part is that so many of us don’t realize it’s happening, but know something is not right when it does.

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When Did Joy Disappear From My Life?

by Jon Pinney on February 4, 2010

I’m not sure… I know it happened sometime in the last four months. I know this because I just realized it was gone, and I can remember a time a few months back when it was here.

The strange thing is that I don’t remember how it left. But I know that it did.

This may take some of you by surprise. If you know me at all, you know that I am generally very upbeat and happy. I love life. I love being alive. I love sharing who I am with the people around me. I love making them see the beauty that is life and the strength that is within them.

You see, I have always believed in the divine nature of man. I know that we have the potential to be so much more than we are. And I know that getting there is within our power. It’s within us.

I have always told people this. I have always tried to instill in others knowledge of the strength they have inside, the power that is their vision of themselves, and the ability they have within themselves to positively affect their lives and the world around them.

Somehow lately, I stopped actively believing this for myself. I forgot that my happiness and joy was a choice I make. I forgot that I have a reason to be happy—many reasons.

A few months ago I came face to face with a realization that shocked and hurt me. And it wasn’t so much that I had never thought of it before. The shocking part was that I didn’t realize the depth of the matter or understand how deeply it would affect me.

If I had to pick a moment when the joy began to leave my life, I would say it was that moment. From then on, this realization began its strangle hold on my life. As I allowed it to strangle me, I did my best to hide it. Unfortunately, I couldn’t hide it—not from everyone. Some very close friends had to deal with the affects too.

Instead of learning the lesson and moving on, I let the wound fester. I focused on it. I tried to make it go away by constantly dwelling on it. I started to blame my circumstances and those around me for my unhappiness. I also started to expect that the people around me would give me the happiness I couldn’t find myself.

Along this journey, I negatively affected one of the best friendships I have ever had. I became a drag. I lost the life in me, and I expected this friend to follow me through my despair and pull me out.

I realize now how wrong I was. And how unfair. I wish I could go back and undo these last months to keep the wounds I caused from being inflicted. Unfortunately, all I can do now is learn and grow.

I am very sorry to any of you that have had to carry me these last few months. I am so indebted to you for your patience and love, and I am so sorry for any pain, frustration, or annoyance I have caused you.

To my friends who put up with me despite my recent depression, I am very sorry. I am working now to revive the life and joy that you used to associate with me.

I may be down, but I am far from done. If there’s one thing I have always believed, it’s that I can do anything I put my mind to. And so can you.

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How I Felt This Week

by Jon Pinney on December 12, 2009

How I Felt This Week

How I Felt This Week

Wow these last few months have been rather excruciating for me… and I mean that in the most positive way imaginable.

Does your life ever sometimes just feel like too much to handle?  Mine does.  And recently it’s been overwhelming me a lot.  Luckily this week I think I hit rock bottom and have begun to claw my way out.  Thursday night I got a blessing and yesterday I had a few realizations, as well as some needed conversations, status checks, and heart to hearts.  Sorry to anyone my blueness has affected.

I felt devoid of life… like I was slipping away into blackness.  So, to commemorate the occasion, I got creative.  This is what I came up with:  a visual representation of how I’ve been feeling lately, especially this last week.  I hope you enjoy, and I hope you don’t feel this way.  If you do, listen to some good music and make a decision to knock it off, turn around, and start clawing your way out.

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What Is Truth, True Religion, And True Science?

by Jon Pinney on December 2, 2009

What is truth?

In my opinion, truth is the way things are.  There is only one truth.  Everyone may disagree on what it is, but that doesn’t mean there are multiple versions of it.  The earth, for example, was created somehow.  It was created once and in only one way.  We may never know the truth of how it was created, and we may all disagree on it, but there is a truth.  And there is only one truth.

In my mind, the search for truth should not be consumed with tearing down other beliefs.  Truth should stand on its own and persuade people of its veracity by the pure fact that it is there.  And dwelling on why something is wrong is not searching for truth either.  If it is not truth, then why dwell there.  Look somewhere else for the truth.

On a related topic…

I have always said that true religion and true science are the same thing.

In fact, the purpose of both religion and science are the same: to find truth.  They approach their search for truth in different ways, but each still focuses on finding truth.

And because there is only one truth, if they could both uncover the truth, they would both support the same truth and therefore each other.  That’s why I say true religion and true science are the same thing.  For more on this topic, you can read my post titled “Truth In Fiction – Volume 1”.

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The Concept of My New Album

by Jon Pinney on October 20, 2009

Jon 017 cr4I decided that my new album will represent the pinnacle of my artistic expression to this point in my life.

Since starting to write lyrics and music for the album, I have realized a few things. I decided that for it to really be as good as I want it to be I have to have a clearly defined concept. I need to know what I’m saying and craft my expression carefully.

I’ve realized recently that art is all about making decisions.  I used to think that decisions limited my artistic expression.  I have since realized that making choices provides clarity and freedom.  Once you know what is beneath the surface of the stone, it is so much easier to release it.

My original concept was light and dark.  I love the idea of the contrast between the two.  I still may try to include a little of this in my album (maybe as the theme of one of the songs) but this will not be the overarching concept.

Instead, I have decided to write about life.

There is a book that I recently read.  The point of the book was how beautiful life (and human life specifically) can be.  There was a phrase that I think I got from the book.  It is ‘choosing life in all its glory.’

That is what I want to write about.  Life.  I think life is beautiful.  I am so glad I am alive, and I want to share the joy and the pain of life.  Without one we would never understand the other.

This album will be a portrait of life the only way I have seen it–through my own eyes.

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My Blog And What I Blog

by Jon Pinney on October 6, 2009

Blogging is fun but also very time consuming.

Lately I’ve decided that if I’m going to continue blogging I need to change it up a little.  I’m going to focus on music.  I’ll still write about my life and other stuff that’s going on, but it will be less frequent.

I’ve announced a new album, and I’ve begun writing a lot of new music.  I think I’m going to blog about the songs I’m writing and show you bits and pieces of them as I bring them along.  I will also put up videos and even have downloads at times.

Music is one of my favorite forms of expression, and I feel like I’ve got a lot to express.  Hopefully this change will be one you enjoy.

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Truth In Fiction – Volume 1

by Jon Pinney on September 29, 2009

As I have read novels throughout my life, I have realized that many of my favorite authors have a keen understanding of reality and truth.  Their stories are woven around the truth as they believe it to be.  In many instances I share their beliefs.

The book I am currently reading has bits of what I consider to be truth littered throughout it’s pages.  It is the sixth book of Terry Goodkind’s “The Sword of Truth” series, entitled Faith of the Fallen.  Following are some of my favorite quotes from the book.

Page 21:

“The only sovereign I can allow to rule me is reason.  The first law of reason is this: what exists, exists; what is, is.  From this irreducible, bedrock principle, all knowledge is built.  This is the foundation from which life is embraced.

“Reason is a choice.  Wishes and whims are not facts, nor are they a means to discovering them.  Reason is our only way of grasping reality–it’s our basic tool of survival.  We are free to evade the effort of thinking, to reject reason, but we are not free to avoid the penalty of the abyss we refuse to see.”

It has always been my belief that truth exists.  Things are the way they are.  There is only one correct answer.

Whether we accept or find the truth is something else entirely.  Just because I do not believe something is true does not mean it is false.  Truth is truth.  It is independent of desire, faith, understanding, acceptance, or pretense.  It is my goal to seek truth where I can find it.

That is why I have always said that true religion and true science are the same.  Religion and science are two different methods of uncovering truth.  In the end, science will prove the truth of true religion.

Page 460 (expands on the first quote):

“The most important rule there is…the only sovereign you can allow to rule you is reason.

“…It is not only the most important rule, but the simplest.  Nonetheless, it is the one most often ignored and violated, and by far the most despised.  It must be wielded in spite of the ceaseless, howling protests of the wicked.

“Misery, iniquity, and utter destruction lurk in the shadows outside its full light, where half-truths snare the faithful disciples, the deeply feeling believers, the selfless followers.

“Faith and feelings are the warm marrow of evil.  Unlike reason, faith and feelings provide no boundary to limit any delusion, any whim.  They are a virulent poison, giving the numbing illusion of moral sanction to every depravity ever hatched.

“Faith and feelings are the darkness to reason’s light.

“Reason is the very substance of truth itself.  The glory that is life is wholly embraced through reason, through this rule.  In rejecting it, in rejecting reason, one embraces death.”

The only thing I would add to this description is the importance of recognizing that our own reasoning abilities are not perfect.  That is why I believe a merging of our own reason, mixed with our faith and feelings, with inspiration from God, is the only way to find with any certainty truth in this life.

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How Can You Tell If He’s Into You?

by Jon Pinney on September 25, 2009

Is He Into You?

Is He Into You?

Good question.  It’s a question that gets asked by both sides about the opposite sex.

It seems to me that in our society we have a hard time making up our minds.  We’re always looking for the next best thing, the next exciting thing, the next attractive thing.  This also carries over to our romantic relationships.  Oftentimes we are too caught up thinking about the next person we’ll meet or see that we fail to fully engage with the ones we see right now.  (I am guilty of this also).

I know a girl that can’t tell if a guy is into her.  She told me the signs, what he’s doing, why she thinks he might be interested…  He flirts with her, he finds random excuses to talk to her, she often catches him looking at her.

She also mentioned the other signs why he may not be into her…  He never asks her out; she’s invited him a few times to hangout and he always has an excuse.

She’s having a hard time deciding if he’s into her or not.  Should she hope for a relationship with him or just forget about him and move on?  It can be a frustrating situation to be in.

Is He Into You?

Is He Into You?

In my opinion, if a guy is interested, he will pursue.  That means he’ll ask her out or find ways to spend time with her.  He’ll get her phone number and communicate with her through text or phone calls.  If you work with him, he will find reasons to hang out with you outside of work.  These are all ways that guys show they are interested.  If he doesn’t do these things, it means (in almost every situation) that he is not interested.

If he was interested, he would make it obvious.

But what about the flirting, the looks, the random questions or excuses to talk, etc.?

They are good signs, no doubt, but are not enough.  Many guys (and girls) like to flirt.  They can be attracted physically, emotionally, or intellectually.  Because of these attractions, they may give you attention.  But if they are not trying to move the relationship to a deeper level than just flirting, they are probably not interested in doing so.  If they were, they would do it.

Now I know there are exceptions out there.  We learn about them in the movie “He’s Just Not That Into You.”  But that’s what they are: exceptions.

Is He Into You?

Is He Into You?

If you are really frustrated and need to know for sure one way or the other, I suggest confronting the guy and asking him.  Say something like this:  “Hey I’ve noticed you’re sending me a lot of mixed signals; I can’t tell if you’re interested in pursuing a relationship or just flirting for fun.  Which is it?”

Then the guy can let you know.  This could potentially make the situation awkward, but won’t if you don’t let it.  If he’s interested in pursuing a relationship, then great; good thing you asked.  If he’s not, well, at least you know, and now you can move on.

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People And Flowers

by Jon Pinney on September 16, 2009

People are like flowers.  There are no two that are exactly the same, yet each is as beautiful, brilliant, and complex as the next.

The human experience is like the life cycle of a flower.  Its birth and death do not diminish its beauty.  And even in death, its delicate beauty can still be seen.

Blue Lily

Blue Lily

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Why Picky Is Perfect

by Jon Pinney on September 12, 2009

I had two conversations tonight that touched on being picky.  Why is it that “picky” has such a negative connotation?

I found this picture of me being picky.

I found this picture of me being picky.

Picky is a word that many people have used to describe me (including myself).  And it is most often used when talking about members of the opposite sex.

I am told I shouldn’t be so picky; that I need to lower my standards; that I’ll never find someone because my expectations are unreal.

To all those people who think picky is a four letter word, I’d like to give you my opinion of why picky is not only okay, it’s the perfect way to be.

Here I am being picky again.

Here I am being picky again.

What does picky mean? According to Merriam-Webster, picky is “fussy, or choosy.”  Choosy means “fastidiously selective” or “particular,”  and one of the multiple definitions of fussy is “requiring or giving close attention to details.”  When looking for a mate, both of these are qualities worth having.

I expect my future companion to stimulate me on many levels.  The first of these is physical attraction.  I must be attracted physically, and it needs to be a strong attraction.  If this attraction is not there, the likelihood I’ll try looking for the other levels of attraction is not very good.

The second is intellectual attraction.  If she is boring, you can’t expect me to pursue her.

Wow I am so picky

Wow I am so picky

The third is emotional attraction.  If she doesn’t have any emotions (or has too many), you can’t expect me to be interested.

The fourth (and possibly the most important) is spiritual attraction.  Not only must she have similar beliefs as me, they must also be important to her as mine are to me.  If we don’t match in this area, a future is likely impossible.

I normally sum all of these up by saying I have two requirements: (1) that she be attractive (2) that I want to spend time with her.  It is not my fault that I can’t find girls that match these criteria.  But I hope you can understand why I feel a future companion should.

I'm even picky when I'm on my phone

I'm even picky when I'm on my phone

In my mind, being picky is recognizing the options that are out there, evaluating them against what you are looking for, and dismissing the options that do not fit your criteria.  If this is picky, then I wholeheartedly and with enthusiasm embrace my pickiness.

I don’t think it would be fair to be with someone I didn’t adore–or to feel like I’ve settled.  It wouldn’t be fair to me, and it would definitely not be fair to her.

This post may sound harsh to some.  It is not my intent to be harsh, only to tell the truth as I see it–the truth as I feel it.

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