I Fell In Love Once and Once Was All I Needed
By: Francisco Dosal
He drove down to the lake like every other Sunday. No longer for a swim or to talk to the locals who, after Sunday mass, loved taking out the grill and drinking down some “cold ones.” Instead, he now drove his truck around the lake watching the sun slowly disappear until, after growing sick of driving in infinite circles, he stopped and lit a cigarettes as he stared at people grilling or at whoever was swimming in the lake. A smile would sneak its way in and he thought about jumping in the lake or joining the local grillers like he once did. But he caught himself and dismissed the ideas. He could not return to that lake. He had too many memories there. He felt as if he returned alone, he was accepting something but not knowing what that something was bothered him.
He remembered coming to the lake. Waving at everyone as they returned from Sunday mass. He could smell the charcoal as it traveled up his nostrils, it always made his stomach growl with hunger and after laying their blue blanket under the green summer grass a small mist would emerge. Their mouths would water as the aroma of BBQ travelled in every direction. They would always swim for a short time and would walk over to however invited them to eat. After eating they always left, and she would always forget her sandals somewhere near the lake. It was not until he was ready to pull in her street when she would remember.
“I fell in love once and once is all you need right?” he thought as the sun started to sink underneath the Earth. His cigarette was near its end. Flicking it out into the pavement he lit another. Someone yelled in excitement as they cannon balled into the lake. He remembered jumping in that very same spot as he held her hand. “I don’t’ want to move on,” he thought as he exhaled the smoke. “If I do. I will probably grow to love her as well but than what is the point of love? If I can grow to love anyone than love does not exist. Then I never loved her. Meaning it was a lie. Meaning love is a lie. Than what is love?” His mind raced with thoughts and ideas, hoping he could answer that question but nothing ever came to mind. He finished his second cigarette as a couple stepped out the lake. He did not know if it was disgust or jealousy but his stomach flipped up-side down.
He drove around for another lap than broke away from the infinite circle. Driving down the road, he could almost hear her giggling and the smell of her coconut conditioner, which he loved so much. He looked over and hoped his eyes would play a trick on him. He hoped he would see her for just a second. Sadly, he saw an empty spot in his truck. He sighed as his throat tightened up. He felt regret inside. He wished he was braver against love. He wished he would go back in time but he could not. He would have to redeem himself in some other way. He grew agitating and furious because he was scared. Scared because he knew that the love he had for her would now eventually disappear and he would date another and all this would be another memory. He now wanted to love once and only once but life goes on. It was all this useless thinking that had ruined his relationship and here it was again ruining him like it always did. His mind continued to race and without noticing, he was slowly pressing down on the gas. The road was completely dark now as he drove down a misty road but he could see the street that belonged to her. He grew angrier because now he would be passing the street light that lit green.
“Babe, I forgot my sandals,” he heard a ghostly voice whisper. He was going 85mph when he made a sharp U-turn.
An ambulance showed up to a wrecked classic truck. It was so demolished they could not make out the exact year or model. Two men rushed to the scene. A body was found inside. He was faintly breathing but breathing nonetheless. Managing to pull the individual out without doing any harm they saw a bloody face and his torn shirt.
“No,” the body said painfully but neither of them could hear his weak voice.
He didn’t want to be taken anywhere because he felt that he was ready for whatever came after life. He had loved and been loved. What greater joy could this world give him. He faintly smiled knowing he would die side by side this love and not watch it faintly disappear and be replaced by regret. If only he understood this earlier. Understood that she was his first love and that letting her go because of fear was a horrible mistake.
Once inside the ambulance they finally heard him. “I fell in love once and once was all I needed.”
He awoke days later in a hospital bed to the familiar scent of coconut.
I’m no valley girl or someone who can not live without a phone but I saw something poet and artistic as I stared at my now broken phone and wondered why I did not want it replaced.
I think everyone agrees that their phone describes them or that a phone can say a little bit about a person. and if someone’s looking to add more of who they are to their phone, they can buy designer, colored, and or whatever kind of protector case. (I’ve even seen a cow case). Your phone is your medium. Just as the canvas is to a painter.
I have left my phone without a case for some time now. I want to say because I wear my heart upon my sleeve. subsequently it eventually fell and the screen cracked horrifically. I thought about replacing it, since I have insurance, but for the first time my broken phone reflected me a bit. I don’t’ know if its emotionally, spiritually, or something else but I always have felt broken. Running my finger across my phone screen. I can feel the sharpness of the glass and it describes how I refuse the affection of others. Perhaps this is why may leaves their phone damaged. So, I like my phone more than I did before and with its broken screen I think it makes a good rebel and fashion statement.
At the age of twelve, I smoked my first cigarette, drank my first alcoholic beverage, and was associated with gang-affiliated individuals, an easy lifestyle. That same year my mother told me, “Las puertas pal dismadre siempre estan abiertas.” At the time I had no idea what she meant, “The doors to chaos are always open.” That same year my family and I crossed the border into The United States. Hungry and having drank all the water, the sentence played over and over as I walked endlessly.
As I lay on the ground one cold night, the wind no longer blew against me. It blew through me. The ground’s vibration no longer tickled my back. I now shook with the world. I found myself between life and death. One understands a lot more when ready to cross over. Ironic, is it not? But I lived, and crossing into The United States I said I would create something out of noting. I did not want to be the next rapper, singer, entrepreneur, or the next star. I would go to college, join the army, or just simply join the labor force.
That is what most young immigrants dream of. Sadly, in the end, it is nearly impossible. Politicians believe we are convicts transporting drugs for cartels. What better life would I have if I worked for a cartel? What is better than respect, money, and power? An honest life! So, rather than a dishonest and chaotic life, let us join an honest nation and contribute to society and become honest men through education, fraternity, and/or through the labor force. Yet again, we are stopped by schools we cannot attend because we lack the money and political support. We are not born citizens so we cannot join the military. All we can do is work and try to do the best we can to make something out of nothing while others claim their jobs were stolen.
Preventing young immigrants from further education and, despite the fact that we have loyalty to no other country, forbidding us from joining the military leaves us cornered, defenseless. Without the options or possibility of living an honest and better life, we are left but to live as criminals whether we want to or not. Working under a false SSN is a felony and driving without a license is a crime. The basic tools for living are luxuries to us. Every step we take is a crime as we are undocumented immigrants. Some will turn to crime as the doors to chaos welcomes them with loving open arms. Others continue the struggle to justify their existence. I am not asking for immediate immigration reform, but when innocent eight-year-old children are crossing the border alone for a better life, something must be done. Pave the road ahead and guide them away from the wicked. Ignore young immigrants and those with horrible intentions will adopt them. The children come because they need help. If young immigrants continue being ignored, or worse, attacked by angry mobs, the doors to chaos will engulf them.
Love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love. The more I say it, the more it loses it’s value. Basic economics. Quality over quantity is always better. I think, a man should say it once (I’m no woman so I can not speak for them) and that’s when he realizes it. So, anyone can say “I love you,” but not everyone can turn love, a word, into action and into existence. And true love, in my opinion, cannot be found. Instead, it is something created as partners walk side by side, till the end. The irony, you won’t know if it was true love untill the end.
Day of the dead, a holiday celebrated in Mexico and in other Latin American cultures. It is a day that celebrates and remind those who have past over that we have not forgotten them. Sadly, residing in North America, I have never celebrated this holiday. I have fugue memories of when I was a child of the holiday and although they are faint I do remember this woman. she was staring at me with dark eyes and yet being surrounded by all those colorful feathers, I grew curious at how someone so dark could be so colorful. This is an oil painting I did of how I remember that woman.
Pizzica (Italian for pinch) is an Italian folk dance done mostly by pairs of the opposite sex. The female dances with different men as she holds a scarf. After the dance she gives the scarf to the man that has “pinched” her heart. It is a dance with so much energy, elegance, and passion that men find themselves transfixed on the woman dancing. I have to admit I was enticed into buying a plane ticket to the Salento peninsula and gaining the heart of a pizzica dancer. But until I have enough money for a plane ticket I decided to paint her with energy, elegance, and passion.
I was bored. And for those who know me, know that when I’m bored I decide to try something new. I sat in my bed wondering what to do but sadly nothing came to mind for days. than days became weeks and weeks became months. slowly slipping into depression I finally caught myself before it was too late. I was scrolling through images and saw a photo of a flamenco. I fell in love and an unknown urge to paint her arose. Since than I have continued to paint. This is that flamenco.
Nativism: Ideas Within
By: Francisco Dosal
An individual is taught how to communicate, how to calculate mathematical equations to predict outcomes, and through the practice of a religion is taught how to worship a higher being. But what if these very teachings of communication, mathematics, and the belief of a higher being are actually preexisting ideas that all human beings possess during birth without the need of any foreign influences? The philosophical theory nativism suggests that even without any form of teaching an individual is born with innate ideas. A definition for nativism is as followed: “the belief that the human brain is capable of spontaneous or innate ideas that are not derived from external sources” “nativism.” Nativism explains an individual’s mind is capable of producing subconscious thoughts and ideas without the influences of others, as opposed to empiricism that suggests all ideas, knowledge, and facts derive from external experience and foreign influences. Nativism suggests that ideas are within an individual from birth and claims that regardless of foreign influences or external experiences; an individual will produce innate ideas and gain knowledge. In Charles Seife, Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea, he explains what sounds similar to nativism: “Not even knowledge can be created out of nothing, which means that all ideas- all philosophies, all notions, all future discoveries- already exist in people’s brains when they are born” (Seife 95). An individual cannot be taught to think, thinking for any human beings comes naturally, and although every human being is not born with the same ideas, all individuals do possess the innate idea to communicate, innately create a system to organize and group individuals and objects, and the idea of a higher being.
To this day much there is much speculation of how the human race obtained the ability to create a system to communicate. All human beings are born with the innate idea to communicate with one another. Oral languages, sign language, and body language are different patterns of the innate idea to communicate with another human being. The idea to establish or create a form of communication is innate for every human being. It is vital for survival. Therefore, regardless of an individual learning a proper language or not one will create a form of communication due to the innate idea. The human brain has a section in the left or right hemisphere, depending whether an individual is left or right handed, where communication data is stored. Having a proper station in the brain where communication data can be stored proves that the human brain has the potential, or rather a preexisting purpose, to create or learn a form of communication regardless of being exposed to external influences like English, body gestures, or the American Sign Language (ASL). Take for example: during the time a child is inside the womb of a mother; the child cannot be taught how to communicate before it is exposed to a form of communication. Although, the child cannot speak a language until it is out the womb and taught a form of communication; the child in fact communicates with the mother by using verbal noises and hand gestures. The child’s crying may be attempting to explain to the mother it is hungry or needs a diaper change. As for a hand gesture like opening and closing its fists indicates it wants to hold someone or something. The child is born with the innate idea to communicate in whatever fashion and the mother simply guesses what the child is trying to say. It is not till later the child is taught a proper language or a form of communication that properly explains it needs and wants. All individuals during their few months into the world have the innate idea to communicate with others. Regardless of being taught a form of communication an individual will create some form of communication. Just an individual regardless of being taught calculus could potentially learn it.
Without being taught, an individual’s mind innately arranges data and groups objects and individuals. This ability cannot be taught, it is simply done. An individual is not taught to group objects together, one’s mind does it on its own without noticing. In Charles Seife’s, The Biography of a Dangerous Idea, he explains that prehistoric human beings would count into groups such as binary and quinary groups. He explains, “From theses fragments, researchers discovered that Stone Age mathematics were a bit more rugged than modern ones. Instead of blackboards, they used wolves” (Seife 6). He continued to explain “Archaeologist Karl Absolom, sifting through Czechoslovakian dirt, uncovered a 30,000-year-old wolf bone with a series of notching carved into it” (Seife 6). It is not clear whether the carving indicated the days or the amount of kills the prehistoric man committed. But, it is clear that mathematics was and still is within an individual’s mind without the need of teaching. If one is asked, “what kind of car would you like to own?” The mind automatically precedes data that are relevant to the question, such as: types, models, and years of a specific kind of vehicle. The mind does not proceed with useless data, such as: kinds of desktop computers, locations, or what he/she is going to eat later on the day. This ability to group objects and individuals eventually evolves into mathematics. One may state that mathematics is not innate but is an ability taught from teacher to student in a mathematics class. If this was true, than who taught the first human being to add and subtract? The simplest form of math is when the mind arranges objects and individuals into categories adding individuals into categories or subtracting objects. As this system becomes more complex than just grouping two objects together; mathematics, geometry, and calculus arises from the simplest innate idea of grouping and processing data. Complexity starts with simplicity, one cannot start calculus without understand addition and subtraction and as a child and through adulthood, an individual will forever encounter numbers and learns that nature itself is governed by numbers. For example the golden ration is the blueprint for all of nature’s aesthetic creations. The idea of arranging information like a database cannot be taught; an individual does it every day without realizing it and when an individual encounters a question that logic and reason cannot answer; the innate idea of a higher being becomes the answer.
Christianity, Buddhism, Catholicism, Judaism, and others have been established in attempts to rightfully worship a higher being and or beings. Some suggest that the word of mouth has brought the teachings of religion into today’s society, but who is responsible for the idea of Christianity, Judaism, or any other religion? Who was the one to open their mouth first? As a child, and into adulthood, the wonders and beauty of the universe have encouraged an individual to ask himself, “Who is responsible for such creation?” The universe is not able to teach nor could it force an individual into worshiping a creator. And without any external influences, an individual naturally worships a higher being. In G. W. Leibniz, New Essay’s on Human Understanding, a character Theophilus debates with Philalethes that the human mind possesses the innate idea of a higher being; he explains, “God came in that way from a very old and very widespread word-of-mouth process; But it seems that nature has helped to bring men to it without anyone teaching them: the wonders of the universe have made them think of a higher power” (Leibniz 16). It seems to be the desire for an individual to worship a higher being for bringing forth the universes existence and even life itself. For example, some early civilizations, like the Egyptians, worshiped the sun as their higher being. As opposed to the darkness and cold conditions of the dark; the sun provided them and the rest of the world with a sense of security, warmth, and the possibility of life. Eventually the sun was made into stories and began to symbolize a higher being and even symbolized as hope. An individual is not taught the idea of hope although it is done naturally. Hope is a form of faith and faith is the belief and complete trust in someone or something. Whether it is the sun or another idea of higher being, the idea of a higher being is an uncontrolled ability, taught or not, and individual practices it. Whether one accepts or denies the idea, it is completely upon the individual.
An individual’s ability to communicate with another, the skill to establish a system of organizing data, and the idea to worship a higher being are in fact preexisting ideas inside the mind of an individual. Regardless of being exposed to foreign influences or external experiences an individual possess this knowledge. Some may state that nature teaches or experiences give the human mind the knowledge, but it is one’s personal interpretations of one’s nature and experiences that uncover inner knowledge. Without these and others basic innate ideas the possibilities of bringing forth future ideas become impossible to reach. By denying simplistic innate ideas one denies the stepping stone into complex thoughts and ideas. Complexity starts with simplicity just as the first stone eventually became the Great Pyramids of Egypt or the Great Wall of China. One has the answers to the universe within without even knowing. All the knowledge is inside waiting to be uncovered, waiting to be hacked and released. Intelligence is within every human being.
Idea. Dictionary.com. Web. 29 January 2013.
Leibniz, G.W. New Essays on Human Understanding, trans. by Peter Remnant and Jonathan
Bennett (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1981), p. 74-88.
Nativism. Dictionary.com. Web. 29 January 2013.
Seife, Charles. Zero the Biography of a Dangerouse Idea. Penguin Group Inc. 2000.
Existentialism: Do You Exist?
By: Francisco Dosal
An existentialist is an individual who exists naturally and not through what religion and government considers right and civilized. It emphasizes an individual should not make decisions based from legislative institutions, governmental laws or religious’ beliefs. These forms of organizations have established what is morally and ethically correct. And in following their views we are granted freedom and promised a holy land for one’s cooperates. An existentialist does not live civil in accordance to any legislative institution for rewards. Instead, one is honest and living accordingly to their authentic institution. In hopes a more natural world would arise. Sadly, this remains a vision and dream as individuals continue to exist through the fundamentals of a foreign legislative institution. Living through the idea of what another thinks is an ideal life is, is not living at all. One’s calling will never be discovered. For example, one cannot discover one’s essence if the individual exists through the laws of a government and not the laws within. The moment an individual is exposed and influenced by any legislative institution, one becomes factitious rather than human. So break away! Live through what is within and live what is essential to the heart! But along the journey, as an existentialist, one must be responsible for the actions and the repercussions that follow after one’s genuine nature. A definition for existentialism is as followed, “opposed to rationalism and empiricism, that stresses the individual’s unique position as a self-determining agent responsible for the authenticity of his or her choices,” “existentialism.” So why does one not commit more natural actions? Actions not based on a church’s or government’s morality? In the end, we fear responsibility and turn to a guide. A guide that one eventual fears by disregarding all that is within. And so, by vanquishing our ideals one is preventing the universe from evolving forward into whatever it is naturally meant to become. An existentialist believes that preventing an individual from committing natural actions, whether good or bad, prevents the universe from becoming its true natural state of being. One must not fear the actions their bones want to perform. One must not hold back the words the tongue desires to speak. One must not fear the essence within! For a life lived with fear is denying existence itself. Live the morals that guide you or take responsibility for an unnatural factitious world. Live what is righteous within and encourage others to do the same. For laws do not and should not create mankind’s ideal on what an ethical life is. Instead, mankind creates its own. And as an individual exists naturally throughout life, the law will also grow naturally. So mankind should not fear a factitious legislative institutions. Instead, one should guide it so that we may see a more natural growing society.
So, the question is: what is an unnatural legislative institution? As mankind first rose to its feet, naturally every forms of civilization throughout history created some sort of legislative institution to keep peace. Groups of individuals created simple laws in order to keep mankind safe from injustice. Sadly, these legislative institutions eventually become tainted by the forces of greed and control. So should civilizations create legislative institutions if in the end they are poisoned? In today’s society, mankind fears their legislative institution. An individual can look into any religious or into any form of government and will notice regulations of laws that command an individual on how to exist rationally in an irrational world. Christianity, Catholicism, Islamism, Judaism, and every other religious organization that has taken form in this world, has many purposes in our society. One, of course, is to guide an individual throughout life with what they declare is morally correct. These morals and ethics are not suggested to any individual. Instead, are rather implanted through fear, a tool proven powerful throughout history. Morals and ethics should not be forcefully bolted into an individual’s mind. An ethic is obtained as an individual experiences life and sees what ethics best fits their character. For example, one individual believes it is right to take food from others in order to provide for a family as opposed to an individual who works for food. Neither is wrong nor right. They simply have lived differently and as one should, live by what is believed necessary. Therefore, it is clear many have different views on what is ethically correct. A definition for ethics follows, “moral principles that governs a person’s behaviors” “Ethics.” So one is the ruler of conscience. An individual’s ethics are not to be forced unto life by another force. Ethics must be created by one’s personal law and like any law, some eventually must be re-written or abolished. Like the individual who stole for food no longer sees it ethical and now gained a job or the individual who worked for food may see it is easier to steal. Mankind would constantly be moving, learning, and adapting, if the fear of punishment would not interfere.
The fear of a higher being has kept an individual from properly existing in the universe. Fear, throughout human history, has kept society from naturally growing from what it is, into to what it could become. Fear itself keeps an individual from establishing individuality and authenticity. It keeps an individual from following their conscience. Sartre states, “As far as men go, it is not what they are that interests me, but what they can become” (Sartre). An existentialist cannot exist in the liking of an unnatural institution. An individual must establish what they claims to be rational decisions, despite fear of punishment. Until then, an individual is not natural but rather spurious, making one a nonexistent being. To exist in this universe an individual acts upon ones natural instinct, never applying the laws of any government or religion into their lives. One simply acts. As Sartre explains in his speech, Existentialism is Humanism, “Man will only attain existence when he is what he purposes to be” (Sartre). An individual who lives and interacts through the perspective of legislative institutions does not have an honest conscience. Instead, the conscience mind that one carries within is the offspring of laws governed by greed and control. No longer does a society of conscience men create laws, but instead are now being molded by their very own creation. Man has indeed been created in the image of God. Sadly, a God created by unconscious men. An individual should abide to only one God. And that is the God that dwells within. In the end no law can be sacred but the laws one abides by. No institution should be created for it will be tainted as others drink from it. So live naturally and exist.
To exist in any universe one must interact others as they do the same. So the question is: what does it mean to exist in this world? A definition for existing follows, “Be found, especially in a particular place or situation” “Exist.” It means to be found in a society, found in a particular place in the world, and be present in a particular part in history. But how can anyone be found in a society, in a particular place in the world, or present in any part of history when individual’s existence resembles another? To exist, an individual must prove the presence of someone or something. In order to do so, the something or someone must be found in a particular place in the universe. If an individual was enforced to wear a mask produced by the legislative branch it lived by, no individual would ever be discovered. One would look just as similar to the rest. Most individuals in today’s society exist in the image of a legislative institution, disguising one true essence with that of a religious or governmental mask. Therefore, individuality does not exist and nor does mankind. An individual must exist without a mask, manufactured by a legislative institutions. And so an individual must take the mask off and proudly declare their existence. They keep an individual from finding one’s nature and pursuing one’s individuality and discovering one’s ethics of laws. Anyone or anything that exists naturally does not abide by the nature assigned to be considered right. Instead, they exist in whatever fashion and in whatever purpose they purpose. As Sartre explains in his lecture, Existentialism is Humanism, “Man is nothing else but that which he makes of himself” (Sartre). An individual should not exist in a fashion that does not fit comfortable. There is no right way to live, there is no right law to live by, and there is no right legislative institution to base one’s ethics. There are only an individual’s instincts to act upon that allow one to live naturally, and then can an individual truly exist. A member of the existentialist movement, Friedrich Nietzsche says, “You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist” (Nietzsche). Nietzsche explained that there is no right and correct way to live. And it is true. The right way, the correct way, and the righteous way of living cannot be found. Therefore it does not exist. One moment in history legislative institution establish a law as righteous, yet years later it is declared horrific and unhuman. For example: In 1619 the first African was brought to America and enslaved by force. It was believes slavery was righteous and the only way America could grow economically. The greed for money and power cause the American government to create an unnatural law that declared slaves as property and nothing more. It was not until 1865 that the Thirteen Amendment declared slavery wrong and a horrific idea. One cannot exist by blindly accepting what a legislative institution considers is right and correct for they do not nor will ever know.
So live freely. Start by breath and walking in your own fashion. Grow confidence in your convictions just as others in the past did. Jesus Christ, Leonardo Da Vinci, John Lock, Albert Einstein, Marin Luther King, and others for example did not exist through what their institutions declared as the right and correct way to exist. Jesus Christ broke out and spoke his truth. Leonardo Da Vinci was the first to practice and document anatomy, knowing the practice was illegal. Through the belief of John Locke’s natural born rights; he influenced the American Revolution against Parliament. Albert Einstein broke away from traditional physics and gave birth to modern physics. Martin Luther King went against his government, demanded justice, and sought to bring forth a brighter future. All these individuals, and others, brought forth change through their nature and not through the nature of their legislative institution at the time. Human existence cannot advance forward without breaking the laws of expired and or manipulated legislative institutions. So break free and change the world by simply living in the fashion desired and whatever the outcome one must remember to take full responsibly of the repercussions that follow.
Existentialism finally explains that whatever the outcome is in the decision made from natural or unnatural being, one must now take full responsibility for one’s actions. Through existentialism, the individual is held responsible for their action, whether good, bad, genuine, or not, one must take full responsibility for its outcome. Whatever is caused due to the existence of the individuals, one is responsible. One must understand that the actions of an individual do not simply occur and vanish the moment one walks away from the scene. An individual must realize that existing in any way fashions mankind. So it is best to exist honest and natural. Just as John Locke’s fashion of natural born rights, fashioned mankind and influenced the American Revolution. He must take the responsibility that his beliefs caused the deaths of lives during the American Revolution.
Good, evil, right, and wrong are words and nothing more. The universe is neither good nor evil, it simply is. The universe simply is and so goes for a human being. Whatever an individual chooses to live by, one must live it passionately and take responsibility for its repercussion. Because, society does not change, and mankind does not simply adapt. It is the actions of an individual that causes society to become what it is.
Ethics. Dictionary.com. Web. 5 December 2012.
Exist. Dictionary.com. Web. 5 December 2012.
Nietzsche, Friedrich. Brianyquites.com. Web. 5 December 2012.
Sartre, Jean-Paul. Existentialism is Humanism. World Publishing Company. 1956. Print.