Re-Up: Personal Freedom at 27
“This is the real secret of life — to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.”
- Alan Watts
The days of 2020 have coalesced into one extensive experience. It is one that has tossed me into several dispositions, appraised the fortitude of my tenacity, and at times, tested the durability of my cognitive process. Time goes by like the turning of a page, each moment so elusive, nearly impossible to stop and think before it’s gone. Like many I’ve spent the present looking at the past for insight on the future, and what came to pass was certain apprehension.
By the end of June, it was clear to me that a change of method was necessary in how I went about my day-to-day, one that would allow me to stay true to the intentions set within the words of my previous posts, grow from them, and apply those subsequent morals towards the personal thresholds that have been staring at me in the face all of this time; all it took were a few deep breaths. It is now with this mindset that I am able to launch the second installation of Prophetic Discourse, adopt the sentiments that belong to me—and only me—and to make firm, declarative statements in the now. It is November 21st, 2020: someone I love was born on this day.
Since the four months that have passed from the beginning of this experiment, nothing in my life has neither changed nor improved significantly but the craft and conviction itself. The rendered experience from the circumstances that have occurred throughout, those that are sure to disinter themselves among my future posts, are the ones I hope to deconstruct and put towards the collective strive of Black liberation, historical awareness, and individualistic celebration— starting with yours truly.
Within that time it was reinforced—again and again—until I had finally gotten it right, that the purposed destination would be hopelessly impossible without personal freedom, first and foremost. I came to find in many ways the amount of obstructions that prevented me from doing such. And so for the month of July, up until now, all certainties within my life were met with utter uncertainty. Like the great philosopher Socrates before me...who was also Black... all that I know, is that I know nothing.
These obstructions I’m referring to, one of my most prominent is my inclination to overthink just about everything at once, and then reflexively all-together. Every day my ego is put in check from the innumerable amount of expectations that I find a way to convince myself I haven’t met, and it’s taken learning the craft of meditation to scratch the surface in being able to discern my thoughts. I bring this up because, like me, the disarray can make it difficult to receive the message, let alone allow others the opportunity to know themselves better. Only after I could slow things down did things become clear.
For others, their obstruction might be the opposite. I’ve gathered that this is more than likely the most time anyone has ever been forced to sit with themselves and their own thoughts for a very long time, nearly pressed to accept this distressing reality for what it is, and that maybe—for a particular group of people— it is more difficult to do so, and any discrepancies between the present and their own self-regarding fantasies have caused them to further discredit what is. Regardless of what you or your neighbor’s is however, there is no excuse in stalling the progress of the human experience for your own convenience. If ever there were a blueprint to appeasing any inner chaos within ourselves, it would simply involve sitting down and taking a few deep breaths: the art of meditation.
The efficacy of meditation is not continent upon your established beliefs. To witness a glimmer of peace is based on the trust of our own personal, direct experience. The process is universal, timeless and does not distinguish between nations, cultures or anything else. Indeed meditation allows you to bring your own philosophy, way of thinking or faith into your practice, but simply sitting and observing the moment is omnipresent to us all. In the moment we sit down and let everything go, we are simply sitting in the shared, human condition.
I bring this to attention after often worrying about those within my own community who are unaware of the dire necessity to know oneself as a Black individual in America. For too long my own lack of discernment caused me to fit into the archetypal role that was presented to me as the quintessential male, indeed, for reasons I am now too old to care for or to remember. My guess is that it was easier to fit into a role, rather than to create one of authenticity on my own. But it is that same role that has affected the extent to which we can communicate, love and receive love in return; our insecurities stem from a place of unknowing and not being able to find the source.
And so it is with my first post that I stress the practice of inner peace in Black men particularly; an entire community’s progress is dependent upon our ability to be comfortable with ourselves. I will admit that I myself have a long way to go; my hope is that by continuing to share with you all, my thoughts, feelings, heroes and history, that I continue to be held accountable for the threshold of authentic, Black excellence that is within our grasp. Here's to 27.