Tag: The Good Life

Favorite Good Life Quotes

People say that what we are all seeking is a meaning for life. I don’t think this is what we’re really seeking. I think what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive.
–Joseph Campbell

In the midst of winter, I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer.
–Albert Camus

Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action.
–Benjamin Disraeli

I am an experiment on the part of nature, a gamble within the unknown, perhaps for a new purpose, perhaps for nothing, and my only task is to allow this game on the part of the primeval depths to take its course, to feel its will within me and make it wholly mine.
–Herman Hesse

Whatever your life’s work is, do it well. A man should do his job so well that the living, the dead, and the unborn could do it no better.
–Martin Luther King, Jr.

A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a molder of consensus.
–Martin Luther King, Jr.

Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted.
–Martin Luther King, Jr.

The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.
–Martin Luther King, Jr.

We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.
–Martin Luther King, Jr.

The quality, not the longevity, of one’s life is what is important.
–Martin Luther King, Jr.

Anyone who becomes involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that there is a spirit manifest in the laws of the universe, a spirit vastly superior to that of man.
–Albert Einstein

A human being is a part of the whole, called by us ‘Universe,’ a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest—a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.
–Albert Einstein

Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.
–Oscar Wilde

The future rests, then, with the cultivation of those sides of our nature which are, in terms of immediate productivity and success, almost useless.
–John Nef

Shifting from the Old American Dream to the New American Dream

As World War II and America’s industrialization came to a close, the Old American Dream was mythologized for the creation of a new consumer society.

The tune rang true for some time; people went to college, started careers and built financially-independent families.

Nearly imperceptibly the foundations of this dream were hollowed out by the globalization of finance and trading. By now it’s painfully obvious that selling out American industry is the root of our pain. Since the Old American Dream has unceremoniously fizzled out, we’ve gotta look towards new opportunities.

In living the New American Dream, I’ve had to export myself to foreign cultures as well. This little irony is overcome by the opportunity to pursue my passions as a cultural explorer, but I’ll never forget the privileges of my birth that make it all possible. My gypsy lifestyle knows little opulence, but it’s as sure as rain a step above the two billion who live on a dollar a day.

An amazing family photoed in their home during our project to bring water to their village.

Living without basic necessities in question is more of a blessing than we might think. Generations before us laid their bodies on the machine for the dream of building a better society. We can’t forget their sacrifices while we enjoy the greatest expansion of leisure time since the whole experiment of civilization began. More paths have opened to the Good Life than we have ever collectively dreamt of. The question is, what path to do you take?

For now, mine’s a life is on the road. (I had to choose this pic since I’m in full tourist mode here.)

The act of teaching English provides little fulfillment in itself, but the combination of decent wages, low living costs and long vacations bring opportunities to explore and find continuous personal growth. My lifelong goals have yet to reach the horizon, but I see many trails into that horizon, causing the greatest elation I’ve ever felt. Travel Transmissions is an offering to you and yours’ of my experiences living the New American Dream. Come share yours’ as well!

Blackalicious – Finding

Of course Blackalicious had to make a song about Finding the Good Life. These soulful lyrics speak of living the Good Life as a process of a mediation through the highs and lows. In only a couple paragraphs they hit some of the best parts of living well: working, readjusting, controlling desire, family tradition, individual might, revolutionary struggle, the TRINITY, and balance. Well done brother!

Finding the Good Life

If you’ve secured life’s necessities (food, shelter, clothing, water…), then it’s high time to channel your natural strengths and abilities (there are at least 7 billion paths to the Good Life).

Your own brand of creativity is the truest path to good livin’. What do you do to elevate your soul to that place where you’ve lost your sense of time and even your sense of self? When do you experience that lucid freedom of honest self-expression?

My own path emerged by recognizing the metaphysical Trinity: Mind, Body and Soul. Fine-tuning the Trinity creates perfect happiness. Never lose respect for the virtues of balance, critical thinking, spirituality and community. Balance is particularly important as a moderator between the inevitable highs and lows of everyday living. Denying life’s negatives only obscures total happiness. It’s important for each person to understand their darker sides to leverage that knowledge to counteract their own positives and negatives.

Living well isn’t a mimicry of the saints; it’s anything but. It means rising to your highest victories, and sinking to your lowest lows, but loving it all the same. Embrace your raw humanity and recognize the fact that we’re in a continuous state of biological renewal until bodily death. Continuity is a mere trick of the mind to create a sense order in a universe that’s in relentless permutation. This means that every day (even every moment) is an opportunity to turn a corner and grab life by whatever you can get your hands on. Finally, don’t confuse the metaphors to mean that happiness is outside yourself. The path to happiness and real life is entirely internal, and when it’s authentically done it’s also eternal .

Be sure to see Blackalicious’ meditation on the importance of connecting your goals with faith, so that it becomes “Automatique.”

Blackalicious nails it again with their big-up to some of the greatest parts of finding the Good Life in their song “Finding.”

Australia’s Hilltop Hoods also wrote a great song, “I Love It” as a toast to the hard work it takes to find the Good Life.

Blackalicious – Automatique

Coming through subtle cues, “Automatique” talks about the trans-dimensional nature of the Good Life. When you connect with that unseen unifier of the universe, you’ll find that all work and rewards are automatic. Since it lies outside all frames of logic, you’ve gotta make it follow faith and the universe will empathize by unfolding the path before you. Finding the Good Life becomes automatic, so so so automatic.

Hilltop Hoods – I Love It

Australia’s Hilltop Hoods are true believers in the art of hip-hop. “I Love It” is a reflection on the hard work it’s taken them to reach the top of their game. This song is also a celebration, a toasting if you will, to Finding the Good Life.

Searching for the Good Life

With the inspiration of reason and emotion we’re led on a remarkable odyssey for happiness and the Good Life. This quest, the marvelous gift of our minds, is practically unseen anywhere else.

Many people think they’ve found good living with diversions like recreational drugs, senseless entertainment, and materialistic fantasies. It’s a horrific shame to see the neutralization of our minds’ endowments. Although these distractions aren’t evil in their own right, their indulgence inevitably caps creativity.

Committing to these distractions is a guaranteed course against self-fulfillment and genuine happiness. An important step on the drive for genuine happiness is to see beyond these empty vices.

The next step is to recognize the relativity of most social norms. Many of these values function to create economic stability, and don’t reflect universal, absolute moral mandates. The only mandates you should feel are your own. Never lose sight of the primacy of yourself.

Immediately drop the cultural blinders that create a craving for social status. Since the apex of economic productivity is fame and fortune, it’s important to recognize their futility when it comes to happiness. Obsessing over status and ego isn’t a part of this odyssey. Only take the journey when you’re ready to do it for yourself.

Clean living is never boisterous, so I choose to share my thoughts with the hope of inspiring even a handful of others to share their experiences, to inspire me. A happy life is the biggest of lives to live, but it’s rarely lived alone. Like all things, individuality has to be put on balance with community. Let’s trade the power of ideas and watch that insurmountable power of community as it grows.

For a little background music for the search, have a listen to ‘Searching’ by Blackalicious.

For more inspiration check out the song ‘Push’ by Common Market. With masterful lyricsm they illustrate how the same energy of the social pressures that hold us back can be turned around to break a path towards true freedom.

Common Market – Push

The smooth delivery of Common Market’s activist messages is unparalleled in the world of music. This song tells us to recognize our right to push back against the pressure to conform to societies’ uglier norms. You can’t fully live the Good Life before making this battle.

Blackalicious – Searching

Blackalicious is a group that never fails to inspire me to live better. This song is about searching for that unnameable yet oh-so tangible thrill of the Good Life.

What is the Good Life?

A basic requirement for most people is access to basic necessities like food, shelter, water and clothing. It makes me sad to say nearly 2 billion people live without these basics today. For that reason I continually try to remind myself of how fortunate I am because it’s too damn hard to be happy if you’re cold or hungry.

If you’re lucky enough to have these securities, focus on the people, places and things that make you happy. Flip the coin and take a look at the negatives (they are after-all just as much a part of life as anything). Reflect on the darker sides of life, how they relate to you, and how you can put ‘em to good use. Forget about chasing gold because it’s only gonna wear you down. Look instead toward life’s experiences that set your soul on fire. You’ve gotta live in the creative explosion of your abilities combined. Sharpen your Trinity (the mental, physical and spiritual), seek guidance through virtuous living, and foster healthy relationships with people and the land.

Cultures stewed in market economies tell the myth that a heartless commitment to a job justifies stifling your creativity. I wanna turn this story inside out with a simple question: Is the purpose of life to slave for material goods or to foster holistic self-awareness and genuine happiness? The answer’s obvious, but taking that next step on your path towards the Good Life isn’t always so clear. Although the early steps of the path often cause anxiety, don’t despair because the search is one of the most mysterious and beautiful experiences of life. During your search you’ll discover that the Good Life has always been inside, and the only blockade stopping it from coming out was you. Drop your barriers and you’ll find the power and independence of honest self-expression.

Meet Dave

Meet DaveUnfulfilled by consumer lifestyles, I left on a really slow trip around the world. As a 3rd eye traveler on the New American Dream, my aim is to inspire and cultivate conscious living along the way....Read More...

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