Sunday, August 28, 2005

Enough is Enough!

To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts,
nor even to found a school, but so to love wisdom as to live
according to its dictates, a life of simplicity, independence,
magnanimity, and trust.
- Henry David Thoreau, Walden

Whoever loves money never has money enough;
whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income.
This too is meaningless.
- Ecclesiastes 5:10

It's not having what you want, it's wanting what you have.
- Sheryl Crow, Soak Up the Sun

This morning, I saw two ads just before leaving for another weekend at work that brought back a question I have been asking myself a lot lately. Namely, what is enough? One ad showed an gentleman with what appeared to be a nice house and nice car exclaiming 'Help, I am up to my eyeballs in debt?' What would save him, of course was the nice home equity people. The other was basically an ad for a VW Jetta and owners happy because of their purchase no matter what misfortunes befall them. It would seem, from my perspective, that there are many people who fall into the category of needing so much beyond what they need that they get themselves into trouble and there are those who surround themselves with much more than enough in order to be happy. In all honesty, I keep falling into the latter category and wonder a lot lately about how much I may need to give up to truly enjoy life and still have "enough", or if that is even possible/necessary

Granted there are also plenty who are not in the position of having enough as well. It would seem that these individuals lose out a lot more than they should as a result 'enough never being enough' for many others but I suppose that is just one opinion.

Of course there is the thought that enough is to live as simple as possible. Thoreau suggests that the more a person attaches him/herself that which is more than necessity (i.e. a shack is all that may be truly needed, but a mansion becomes much more than needed), the more the person becomes shackled to them as a slave, imprisoned and unable to escape.

So which is it? Or is it something entirely different? What really is enough?

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Enter at your own risk!

There are many who chose a profession that requires them to risk their lives for others. Still others risk their reputations and lives for what they believe in. I would not doubt that all of us have seen the signs at the local pool or beach ‘Enter at your own risk’. Even stock investments carry disclaimers about risk. It would appear that risk permeates all our lives.

So what really is risk?

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Secret of My Success...

It seems there is something that drives many people to strive for goals whatever the goals may be. Often someone who is said to be successful is admired by many if not all those around the individual. However, what does this mean? In other words, what is success?

I Question, Therefore I Am!

An odd twist on Decartes perhaps, but I am beginning to appreciate the twist again! Growing up I would sometimes manage to find the right answer to the questions posed by the teacher. Given that I thought math was hard but fascinating, I would be very excited to get a right answer in this realm and be beaming with pride only to hear the teacher exclaim "You did it wrong!" I would slink back to my seat ashamed and sometimes, not yet being the manly stud I am now, start crying. I could not really understand how I got a right answer wrong. I still can't.

I am not sure if my somewhat shy demeanor with respect to many of my ideas was a result but I cannot help but wonder if it has led me to hide away my inquisitive nature. I seemed to have long since really taken the time to be curious about much of anything anymore save the questions 'Why don't I have that?' or 'Why am I the one single?' As such, I feel as if I am leaping into something mindless in an effort to keep up and have everything. For whatever reason, it is seeming obvious to me that no matter what I gain, it will never be enough and I am seemingly getting more unhappy with life despite more and more accumulation.

It seems time to gain something else I seem to have lost so long ago because I 'did it wrong!' It is time to be curious again and as such discover what the longings of my heart and soul truly are.
With this I start 'In Vino Veritas', A Socrate's Cafe of sorts in a blog. I ran across a few books by Christopher Phillips on the idea of 'philosophy for the masses' gathering and thought it would be intriguing to apply it to a blog. A question will be posed in the blog topic. Please comment on the question posed with the following things in mind: Really read what others have to say and respect where the thoughts may be coming from (i.e. disagreement is expected but put-downs and browbeating are trash canned.), try and support your answers with specific examples from your experience, and understand that consensus on ideas is not the point here.... rather an understanding of the possibilities becomes important. It should be noted that from Phillips' experience many of these real world discussions he has facilitated have led to yet more questions.

I will admit that I feel a bit odd about this new blog but look forward to it with cautious and curious excitement with respect to what it may bring.

Question on!