Author Archives: softypapa

About softypapa

I love to walk and think.

Desert base camp

I’m considering the establishment of a “base camp” at the site of a deserted mining camp which I discovered just inside the southern edge of the Deep Water wilderness. I think this location would make a good place to slowly build up a permanent camp to use as a launching point for exploration into the deep wilderness beyond. The only down side is the fact that the camp is located on the lee side ‘beach” of a small and rugged island, which itself is smack in the middle of an enormous flash flood basin. If I were ever there when the flood came then I’d be trapped, and in for quite an experience. Still, the fact that the miner’s camp is still intact after more than 100 years may indicate that the location is relatively safe. 

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The words are gone

My dead muse is utterly gone. Though I know she’s there, near at hand below this thin veneer of civilization; can’t however, see past such an excellent screen. Even these words emerge only with strained and concerted effort. There’s no hint of poetry or inspiration. 

The Good Life – 170329 HOS v.17.0

The Good Life Meditation for March 29th, 2017

This is our last day at 326 Santa Louisa in Irvine. We’re moving to a new home near the Spectrum shopping center here in Irvine. This will be an interesting new home for us, as the new place is more urban than anywhere we’ve lived before. My entire family is quite excited about this move.

The remainder of this post is my Good Life meditation for this day.

Click here to read more about the objectives and principals listed below

Affirmation of Human & Civil Rights

Individuals have certain rights, namely the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, which I must recognize, respect and abide.

Five Objectives

  1. The Development & Maintenance of Good, Sound Principals
  2. The Cultivation of Good Emotional Reactions
  3. The Performance of Good Actions (per the above referenced principals)
  4. A Recognition of My Scope of Control
  5. A Recognition of My Real Opportunities

Twenty Principals

  1. Principal of War
    I rise each morning ready to go to war with everything I believe is true.
  2. Principal of Reason (Honesty & Objectivity)
    Reason is my tool for uncovering truth.
  3. Homunculus
    The little man who lives in my head and steers my life and makes decisions based on the guidance of my conscience.
  4. The Home of Good & Evil
    Good and evil are opinions which rest with the Homunculus and which do not exist outside my head.
  5. Purpose (Biology & Virtue)
    We are each responsible to develop and maintain our own purpose. We have a default purpose within us which is our desire and need to reproduce. Other than this it is up to us to decide our own purpose. My purpose beyond reproduction is to live a virtuous life.
  6. Atomic Principal
    Everything in the universe is made up of small pieces which are used and reused over and over in the formation of everything. We too are made of these piece and we will soon enough dissolve away to disperse and be reused.
  7. Principal of Nature
    Everything in the universe has some nature, including us. It’s useful to identify the nature of things, including our own nature, such that we can strive to live in better accord with the world and ourselves.
  8. Principal of Maturity (Wisdom & Fortitude)
    Maturity is that state of having wisdom and the fortitude to abide and follow our better thinking.
  9. Social Principal (Diplomacy & Justice)
    We are social animals, needing one another to survive and live well. We can further our social ends by way of good interpersonal communications (Diplomacy) and through the recognition and pursuit of Justice.
  10. Feast of Offal
    During the course of our living we give off some waste and excess from our poor choices and inability to manage our thoughts and actions. This waste appears as anger, frustration, wrath, aggression, etc, and is readily consumed by others. Consuming this waste is the Feast of Offal. I strive to avoid ingesting this waste produced by myself and others and to reduce my own production of Offal.
  11. Temperance (Suffering, Simplicity & Apathy)
    Temperance is the controlled consumption of anything, including thoughts, activities and emotions. Suffering is the experience of exercising this restraint, while Simplicity is a way of making Temperance part of our life, and Apathy our attitude towards things which are outside our control
  12. Agency & The Great Indifference
    All living things are agents, while their absence is The Great Indifference
  13. The Best Seat in the House
    Right here, right now. To not want to be anyone else, to be anywhere else, or to be doing anything else.
  14. The Path of Wildness
    A way out of being stuck. To perceive the need to make a choice; to then assess our situation and deliberate our best action; and at last to decide with our best informed position, possibly guided by our gut feeling, ready to make a mistake, though knowing there is some virtue in informed action.
  15. The Risk of Avoiding Risk
    That risk which appears when we try to avoid the more immediate and apparent risk.
  16. Sin & Damnation (Falsity, Credulity, Faith, Superstition & Dogma)
    Engaging in any of these sins causes immediate damnation in the here-and-now.
  17. Complete Oblivion (no final Reunion, Reconciliation or Justice)
    Pursue these things now, as there is no good reason to think we can take care of them after life is done.
  18. The Great Life Adventure
    Make that adventure early in life, as the foundation and great story of your living. So much is made of so little, so soon.
  19. The Season of Philosophy
    When it comes, record the words before they are lost forever.
  20. Arena & Utility
    What opportunity now? What utility this moment? What chance this to exercise my principals and pursue by objectives?

Today’s Thought & Action Plans

I will endeavor today to maintain deliberate control over my thoughts and emotions. To move forward in a virtuous manner. To recognize the true scope and limit of my control. And to exercise virtue in every opportune moment.

Learn more about my personal philosophy The Good Life

Visit my main YouTube channel

Find me elsewhere

Send me a message


The Good Life – 170328 HOS v.17.0

The Good Life Meditation for March 27th, 2017

My mind is haunted this week with a little work-related anxiety. Mainly, I’ve been thinking over what I would do should I lose my job. That’s a bit of a curious thing to worry over given my job is fairly secure. However, as a family man, and the primary bread-winner, it’s a real concern. I’ve taken some action to address these concerns. Namely, I’ve done the following:

  • NEW RESUMES
    Update my resume in readiness for a job search. I’ve actually got two resumes ready to go. The first is my full resume which I will use to search for a project manager or analyst position. The second resume is a more simplified one which I can use to look for part-time work as a second job or as a last resort if the full time effort doesn’t yield a position quickly enough.
  • DRIVING SCHOOL LICENSE
    Now that I have my license as a driving instructor I should be able to more easily secure a fairly good-paying job teaching driving. This is another nice option should it become necessary to go this route.
  • FALL BACK PLAN
    If I were to lose my job and things got really bad, I mean REALLY bad, then I can always fall back to our life in Japan. I can send my wife back first to set up house in our old community of Shizuoka. I know we can get an apartment with Leo Palace (rental place) as this is how we got started in Japan last time. While my wife and daughter go back to Japan to jump start our new lives there (kinda the reverse of what we did coming to the USA) I will stay in the USA to continue my job search and liquidate our lives. In the end, I’ll go back to Japan as well where I will find a job teaching English, my wife will work, and our daughter will finish high school. My wife and I will then find a nice little house to rent or buy and we will settle in for the long-haul. Eventually, I’ll get both USA social security and Japan social security which will keep us going in our old age. One nice benefit of this is the outstanding health care system in Japan which will take care of us in our old age. Since our daughter is already a native Japanese she will fit in fine. If I can make it another two years at my current job then I will qualify for a pension which will really help. Actually, this is a pretty good plan. Writing this out was a big help.

Click here to read more about the objectives and principals listed below

Affirmation of Human and Civil Rights

Individuals have rights which must not be neglected while pursuing the good of the many.

Five Objectives

  1. The Development and Maintenance of Good Life Principals
  2. The Cultivation of Good Emotional Reactions
  3. The Performance of Good Actions
  4. Recognition of My Scope of Control
  5. Recognition of Opportunity

Twenty Principals

  1. War
  2. Reason (Honesty & Objectivity)
  3. Homunculus
  4. The Home of Good and Evil
  5. Purpose (Biology & Virtue)
  6. Atomic Principal
  7. Principal of Nature
  8. Maturity (Wisdom & Fortitude)
  9. Social Principal
  10. The Feast of Offal
  11. Temperance (Suffering, Simplicity & Apathy)
  12. Agency & The Great Indifference
  13. The Best Seat in the House
  14. The Path of Wildness
  15. The Risk of Avoiding Risk
  16. Sin & Damnation (Falsity, Credulity, Faith, Superstition & Dogma)
  17. Complete Oblivion (no final Reunion, Reconciliation or Justice)
  18. The Great Life Adventure
  19. The Season of Philosophy
  20. Arena & Utility

Today’s Thought and Action Plan

Deliberate thinking and mastery over my emotions.. Observation of the thoughts which appear and rise within my head. Honest and objective reflection over the true scope of my control. Good assessment of the impact of my decisions and the consequences they may entail. Effective use of my time despite how I may feel. Utilization of every opportunity, pain, chance, moment of good or bad, for the improvement of the world through my own disciplined self-control towards the aims for virtue.

Learn more about my personal philosophy The Good Life

Visit my main YouTube channel

Find me elsewhere

Send me a message


The Good Life – 170327 HOS v.17.0

The Good Life Meditation for March 27th, 2017

This post is a daily activity which I perform in order to recount and consider my life objectives and principals. I do this every day, usually in the early morning between breakfast and going to work. I often do this aloud, though sometimes I simply write it out.

The Problem

My purpose in doing this activity is to first of all help myself to become a better person, living life in greater alignment with my life objectives and principals. In addition, I hope that by posting this on-line I might be able to assist others who might be looking for help living a better quality life. The problem which I seek to address is the question of life purpose and the pursuit of meaningful living. I believe I have an answer to both of these questions, as well as a system of living which can help us to live a more deliberate life in the direction of virtuous ends.

Click here to read more about the objectives and principals listed below

Affirmation of Human & Civil Rights

Let me begin  my stating that human beings have basic rights by virtue of societal agreement, and that these rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are inalienable and must be recognized and respected at all times. The basic goal here is to ensure that we do not make decisions which sacrifice the individual or lesser groups of society for the sake of the many.

Five Objectives

  1. The Development & Maintenance of Good, Sound Life Principals
  2. The Cultivation of Good Emotional Reactions
  3. The Performance of Good Actions
  4. An Honest Recognition of My Scope of Control
  5. Moment by Moment Assessment of Opportunity

Twenty Principals

  1. Principal of War
  2. Principal of Reason (Honesty and Objectivity)
  3. Homunculus
  4. The Home of Good & Evil
  5. Life Purpose (Biology & Virtue)
  6. Atomic Principal
  7. Principal of Nature
  8. Maturity (Wisdom & Fortitude)
  9. Social Principal (Diplomacy & Justice)
  10. The Feast of Offal
  11. Temperance (Suffering, Simplicity & Apathy)
  12. Agency & The Great Indifference
  13. The Best Seat in the House
  14. The Path of Wildness
  15. The Risk of Avoiding Risk
  16. Sin & Damnation (Falsity, Credulity, Faith, Superstition & Dogma)
  17. Complete Oblivion (No final Reunion, Reconciliation or Justice)
  18. The Great Life Adventure
  19. The  Season of Philosophy
  20. Arena & Utility

Diary, Thought & Action Plan

It’s a Monday, which means another hard day of work. I try to tell my daughter to prepare her young life and plan her future in order to find work which she’ll enjoy, and look forward to, though I don’t think she’s listening very much. But that’s alright, as this seems to be the way so many of us discover our opportunities to improve, by reconciling our living to the mistakes of our youth. Funny that I think that just now…as I was considering this same subject last night as I considered my own life course. Though I had some faintly understood dreams when I was young, these by no means were distinct enough for me to have made true in the way I barely discerned them at the time. And it’s a funny thing to note that they have in fact come true in the actual course of life I wound up living, though I am only now coming to realize this fact.

Today I will maintain close scrutiny over my thoughts and emotions. I will mind them in the same way I watched over my daughter when she was little and playing at the park. Always attentive with one eye on the kid. So too now my emotions, and the thoughts which rise up from my mind  like colored carp within a deep pool. Like the carp, I wan my thoughts to simply touch the surface gently from time to time, never splashing or making a fuss with too much outward disturbance of the peace. Likewise my emotions, rising from whatever mysterious depths they call home, I will spot them in their approach, examine them in detail to know their cause and character, before willing them back to the depths with hardly a ripple of disturbance to my equanimity. I will have become informed and knowledgeable of the encounter, and strengthened through my discipline and self control.

The timid man I was on the beach yesterday. Is he the man I am become. Is this old age? Or is it simply the result of my recent retreat from outside, the consequence of warm, domestic retreat. How easy it would be to shrivel and die of such living.

Learn more about my personal philosophy The Good Life

Visit my main YouTube channel

Find me elsewhere

Send me a message


Walking meditation

I walk a lot. Lately, I’ve begun using this activity as an opportunity to exercise improved control over both my body and mind.

With the body, I’m taking more deliberate steps, and maintaining improved control – oversight might be a better word – over their placement and motion. When walking the dog, I allow him more leadership – especially on my days off when I’ve nowhere in particular to go – which provides a sort of training and practice for me of giving over control to the virtuous end of allowing my dog some healthy liberty. I also get to exercise some healthy apathy in managing my response to things which are either outside my control, or for which I’ve given up control.

As for my mind, I’m aligning my thoughts to keep better watch over my breath; that steady in through the mouth and out through the nose which does wonders to balance thinking in alignment with the body. Once I hit my rhythm my walk becomes almost a float, in the same way the rest of my living is buoyed and maintained through purposeful, deliberate choice and action. It’s a better way of walking, and a good model to improved living.

The Good Life – 170324 HOS v.17.0

The Good Life Meditation for March 24th, 2017

I think I’m going to change the format of this activity a little. I’m alright with the fact that I don’t have enough time in the morning usually to add any detail to the sections listing my objectives and principals, as these are linked to elsewhere (and here) in the post. However, I would like to use this time to add more details about my day’s plan, as this seems a very good use of my time. So, I’ll add the objectives and principals below, and then come back and add the section on my thought and action plan immediately below this intro bit. Let’s give this a try.

Today’s Thought and Action Plan

My thought plan for today is to do my best to maintain oversight of my thinking. To maintain focus on worthwhile subjects which help myself and others make forward progress in life, while avoiding focusing of subjects such as gossip, self-pity of unproductive self-deprecation, excess leisure or work, or other thinking activities which do little more than fill the time and keep me from making better use of my life.

My action plan for today is to keep better watch on my breathing, which is the foundation of my more deliberate living. When I’m done writing here I will make a healthy breakfast, before preparing to take my motorcycle to Lior’s Motoride for service. While the bike is being worked on I will go to Denny’s with the computer where I can do a little personal work. When these activities are done I’ll head back to Irvine and perhaps go for a swim at the beach.

In summary, my thought and action plan today are about oversight, management and directed control of my thinking and consequent action.

Click here to read more about the objectives and principals listed below

Objectives

I have five objectives which I strive for through the course of the day.

  1. I want to build and maintain sound principals which I can use in life
  2. I want to be in control of my emotional reactions
  3. I want to do things which are good and in accord with my principals
  4. I want to recognize the true limits of my control and live with this in mind
  5. I want to recognize the opportunity to virtue in every circumstance

Principals

My twenty principals are the guides in my life which help me steer a more virtuous course through each day. By remembering and abiding these I am better able to manage my life and make good day-to-day decisions. I can also respond better, keeping better control of my emotions and thus engage better with the individuals with whom I work and live.

  1. War
  2. Reason (Honesty & Objectivity)
  3. Homunculus
  4. Home of Good and Evil
  5. Principals (Necessity & Virtue)
  6. Atomic
  7. Nature
  8. Maturity (Wisdom & Fortitude)
  9. Social (Diplomacy & Justice)
  10. Feast of Offal
  11. Temperance (Suffering, Simplicity, Apathy)
  12. Agency & The Great Indifference
  13. The Best Seat in the House
  14. The Path of Wildness
  15. The Risk of Avoiding Risk
  16. Sin & Damnation (Falsity, Credulity, Faith, Superstition & Dogma)
  17. Complete Oblivion (no final Reunion, Reconciliation or Justice)
  18. The Great Life Adventure
  19. The Season of Philosophy
  20. Arena & Utility

Learn more about my personal philosophy The Good Life

Visit my main YouTube channel

Find me elsewhere

Send me a message