Just recently I came back from a very difficult business trip to Dubai. Only thing I enjoyed was the view from the office, as I spent in there 12 hours daily for a full week. My journey was truly epic.
I was fighting bugs, like ancient monsters, repelling requests from other departments like raids of rogue nomads, getting through the new version of the binary for the Appstore release like it was a caravan traveling through the scorched desert.
But the sun of the desert was the sun of yesterday.
Today I am looking at the European autumn, enjoying my mate tea on my terrace. Trees flutter with their colorful leaves stroked by wind and the rhythm of their whispers seems to be synchronized with a breath of my newborn son sleeping on my chest.
I look at my son and then at these trees. Then the realization comes through.
Autumn is a parabola of the passing of time. One thing in life never changes, – it goes on.
Our biographies are like the autumn trees, full of colorful leaves – all the different colors, are like frames of a movie of our life.
Some will float away carried by the wind.
I listen to Anathema now. The band’s tone is like a voice of autumn.
Weather systems. Somehow I cannot break the connection that this band has evolved with me. The brutal anger of the Dying Wish. The desolate music of Kingdom. Terrifying
dark, Alternative 4.
These were the tunes of my early twenties. When I was seeking my spiritual path. And I was roaming through some dark woods. This was not surprisingly a time when I wrote some of my best-received horror stories. But at what cost?
Grim music of early Anathema albums was my soundtrack. I managed to scratch the surface of the abyss back then. And these dark melodies were the beacon…
Yet I managed to find my way back into the light.
And so it seems with Anathema.
If you pick their latest albums, you realize that how much they changed. There is hope now in their music. There is a reflection upon life and its purpose.
There is peace in words of such ballads as “Lightning song”.
“I found my place
In time and space
In hope and faith”
Quite a leap from the depressing lyrics of Alternative 4… ”Come and hide me from this terrible reality”. Don’t you think?
And guess what is the title of their latest album – The Optimist.
It is a hopeful feeling to see that one of your favorite bands seems to be evolving in synchronization with the development of your life.
Maybe you have to go through the darkness to find the light?
Here comes the calming voice off Lee Douglas from Anathema.
“Your world is everything you ever dreamed of
If only you can open up your mind and see
The beauty that is here”
I look at the face of my sleeping son.
—Post from “Sword in the woods” archive—
Rosary – powerful tool of spiritual combat.
Kettlebell – there is a reason, why Roman gladiators used kettlebells as a base of their training.
Yerba Mate – every man needs his drug
E-Book Reader – because as Mark Twain said “A person that does not read has no advantage of that who does not know how to read”.
Notebook – writing crystalizes the ever-flowing life into something more tangible.
People in every religion are the same, but not every religion is the same
Religion is a filter through which people perceive the Truth, or as one might call it the Ultimate Reality. The filter comes from the boundaries of our human mind, the Truth comes from the Divine.
Warriors life is ought to be based on Truth. Because the Truth shapes our Codex, the principles we follow and the masters that we serve.
And don’t be fooled, by thinking you can serve no one. You are just human, you will always have master. Even it will be just the needs of your own body.
Choice of religion in warriors life is paramount. One might say – I don’t need religion, I just need spirituality. You will be a fooled again.
Spirituality is a vague term for transcendent experience, and that is anchored in the Ultimate Reality. If you will try to embrace it, your mind will make an attempt to grasp the meaning of it. Hence it will apply the filter of your own convictions and your own limitations. You will follow religion. Even if that will be just the one of your own.
So I chose to follow the footsteps of people greater than me.
To benefit from their learnings, to avoid their mistakes, to take their advice and to consciously apply on how will I perceive That what is Transcendent.
I choose my religion conciously.
I embrace it, with all the faults and corruption of the organization that stands behind it. I decide to apply the filter, the belief structure developed through centuries by an imperfect organisation, because I know for a fact that even a poor author can create a masterpiece in a moments of great inspiration.
I chose to be Roman Catholic. Against the world, against the enemies internal and external and sometimes even against myself.
I chose this, because I attempt to see beyond the people that represent the organization, and see what it meant to represent. I chose to see the whole battlefield not just the corruption and disruption in the ranks of my own army.
And that choice, step by step leads me closer to the Ultimate Reality, and reveals the the universe for what it truly is. It reveals the true scale of the celestial war we are part of.
It shows me the true, malignant face of my Enemy.
But it also shows me that I we have Powerful Allies next to me. And a sword and a shield in my hands. We are the Ecclesia militans.
But that is another story.
“Merely having an open mind is nothing. The object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid.”
So here we are.
Guys, Boyfriends, Husbands, Fathers, Weekend Warriors.
Probably a very last generation of those who used to run in childhood with sticks fighting trolls in a courtyard, who organised water balloon battles against those stinkers from the neighbouring block , who wrestled in sand, got their knees bruised while climbing trees.
We were the last ones to avoid, the omnipresent stigma of virtual reality. And our heads were filled with dreams.
Big, epic dreams.
You can become anyone you want to, we were told. Rock star, general, football player. Fucking astronaut.
Just go ahead and believe that. Its is in our guys, warriors DNA, after all. To reach for the heights, to climb the highest peak (and then drop your pants down and pee from the top).
When I was a kid I wanted to be a pirate. Or world famous writer.
I have always pictured myself rolling through life accompanied by an elevating soundtrack like in oscar winning movie, carrying a bloodstained armor, waving to crowds of fans with my left hand and giving autographs with the other, flying into space, preventing alien invasion, shitting with epicness.
And here I am, staring eleven hours per day at the numbers on the screen, rolled into the wheels of humongous corporate machine, changing diapers by night, dreading the invasion of bills by the end of the month.
I am Husband, Father, Breadwinner. Manager. Weekend Warrior.
And sometimes I find it hard to distinguish myself from a zombie. Does it have to be, that dream of greatness come back now only while playing another Witcher game on my PC?
It is time to realise, that we are not ever to drop our childhood dreams, but transcend with them. That we shouldn’t treat life as the ultimate excuse for not living up to our greatest ambitions. A key to success is to pursue passions in spare time, while cherishing every moment of our daily struggles.
And remember you Fathers – having a family to care for is not only source of strength to face life adventures, but it’s an adventure itself.
I am a father and I am a warrior.
And I am living my quest in my daily experiences.
In my journeys, adventures, battles in the arena of everyday life. In stories told through the eyes of someone who despite coming of age, still lives his childhood dreams. Dreams of fighting trolls, climbing skyscrapers, reaching the heights of heights.
If you ever felt, that life is more, than a repetitive cycle of daily responsibilities, I am sure you will find yourself in some of my stories, if not all of them.
So, hey!… Join me on the epic quest called life.
/Post from my archived blog “Sword in the woods”/
There will be a time when you will be alone. You will not avoid it.
There will be time when you will be abandoned, forgotten, left astray…
Maybe there are people around you that love you, but there will be time when they will be gone. Maybe you will have to take that challenge, change your job, you town, your country, your life. Maybe you will dip into failure, and the ones who had your back will turn it on you. Maybe you will achieve success and the ones whom you cherished will not recognize you anymore.
You will be left alone. No matter how hard you will try, you will have to face it eventually.
Maybe you will get sick. Maybe you will get misunderstood. Maybe you will have an accident. Maybe you will get old and everyone who ever mattered will just fade away.
No matter what happens, this time will come some day. You will be alone.
And then you will have to do it.
Play with open cards. Take the veil off and look into your own heart. It is then, when the answer to this one question will define on how this loneliness will treat you:
Did I live my life true to myself or was my life just a mere reflection in the eyes of the others?
Radek from the Blue Moon