Out of the vast nothing.

From the vast nothingness of existence springs some sort of fountain of regret and indignation. Why me, what brought this awful deed upon me? The fountain spews forth its foul liquid and persists to submerge your soul with an inundation of fear, hate, and scorn. Why me, indeed? That nothingness is out of your control, or at least that’s what you think, until you realize that that fountain that’s spewing at you can be manipulated and instead of being drowned to death in foul water, you can wade forever in sweet wines of the fruits of a thousand grape vines.

Tripe. That’s what I call that last paragraph, a bunch of words strung together eloquently to try to paint a picture, to make a point, to get an idea across in some sort of imagery that will captivate an audience. In normal people talk – sometimes you’re flush, sometimes you’re bust, only you can stack the cards in your favor. I suppose that’s almost a little too diluted to fully grasp what the topic is trying to get across. Is this really about stinky water that squirts out of some concrete fountain? Are we really playing a game of poker with our lives and making bets on what each day will bring?

In a word, no. And this is simply why:

We chose if the fountain is going to contain foul liquid or sweet wine. Don’t believe me? Here’s a little example of taking yourself down to a more simplistic – card playing level. Below there will be two pictures. One – of course – simple. The second, the same picture, but manipulated with a keen eye to accentuate the positives and capitalize on the beauty that is present, not the filth that surrounds.

A simple red car surrounded by a background of chaos. It's hard to focus in on what sort of car it is, or even pick out what the graffiti is even trying to tell us. It's easy to be so overwhelmed by the cacophony of  loud colors to enjoy the art. The intricate colors bleed into a kaleidoscope of nothing. You accept the fact it's a car surrounded by poorly done graffiti.

A simple red car surrounded by a background of chaos. It’s hard to focus in on what sort of car it is, or even pick out what the graffiti is even trying to tell us. It’s easy to be so overwhelmed by the cacophony of loud colors to enjoy the art. The intricate colors bleed into a kaleidoscope of nothing. You accept the fact it’s a car surrounded by poorly done graffiti.

And that’s what you want to see. A car, a poorly drawn penis, random initials. All very random things.

What if you were to evaluate this situation and start with nothing. Picture nothing there – and see only what you want to see.  What then? Are you able to focus on a single piece of the puzzle?

When you look for what you need, not what you'll be effected (good or bad by) you'll find life a little more simple.

When you look for what you need, not what you’ll be effected (good or bad by) you’ll find life a little more simple.

In a word, “No.” That’s what it comes down to. Being able to say no to those situations that we find ourselves in that aren’t to our benefit. “No.” Whomever took the time to spray that simple word on the side of this wall really had a deep sort of philosophy about them. A nihilistic approach to criminal activity. “No”. It can apply to anything:

No Diving

No Smoking

No Left Turns

No War

You can see the entire world through a black and white set of glasses if you set your mind to it, and you’ll find the same “no” mentality will also allow you to alter the liquid in your fountain. Saying no to simple things, such as that extra piece of pizza, spending the money that you don’t actually have, or an obligation you’re not prepared for will help you alter the liquid that spills from your fountain. “No.” Once you start picking out what you don’t want, like an extra piece of pizza, you’ll be able to focus more of your mental energy on what you actually do want – which may be weight loss, a better complexion, or just a gross display of willpower.

“The poison from which the weaker nature perishes strengthens the strong man – and he does not call it poison.” -Friedrich Nietzsche

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