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  1. DvnMrtn
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    DvnMrtn Contributing Member

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    Passion & Life

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by DvnMrtn, Mar 1, 2010.

    Okay, I am going to have a rant here. I would LOVE to hear what people have to say about the topic. I think most writers are very passionate people, so this rant doesn't apply to most of you. But that's preciously why I value your input here! I think this topic is a goldmine for themes for future writing.

    Rant: Here's what gets me. People who don't have a passion in life. Why? How? I don't understand how you can be happy with life simply existing from moment to moment. I recall asking a few people, some of them close friends of mine: "What do you want to do with life? What are you looking to get out of it?" I would get answers like, "I donno." or "I want to get rich.". Okay...Sure. Maybe a question like that without the necessary build-up will produce answers like that.

    But look around. How many people have passions. I'm talking about strong ones. The Olympics--which just ended today--are a great example of people with passions. These people are dedicated to the extreme with their passions. I wouldn't expect most people to have that kind of time or motivation to devote that much time to their passion. But for the most part, I don't see many people with a strong passion for anything in particular. They seem content to coast, day to day.

    My passions include anything literature related. I love reading, writing, and exploring the endless possibilities and truths that is the human condition. I want to experience life. It's short! I want to appreciate everything from the minuscule to the grandeur. The 'good' AND the 'bad'. Life is an adventure and I want to explore and marvel at its awesomeness. I'm a romantic at heart. I reek of it too. Anyone who gets to know me will be able to see this.

    Even without writing I could take pleasure in life just through appreciating and experiencing it. It's taking the time to. So maybe that's what other people do? I doubt it. I really do. I hope this might just be a culturally based thing. Perhaps we are so caught up with 21st century urban life--the go-go-go lifestyle-- that people are being brought up and raised into, that they are just too busy to find a passion. Is our culture responsible for this? After living you're whole life with this type of lifestyle it is understandable that people don't have any passion. Is this the reason people don't 'stop to smell the roses' anymore? How many people will stop and marvel at a gorgeous sunset now-a-days? To quote my friend "That's gay." I think it's really sad.

    Maybe we should blame the education system (and this is coming from an educator). We're training a generation to just coast-on-through. School is NOT hard. Unless you have a learning disability, I would guess that most students can coast through school. School has long been looked at as 'training for life' and maybe enabling them to coast through school is setting them up for coasting through life. School is not challenging to most students. It doesn't push them to their limits, let them discover who they really are. It disappoints me. I wonder how the economy will be affected with a workforce of people just expecting to coast.

    That's pretty much it for this rant, but I think this is a topic that needs to be explored. As for writing there are so many themes in here that need to be picked apart and explored.
     
  2. InkDream
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    InkDream Senior Member

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    I think I write because I'm lost rather than because I am passionate about, well, anything. I haven't found anything that I'd say I am "passionate" about but I'm looking.
     
  3. ChimmyBear
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    ChimmyBear Contributing Member Contributor

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    Awesome...this is my kind of topic. :)

    Passion is an absolute must!! It doesn't matter what you do in life, if you lived without passion you missed out on really living. Passion for me comes in simplistic ways. I look at the ocean and I'm filled with passion and longing. I desire to feel the water on my feet while the wind blows through my hair and on my face. It's the same with the sunset and a greatly written song or book. All of this, brings out my creative urges, I find that I want to put all of that emotion into whatever I am doing, be it writing or taking pictures. I just want to pass it on to others.

    There are so many things I want to accomplish and achieve before my time on this Earth is over. I want to complete a Novel, sing a love song on my wedding day, tell my future grandchildren about life, travel to Europe, learn to play the Cello, master the piano and guitar, learn several foreign languages, teach hearing impaired students, and finish my Memoirs. It's kinda funny, I had a friend tell me once, "Robin, you can't do everything." My only reply was that I could die knowing I tried.

    I suppose having such passion is why I am a writer, singer, collector, traveler, dreamer, hopeless romantic, and lover of anything artsy. I can look at a 50 year old handkerchief and fall in love...seriously, it has happened. :rolleyes:
     
  4. DvnMrtn
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    DvnMrtn Contributing Member

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    THATS what I'm talking about. You are experiencing life and loving every minute of it. As for art and creativity what you said is exactly how I would define the two:

    Art, in it's many forms, is the appreciation of all the little things; the seizing and cherishing of your existence, leaving you inspired for more.(One of the little favorite things I've written)

    From what you wrote I think you feel the same way.
     
  5. DvnMrtn
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    DvnMrtn Contributing Member

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    And what's up with our consumerism culture? It's like we're bred to believe that to route to happiness is through owning stuff. But like Chuck Palahniuk says in Fight Club - The stuff we own ends up owning us.
     
  6. pinelopikappa
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    pinelopikappa Senior Member

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    I think you ask why people trap their lives in a miserable existence. Some people have a passion making money, it's a true purpose in their life. I'm not one of them, but I realise it's a true thing for them. Do you know that this sort of people consider people like us, (who are interested in writing or art, or take time to admire a sunset) weird? That we lose our life insted of making something of ourselves? I'm just saying that your argument has two sides to it. I find lately that the value of education, knowledge and art is not self evident. We actually have to defend it, prove it somehow. Unfortunately. But I think that has been true forever.

    Having said that, there also people who truly hate their life. Sometimes resposibilities are to blame. If you have to provide for your family all this sounds like a luxury. Although we can always find time for something small to make us feel human again. The best situation is to combine your passion with earning a living. But even if that's not possible, the most important thing I believe is people: the people that surround us should support us about it. Unfortunately that's not always the case. Don't take it for granted that when someone hears that you are passionate about the fine art of litterarure, they'll be supportive, recognizing that they live an empty consuming existence. Oh, no! They'll just do whatever they can to make you feel bad, to bring you down.

    My advice, earned by personal experience: surround yourself with positive people who love you and support you in your dreams, and don't bother changing the rest. It's not worth the effort, plus you'll fail anyway."Don't throw pearls to swine", isn't that how the saying goes? I'm just saying, the people you describe will never get your idea of passion.

    And that was my rant. :)
     
  7. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    It certainly makes me sad when I see a class full of kids who are not interested in learning. It's kind of bizarre to me. They are giving up 4 years of their lives to do something i.e. study for a degree, which they hate, and they are only doing it because they have to (family pressure, or the problem that in this country it's hard to get a good job without a degree).

    I think the reason that they are coasting is because they are tuning out and just waiting until the bad times are past. I think and hope they will discover interests later.

    I'm not so sure that having a 'passion' is necessarily a recipe for happiness in life, though. I'd say that aiming for contentment and having lots of good friends is far more important in the long run. After all, you can't take it with you, nor do you want to sit when you're old saying, 'well, I don't have any family now, or genuine friends, but I've got a great row of medals that I won 40 years ago...'
     
  8. pinelopikappa
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    pinelopikappa Senior Member

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    In this country it's hard to get a job with a degree. Beat that! :(
     
  9. pinelopikappa
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    pinelopikappa Senior Member

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    You know, where I come from the idea of passion is in fact a negative thing. The reason is that it clouds your jugment, throws you off balance and finally destroys you. Balance being the ultimate vitrue one must have in life. I know you had something else in mind when you wrote your post, but perhaps you want to know this information.
     
  10. LtFrankie
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    LtFrankie Member

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    People will prefer a quick fix like videogames and beer over sitting down, watching the sunset. But yeah, being 'artsy' isn't often seen as practical unless you're really talented, and can therefore make a comfy living out of it.
     
  11. Tigress
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    Tigress Member

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    This is a very interesting topic, thanks for bringing it up!

    I am one of those people who finds joy in little things like seeing a familiar sign when visiting your hometown for the first time in years, or noticing how the sunlight dances through the limbs of a barren tree on a crisp, clear winter morning. On the flip side, I'm also the one who cried the first dozen times I watched Rudolph get stranded on the ice, or the one who lays in bed at night worrying about her little brother who is going through a divorce.

    I've been told I wear my heart on my sleeve -- that I'm too emotional. For years, growing up, I believed "them". Imagine a child of four sitting down to Thanksgiving Dinner, thinking not of the food or nor of her cousins who are visiting, but instead focusing on the mantra running through her head over and over again: "I will be prim and proper, just like Spock."

    It wasn't until I was in my 20's that I came to realize that the passionate way I viewed life was *not* something to be ashamed of, or strive to change. I'm one of the lucky ones.

    I believe many "passionless" people are simply those who had their passions thwarted early in life, and thanks to the years of negative imprinting and have simply not rediscovered them, yet. The sad part is, many never will -- and that breaks my heart.
     
  12. lessa
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    lessa Contributing Member

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    many people do not lose their passion they simply learn to hide it.
    for instance. My passion has always been children. Even as a child myself I was always mothering the younger ones or the ones who were being bullied.
    I was told this was cute in such a condescending way that I started to hide my feelings.
    When I was a teen I started babysitting and got lots of jobs because I would actually play with the little ones. So I could show a bit of my passion just not too much.
    When I got married my passion was for my family. Husband and 2 boys. I could reveal my passion and indulge in it full time. But it still wasn't proper to admit that it was a 24/7 thing.
    Now my passion is still my family and children (grandchildren now) but I have added politics.
    Passions change but some still have such a stigma attached that most people do not admit to the passions that they have.
    I am a weird breed in that I admit to everyone Children are special and deserve more attention and care than they are given. Politics can be discussed by anyone and should not be vilified for their beliefs.
    If someone is passionate about something they should acknowledge it not hide it because society frowns on it.
    But if someone doesn't appear to have a passion of anything they may just be not showing it because of past reactions.
     
  13. TheHedgehog
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    TheHedgehog Contributing Member Contributor

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    I have many passions that I live my life with, the passion of music, both listening and playing it, cooking, writing, drawing, enjoying nature, reading, surfing, my city, friends, family, et cetera. The sad part is, in agreement with lessa, is that some people have become jaded or have experienced a string of unfortunate incidents and have chosen to hide their passions, which, in my opinion, is one of the unhealthiest things you can do. It took me years to accept myself, simply because I didn't fit in with some of society's standards, but luckily I had a group of friends who still accepted me when I chose to completely be myself around them.

    I doubt that my future salary will dictate my life extensively, but it will be an important part for me in deciding whatever vocation I'll take up. I think people sometimes let a certain aspect of their lives consume them -- ambition, greed, or something equally dangerous. But if those people who do have trouble expressing themselves through their passions, then maybe they'll find a friend or go through an experience that gives them the rights to their own passions.
     
  14. Gallowglass
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    Gallowglass Contributing Member Contributor

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    'I shop, therefore I am.'

    The typical rant of the conservative British middle class, but a true reflection of modern consumerism in society, nonetheless.
     
  15. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    only people who don't have to worry about where their next bit of food, or drop of water will come from can afford the luxury of having a 'passion' in life... unfortunately, they're way in the minority in this world we humans have created, where:

    1.2 billion live in extreme poverty, on less than $1/day
    over half of the world's nearly 7 billion population lives on less than $2.50/day
    80% of our fellow humans live on less than $10/day
    the richest 20% on the planet account for 3/4 of its wealth

    imo, it would be nice if all of those who're fortunate enough to be able to afford having a 'passion' would include a passion to help those who aren't, in any way they can, while indulging in their other, personally-benefitting one/s... if they only would, everyone who now struggles [often in vain] to live another day, could enjoy having a 'passion in life' too!

    and those are the thoughts on the matter of one who's as passionate about writing, as i am about being 'useful'...

    love and hugs to all, maia
     
  16. Delphinus
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    Delphinus Senior Member

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    I wish people would stop using the word 'talent'. I despise everything it stands for, and feel a minor pang of annoyance when people tell me I'm talented at x, y, or z. It belittles the artist and displays astonishing elitism.

    Essentially, I just want a good quality of life. Sadly, my expensive taste dictates that I need a huge income for this, so I suppose that, yes, being rich is one of my goals. Really, though, I just want to enjoy myself as much as possible - it just happens that most of the things I enjoy are ridiculously expensive or involve talking to people who it's hard to get in contact with unless you're part of a certain social circle. I want, essentially, to fuel a hedonistic lifestyle, and to donate anything I don't need to charity.

    As you may have guessed by now, I'm a lethal social climber. But conservatism, I feel, is something that needs to be combated. I'd die for liberty, and not the false, superficial liberty that the media spews at us in the form of expensive, meaningless goods that we own for the sake of owning or the sake of prestige. Apparently "I spent fifty times more than I need to on a shirt!" is a good thing nowadays. Diamond-encrusted suits and the like are absurd. A meaningless arrangement of toys of ever-increasing price with which we waste our spare time doing nothing productive; an egotistic and revolting excess that's no more useful, life-improving, or mind-expanding than lighting said money on fire. But I'm not one for naturalism, not at all. I simply believe that we have the means for utopia, the means for every man, woman, and child on this earth to be reasonably well-fed, clothed, and housed. What have we done instead? Squandered and wasted our opportunities in favour of giving money to rich people to spend on jewellry and clothing they only wear once.

    Let them eat cake.
     
  17. ChimmyBear
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    ChimmyBear Contributing Member Contributor

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    You speak a truth, Maia, we should be passionate towards helping others in this world around us. But I want to make it clear, I wasn't afforded my passion because I was or am privileged, in fact, quite the opposite is true. I grew up very poor and without but I have always had passion for life, I couldn't afford not to have it...even in the darkest times of my life. My birth father moved me and my family into several condemned houses, we had no lights, no food, and no way to go anywhere. I am a survivor of child molestation and rape at the hands of a close family member, without going into too much detail, I was tortured with bags over my face, tied down, and gagged. I lived with an abusive step father who made me take my meals to my room, I wasn't allowed to eat with my mother. He was an abusive drunk and finally walked out on her.

    The thing is this, in spite of all my difficulties I never lost my passion, my passions made me seek out a better life for myself. Passion is a very personal thing and it can be born out of remarkable circumstances. From as far back as I can remember, I have always had a burning desire to make life as good as it could be...for myself and those around me. I believe this is why I find it in the most simplistic places, a sunset and a Rain tree were all I had as a little girl, those were my haven. My great grandmother's field of Crepe Myrtle trees and the Doves calling out in the morning light brought about a desire to live and feel the sun on my face, I would dance in the rain. I was writing songs at nine years old. The point is, no matter how difficult my life or how disadvantaged I was...I had passion and a desire for life, I needed no one to provide that for me. Passion is free, we only need find a little inspiration. :)
     
  18. pinelopikappa
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    pinelopikappa Senior Member

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    Reading all the messages in this topic, I see each of us has a different idea of what passion is. Not that there is anything wrong with that :). I'm just saying...
     
  19. benny
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    benny New Member

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    This is a great thread.

    I see too many people living without any sort of passion and it makes me feel bad for them as well as really appreciate the experiences I've had. I have a really hard time relating to people my own age, generally, and have a low tolerance for people that speak just to hear themselves. There are people who allow themselves to get bored, people wasting their time in relationships just because they cling to familiarity and convenience, people that complain about their small town when no small town is small enough to send them packing, and so on. There's no time for any of that. The older I get the more I realize how short life is and how little time there is for B.S. I've been doing a lot of traveling on my own lately and have run into a lot of people that seem to carry their petty baggage around no matter how far they are from home. I live for those unguarded conversations with people I'll never see again, but it's interesting to hear where some people come from, mentally, and what they value. A lot of people are so willing to accept the mundane, and it's given me so much respect for people that manage to carve out an existence doing exactly what they want, regardless of money or anything else. So many people surround themselves in possessions, mindless entertainment, and other people to serve as a distraction. A distraction from being alone, because they never really got to know themselves. I don't mean to sound miserable, but is it fair to say that a lot of writers spend an alarming amount of time alone, regardless of how happy or unhappy they actually are? Alone seems to have that negative connotation associated with it, which is really too bad. Sometimes I feel most alone when I'm with a group of people. I don't think it's such a bad thing, because it's taught me to do what I want and always be on my own time. If you wait for others, you'll die of old age, unlearned and untraveled. I write because I need a mental release that is something other than those fictional conversations that run through my head when I'm in the shower or on the bus, that I'll never really have, with people I'll never meet. There are things that people don't like about themselves, myself included, but one think I do know is that I do everything passionately, and I wish others would too - my own friends included.
     

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