SELF IMPORTANCE: WHY WE USE THE WORD INTELLECTUAL SO LOOSELY TODAY

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“I think therefore I am.”


We live in a society today where there is so much self-importance. Everyone feels Image result for galileo galileithat they are unique enough for everyone to get to know. It’s the main reason why social media is such a big medium. You’re taking pictures of yourself, to posting comments, and even sitting around waiting for likes. But too often we hear people refer to themselves as geniuses. The self-importance has gotten so high, we are coining ourselves terms that normally we give to people; not people giving to themselves. A person does something or says something, and we say, “Wow, that persons’ a genius. ” Now we have so many people, especially public figures who consider themselves geniuses. And I am very skeptical of people calling themselves intelligent geniuses.

See, in my opinion, intellectualism is a broad spectrum of knowledge covering Related imagemany topics in which aptitude is higher than most or the majority. Now, on the other hand, being smart to means having a degree of knowledge on a given topic. So yes, you can be smart, yet lack intelligence. For example, we have some smart celebrities, but Stephen Hawking is intelligent. And as the topic pertains to myself, I pride myself on being smart. Even though I have an IQ that is much higher than the average. For those that don’t know, the average IQ is 110, and mine falls between 160-170. But if you ask me, I still feel more smart than intelligent. But what is it about people today that make them think they’re intellectuals? And to me, it has a lot to do with hype.

We give people kudos for so much that we inadvertently contribute to the flatting up of people’s egos. They start to think that they are geniuses instead of contributing their work to luck, talent, and hard work. Now don’t get me wrong, we have had some pretty smart people to have done a lot before their time. But note Related imagethat they did not call themselves intelligent. Then again, intellect is a broad term which can take on so many meanings. Musicians, painters, sculptures, scientist, and writers have all fallen under this umbrella of intellectual. And for the more monumental artist, the term genius applies. And who would I be referring to when speaking of their cognitive abilities?

I am talking about men like Beethoven, Da Vinci, Albert Einstein, and Galileo Galilei. I am referencing these men because the level at which they were able to perform their craft. The amount of knowledge they possessed at the time in which they worked was astounding. Today, we might look at what have done in context of what we know about science today as insightful. But for the time period, they were a whole other level above just insightful. So in the end, we must not confuse the words smart and intellectual; bright and genius. One is knowing and understanding a certain subject matter, and the other is an all encompassing understanding of multiple genres of study.


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NEWBO: IS THERE TIME FOR A CULTURE SHIFT

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“We carved one out before, why not again?”


In the 1610’s, the African American population was forced to the United States as indentured servants. Later becoming slaves, losing names, religions, birth place of origin, and overall identification. Once freed in 1865, we went from slave labor to still no so full citizens. And with limited citizenship, and no real ethnic identity, we began to carve out a face for our community. And a lot of the culture that has made up the African American community is in the music and food. But what if we decided to take it a little further. Let’s say we made a full conversion from where we are now. I named the title NEWBO, which in today’s society stands for the New Black Overclass.

When you hear the words New Black Overclass, you think of wealth and abundant resources. And how did that manage to take hold? There are many different factors that have influenced that over the years. From young Black children growing up watching the Cosby Show to the electing of America’s first Black president. We have taken what was a bad situation in the past and made the most of it today. Yet there are still so many of us that are still below the poverty level. And not only the poverty level, we make up a disproportionately higher percentage of crime in our community relative to anyone else. So with that said, we are doing better than the past in the area of success, yet lagging behind in other major areas.

And as much as I love Black culture, there is an aspect of our culture that have taken hold in recent history that has cast a dark shadow over the community. And that has to do with the crime in the community. Because of the introduction of Heroine, Cocaine, and Crack Cocaine, from the 1970’s in the 1990’s, the face of the community has changed to much. And it has become so impactful, it is rapidly becoming our culture. Yet when you look at the overall history of Black people in America, this recent violent culture is new to us. So, how about we begin to design a cultural identifier that is us. And when I say identifier I mean clothes we wear, food we eat, music, and behavioral traits.

Having an identifier shows not only togetherness, but it creates a sense of identity outside another group. Our problem as Black people is that we are too concerned and defined by another group. And for the longest, it has been the predominantly White community. So our vision for what success looks like has always been someone in position who is White. Yet when met with resistance by anyone White it boils over quicker than anyone else. Which never happens to any other group because they create their own identity. So what another really has to say becomes irrelevant because they have defined themselves for so long feelings are trivial. But if you have no name, to language, no religion, and you adopt ones culture that’s not yours, yet someone else’s, it could become a problem if not accepted into the culture.

And in the end, that’s a real problem with why there need to be a cultural identifier. Number one, you eliminate the care for what any other group thinks about you; their views are not relevant to who you are in scoiety. Number two, you begin to take pride in something that not only you created, but you’re accepted within. Which brings me to number three, the need to fit into a group. And I think this is why we as Black people cling to Hip Hop music so much. When you create something versus forced to adopt something the sentiment is different. Christianity was never a choice, names given weren’t a choice, and language wasn’t a choice. But the music we create was a pure choice. Though not liked by many, it goes on deaf ears when pushed against because the one major thing we created that we are fully included within. And if we created something impactful and global as Hip Hop, we can create a new identity of acceptance and not tolerance.


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SEEKING VALIDATION: THE IMPORTANCE OF SELF-RESPECT

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“You don’t need, you just want to fit in so bad.”


Throughout my life, I never understood the need people have to fit in. And I don’t mean fitting into a society as a human. I mean fitting into these peer groups so that we don’t feel like we’re being left out. We would rather belong to a group that dictates how we live than to be free and be alone. Because who wants to live this life alone. But there is a far cry between being alone and lonely. Celebrities have people all around them and at times they are lonelier than those with no one around. So why do people feel like they need to fit it rather than treating it as a want.

It starts when we are young in school. The children ostracize you from the group if you are awkward. And what is defined as awkward is the kid that does not do what all the other kids are doing. So if you are a kid that walks to the beat of your own drum, you’re a loser. You’re a lame for not wanting to fit into the construct. The kids talk about you and laugh like you’re one of the weird kids. But this does not stop at childhood. It continues on into your teenage years and into adulthood. So we as adults say school bullying is wrong and then bullying takes on a new form once you become adults. People start to play with your head on a more business level. But we still have not gotten to the depths of why it matters to be validated so much.

And the reason being is that we as humans yearn for some form of companionship. And at times we are willing to subjugate ourselves to torment for that companionship. Because we all have these self-conscious feelings internally that we don’t want exposed to the world. This feeling that if we are exposed then no one will want to ever be around us. Yet if we all have it, no one can talk about anyone else. Then again, internal shame keeps us in check and adhering to each other. Maybe at a young age I was a different type of kid. Then again I am a different type of adult. And as an adult people respect you for who you are, not what you’re trying to be.

See, in the end, validation is proof that you are who you think you are; but only by way of how others see you. So you’re the greatest when people love you, and not so great when they reject you. Your identity should be your identity, not someone’s else’s vision. And what’s even more interesting, people, who are heads of these peer groups do as they wish. The more popular person sets the tone for everyone else. Which is a reality that we see throughout life. The head says something, and even if we disagree, we agree for the sake of fitting into the group.


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AGE OF DEPRESSION: HOW THE MORE WE UNDERSTAND SELF THE MORE UNHAPPY WE BECOME

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“In an era of technology, we are more connected, yet very much detached.”


In a world where we are more connected than anytime before, you would think it would make us happier. Yet it has not only made us happier, but the more we learn and understand ourselves the more depressed we become. And I don’t mean know ourselves like knowing me as an adult. I mean knowing us is it pertains to our existence on Earth. You would think with the advent of technological innovation and scientific breakthroughs, we would have a much higher level of enlightenment that would make us happy. But what that heightened awareness has done is give us the complete opposite effect. But should we digress because of this unintended effect?

View of Tourist Resort Well, let’s first look at what makes us depressed in today’s society. There are many different reasons why people tend to be unhappy. For starters, you are able to see up close your reality. And what I mean by your reality, you can see where you stand financially, socially, academically in the world. For example, you can Google image luxury, and see a world that is beyond your world just by typing it into a search engine. When my mother was young, an opulent life existed, yet you didn’t quite know about it. Clear Wine Glasses in a RowPeople were either born into wealth, or it was something you stumbled upon. Not today, today, you can actually see how little you have relative to someone else. And what’s crazy, you might have a socioeconomic position that is supporting you and your family. Yet you can’t enjoy because you are comparing yourself to someone way above you.

Why do we do it? Why do we look to someone that is far beyond us? Well, at times, that person is our age. No matter your age today, there is someone that age doing something on a more monumental scale than yourself. When I was in college, I was broke coming out, yet guys my age were signing multi-million dollar contracts to play sports. Comparing yourself to them and not appreciating what you have, even when what you have is adequate to live, robs you of gratification Image result for comparison peopleand the ability to live a fulfilling life. Meaning, you might want to make $50,000 in a year, but someone tells you, you should want better. Now you can’t enjoy what life you could have had with what you wanted because you’re chasing something you may not even want just to satisfy other people’s perspective. And with our lives being inundated with so much imagery, we still have another aspect of our lives that make us unhappy: our own existence.

Coping with our existence is tough for so many. And I don’t mean existence in the context of waking and going to work everyday, coming home, and sleeping. I mean the fact that we are here, on Earth, living and breathing. The fact that I was not born a lion, tiger, bird, or a house cat, but a human is hard for many to cope with in life. The simple existence that is me, a carbon based life form that has Related imagetaken forever to evolve into what I am, is hard to accept. And a lot of it comes from increased scientific understanding of ourselves. Here is where religion may have aided us in living on this planet. With the idea that there is something greater once we die, it gives us hope. As time progress in society, more and more people are becoming awoken to our existence. So awake, we are unmotivated to do anything. So now we become depressed with the idea that this is all that is here for us.

You would think that feeling this way would give people a sense of urgency, yet it’s having the inverse effects. The closer we come to figuring out why we are on Earth, the more we become detached from living. Maybe not knowing, is what’s best at times. Because in the end, unlike any other species where nature dictates how they behave, we are given conscious. We are given the ability to say yes or say no. We are endowed with the ability to make sound decisions. And that very conscious that gives us that ability also makes us aware of our situations in life. Some people make the best out of it, and others can never cope. And for those that can’t cope, it leads to further depression; leading to substance abuse or even suicide.

“He who increases knowledge, increases sorrow on the land.”

                          -Ecclesiastes 1:18


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CELEBRATED NOT TOLERATED: WHY BE SOMEWHERE YOU’RE NOT WANTED

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“I wouldn’t want to belong, unless I belong.”


I was recently reading a story regarding Hollywood actress Gabrielle Sidibe’s visit to the high-end Chanel retail store. While in the store, Sidibe said that she experienced racial discrimination while seeking to purchase a few items. And it wasn’t until the other Black employees in the store saw who she was, that the tone of the store clerk changed. She then began to act in a much nicer manner. But my question is why didn’t she leave the store? Why would you want to shop at a store if you feel they are discriminating against you based on race? Well, I have a few theories on some of those reasons.

One of the views I have on people who patronize places where they are not celebrated, but tolerated is because a self-respect issue. Your self-respect comes into question when you are willing to belong to a place or spend your money in a location where you are not accepted. Purchasing items in this business actually reinforces a feeling of your lack of self. But more so, the individuals treating you in this manner know that you are willing and able to deal with it. A way to show people is to not patronize, not to add to their growing business. Your actions speak louder than what is being said out of your mouth. So you can’t demand respect and go to people where you are disrespected.

But to me, this is a bigger problem than just racial concerns in America. We as a collective love being apart of something that is perceived to be this great thing. And would love to put emphasis on the word, perceived. Perception is a big reason why we seek to be a member of a group that doesn’t accept us. You see it in school where the kid is ostracized from the group. But instead of hanging around kids who want to be your friend, we want to hang with the kids who don’t like us. It’s because the ostracized at times tend to be the people who ostracize others themselves. Now we want the respect that we are not willing to extend to other people. Yet there is still another theory I have on wanting to belong to something that rejects you.

And that reason is lack of self-actualization; not realizing your true wealth. You have very financially wealthy people who command more money than the businesses they frequent. Yet they act like the business is doing them a favor. It comes from not knowing your true value and what your money can do for you. If you really did know what your money does for you, you don’t go back to the business. You think if Bill Gates walked into a store and they mistreated him, he would make a fuss. He most likely wouldn’t return because he knows the true value of his dollar. He has shown this through the various initiatives he has been apart of globally. My money growing a civilization is more important than buying trinkets. So when he does walk into a store, it’s festive because he doesn’t need you. You’re not doing him a favor, he’ knows he’s helping you.

In the end, you will always have people who want to belong to something. And like I said before, it has to do a lot with perception. We perceive something to be great and yet it really is not. But we hold things up in society to be special that are not. Food, water, air, shelter are important, not tote bags and cars. But that is the power of perception in our society.


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YOUR PLIGHT IS EVERYONE’S PLIGHT: HOW TO OVERCOME HARDSHIP IN A SOCIETY WITH ITS OWN ISSUES

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“I can’t make time for yours, when I have my own.”


Too often, we hear people say, that they have it hard in life because of some extenuating circumstance. They want people to be sensitive to their plight in life. But here is a short answer to how people feel regarding your plight in life, “No one cares.” And when I say that, it really isn’t in a way as to come off as condescending on someone else. It’s just that in life, everyone has something that they are trying to overcome. Your situation is not indicative of you, and the world doesn’t revolve around you. You might be going through something tragic in your life; but we all do.

So why do people feel it is society’s duty to correct something in their lives that happen to so many people everyday. One of the reasons is that it is harder to come out of the rut you’re in. You have been so down on yourself, that how do begin to get out of the rut. It’s like being trapped in a ten foot hole with no supplies to get out. Even if you try to jump as high as you possibly can the highest you can reach is eight of ten needed to get out the hole. So you tell people, be more sensitive to my situation. Fine, and you know what, if you were stuck in hole, people are more than willing to pull you out. But if all these people are around you stuck in holes, then you are lost in the struggle. So you have to find some type of way to get out.

Tough when you don’t have a discernible skill to dig yourself out. And here is another reason people cannot overcome their plight; no skills in life. If you are in the know or even willing to put yourself in the know of what you want, you can elevate yourself. It’s hard for people to see that who are suffering because they only see their current situation. And putting yourself in the know is difficult, but not impossible. Let’s say you want to be a doctor, but grew up in impoverished environments. What do you possibly know about becoming a physician, must less actually being a doctor. Well, you know that Google we use to look up all sorts of debauchery. It’s that same Google we can use to seek out information. Look up countless bits and pieces, and somewhere within the multitude of info is that truth. Me, I wanted to write screenplays, so I clicked how to write a screenplay. And for the past seven years I have wrote and researched how to get better at writing them.

So putting yourself in the know is another aspects of getting yourself out of situations you’re not happy with. Well what about ethnic, religious, or gender disparities that block you in life. And you know what, they exist and will always. But it’s like that old saying, “If someone made it that looks like you, it’s possible.” It’s not guaranteed, but possible. And in the end, that is the biggest issue in society. Everyone want a guarantee and nothing in life is guaranteed. You might work your whole life and never make it. So it’s really not the plight that’s the main concern. It’s putting your all into something and it going nowhere. That’s a reality, but those who are resilient reap rewards. Failure does not determine your outcome, but your willingness to persevere through adversity.  It’s like Denzel Washington stated in a speech, “Ease is a greater threat to progress in life than hardship.” “So keep striving keep pushing, and see you at work.”



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MAKING YOUR OWN LUCK: HOW TO OPEN YOUR OWN DOORS TO SUCCESS

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“Don’t wait for someone else, you make you.”


So many people in the United States have a hard time securing themselves a spot in our economy. They live their daily lives not doing what it is they want to do. Working dead end jobs and working just to have enough money to exist. Then there are the people who step out into society and make things happen for themselves. And the question now stands, “What separates the people who stepped out versus the others? Was it some form of talent that the other didn’t possess, was it the opportunities, or was it the willingness to not give in and give up. The answer is all of the above. But more so, you have to be willing to make your own luck.

What does that mean to make your own luck? Especially in a society where we have become so dependent on one way of succeeding in America, now that focus has shifted. And if you can’t shift with the focus you get left behind. The factories where automobiles were manufactured is a prime example of the focus shifting and to a more automation driven workplace. People were so used to a daily task that when the task changed to a more informational base/engineering base, people have a hard time shifting. Others see this as how societies have always shifted. So they just roll with the punches. But what I just said is still not enough information to make your own luck.

Let’s say you have a skill in teaching. You know that finding a good teaching job is tough. There are so many internet web portals where teachers are making an extra income working for themselves. They are building their resumes this way until something comes along. Tutoring multiple students counts as work history. It will show not only can you command a student’s attention, but your initiative to put yourself out there proves you could make a good educator. Or, let’s say you want to get into the medical field at a great hospital. But getting a job at this hospital is so tough. Try to work at a small clinic and build credibility with a community. Or try working overseas at a clinic in a poor village. You are not making much money, but you will learn to appreciate patients and medicine outside the monetary until you can get to that point.

All of this is hard because people say things  like, “You have better opportunities because you grew up with money.” “I was born to a certain economic situation.” “I am a minority and no one will hire me.” Fine, let’s say I am empathetic to your plight, now what. What is expected next? And that’s just it, what next. You grew up poor, minority, and poor education system. But there has to be a what are you looking for in this momentary position. Meaning, I grew up poor, I am an adult now. What do you expect someone to do for you today? For instance, I grew up the first 18 years broke, I am 30 years old now. Now I have nothing to show, but it was because I grew up poor. Ok, today is Friday, what are you hoping to expect Monday morning. Most people will say a job.

Ok, we are getting somewhere, a job. Then I ask what can you do, what do you do, and what have you done lately. This is when you hear crickets. Because people say it’s hard to get a job when you need work experience to get a job. So with that said how do I make my own luck. Well for starters, work experience is not necessarily a paid employment position. And a job is an ambiguous term, what position and title. Like my previous post, I spoke about self awareness being needed to make your own luck. If you are aware of self, you know the job title, income range, time on average to attain what it is you want. With that said, you can make something out of what seems like nothing. But when you have no awareness of what you’re good at, what are you good for. “I want a job,” you say; then I say, “What are your skills?” Nothing formulates after that with some people.

In the end, making your own luck comes from self awareness, willingness to not give in, accepting failure, and willing to start from somewhere. People only look at the finished outcome and judge based on that alone. There is some regular man or woman walking the street now, and we see them as normal. Once they hit a stride in their careers, we go, how. What you should do is ask people on their path to something, then once you see the finished product you can understand how they got there. But as long as you go you’re successful, it’s this, you miss all that in between work when no one knew who they were. It was the in between work of failures, living broke, consistency that landed them on their success path. Because experience is a broad term, yet that is what they were gaining, experience. They didn’t have dollars, but they had experience over you.


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