It Is Okay And Natural To Part Paths With Friends In A Time Such As This

Not everyone wants what you want as badly as you do.

Not everyone will walk through life alongside you on your entire walk through life. About this, there is no need to be sentimental or pained or vengeful. It is okay to triage a relationship, especially in such dire times, and to focus on that which most reflects your values.

Many of us have lived for many years in an era of great temporal luxury and comfort, in which time was seen as cheap and leisure seen as the goal of life.

We even have a wide array of society who have ceased to provide any economic value and are promised a life of leisure after only 20, 30, or 40 years of work, is this preposterous notion we call “retirement” and that this era deems an ideal owed to everyone eventually in life: a virtually sociopathic disconnect from providing worth to those around you.

Society has never promised such a decadent and debilitating thing as a 40-, 50-, or 60-year period of leisure to the general public. Such toxicity is tied to the idea that if you “sacrifice,” by doing work that you are not called to do, and you put up with it for long enough, you will never have to be a net contributor to anything in any way again. This concept of retirement is a sign of the temporal luxury in which we lived.

Human time, time measured in seconds, time in which not a moment more than this one is promised to us, is cheapened by modernity’s promise that a “sacrifice” of several decades will allow one a disconnect from all around them. This is no sacrifice. It is lying to oneself and avoiding the hard questions in life in exchange for a retirement of leisure.

The six or eight hours of screen time dedicated to entertainment is another example of the temporal luxury of this era in which we have lived. Your moments matter so little that you can luxuriously spend that amount of time in mind-numbing, spirit-assaulting entertainment.

Through recipes for living life — recipes like these and others — you can find husband and wife, parent and child cohabitating together who have hardly ever looked each other in the eye and had a real conversation about things that matter. Rather than daily having such conversations, making life all about that which matters, the conversations about which matter are so infrequent as to be memorable events, sometimes even dramatic events as if they were filmed on a Hollywood film stage.

Can you see how twisted that is, that meaningful conversations with those closest to you are so infrequent as to be memorable?

That is no life.

That is the decadence of the lie of temporal luxury becoming ingrained in one’s existence and sucking the things of life out of each individual life. So many more examples of temporal luxury exist.

Of course the bad decisions to acquiesce to the decadent temporal luxury were your own, but that luxury so surrounds us and is wrongly considered so natural that it becomes a life of many bad decisions made almost habitually and without thought or resistance on your part. This can be how we approach that which we are raised into. When it is society-wide and so seldom questioned, it can be hard to recognize and escape. But that kind of life is not natural.

Natural is growing up immersed in reality from a young age, seeing an animal die at some prepubescent age, and realizing that you too will die and that the physical experience of your spiritual being, will one day come to an end. Many, many writers describe that experience at a young age if allowed to live in such reality. Some people realize this at a young age.

That is natural.

If one is inundated with enough Disney, and any of the so many other toxic influences intended to separate you from reality, one may never come to that realization. The lies of modernity may be with you all the way to your deathbed — a time when is becomes very hard for anyone to deny the realization that there is in fact no temporal luxury, a time as well when it becomes very hard to deny the existence of a creator.

Growing up in the midst of that and being taught how normal it all is, hardly can anyone blame you when you reach a moment of crisis, and you are surrounded by people, beliefs, and behaviors that have no use to a person seeking the truth. You are merely cohabitating, you are merely occupying similar geography, and sharing similar hobbies together.

That is the way of the world.

Do not be flummoxed when your walk with a friend has reached its useful end on your journey. If reconvergence ever comes, bygone times shared together may make the reconverging of your paths all the more joyous.

To some, it is an easy thing to move a mountain, but an impossible thing to change their own life. Life changes by putting complete focus on this moment and your next decision.

This fundamental aspect of living a moral life: asking “How can I be better?” is often glossed over. Focusing on the role they play in their own lives can be very difficult for some.

There’s hardly anything else that deserves your focus, than to make you the best you.

How many people I know who provide consulting services to others on how to be. How many I know who draft government policy on how people can be forced into improving their own lives. How many I know who spend their days at work trying to “help” others in a variety of so-called “helping professions.”

Yet sitting at home is an unmade bed.

Their whole life may even be a proverbial unmade bed. Their attempts to help others can so easily be a distraction from the one who they really need to be helping: themself.

That’s the hard work in life.

And not everyone wants what you want as badly as you do. That’s a reality that must be accepted by those who will triage out the distraction and focus in on the blessings that were meant for you, if you’ll simply reach out and grab them.

Those who don’t want what you want as badly as you do may no longer want to be near you. That’s okay. Others will need to more clearly be separated from your life. That’s okay too.

Search those who want what you want as badly as you do. A motley crew they promise to be, but a crew true to core values, birthed into this place for a time such as this, brought together by the pressures of a time such as this.

Suddenly, the things that may have once divided you from people like this become so superficial. You want to know what is at their core. You want to set aside the temporal luxury. You want to walk together toward that which is the most pure indication of your shared values.

Moments like that which we live in, have an ability to melt away that which is frivolous, to focus the mind on that which is needed.

Life suddenly turns so very spartan and dedicated to that which is mission critical. I don’t mean spartan as it is often used by a frivolous people: lacking in luxury, austere, bleak, joyless, stark, bare, grim.

Such synonyms are synonyms that could only come from a well-fed and inexperienced court lexicographer and the decadent culture that provides the resources to support such a role. Decadent is a word left to us by those who were not court lexicographers, by those who do not uphold the status quo. The word decadence is a word of caution from the past. In its very etymology, it carries a warning.

Decadence is that which decays.

Ethical decay, moral decay, cultural decay, personal decay. Yes, decadence is that which decays. So, no, I do not mean the word spartan to mean lacking in luxury, austere, bleak, joyless, stark, bare, grim. I mean the word Spartan as it is used by those who have lived through such times as these: focussed.

That’s what spartan means — focussed on what matters.

I don’t care for your Netflix. I don’t care for your soap opera politics. I don’t care for what you call news. I don’t care for your policies formed by a soul sucking committee of cowards.

I care about walking through this moment as obedient to my values as I can be. All else is frivolous. To think otherwise is to miss the importance of this tiny window of opportunity we have to correct the error of this moment we live in.

You are surrounded by serpents who mean to undo you and everything you hold dear. In the midst of that, yes, my life is spartan. It is focussed.

I will not focus on the stuffed animal when a serpent means to enter my home. I will not focus on the pablum of a movie when a serpent means to whisper into my wife’s ear. I will not focus on the noise of life that distracts from the signal that needs my attention.  Focus. Focus. Focus. Get your mind off of the frivolous.

Triage it out. Excise the decadent. Does that mean to excise luxury? No. Excise the luxury that decays and distracts. Enable the luxury that empowers, that draws you closer to those values.

That which draws you closer to those values with even greater focus is not decadent at all, but its very opposite. That which is spartan is that which is focussed.

There is much that needs fixing at a moment in which decadence brings about its inevitable end product — decay — and everything all at once seems to suddenly fall apart “overnight.” Everywhere is enticing distraction that can be so fulfilling to engage, yet so meaningless to bring into reality.

Get yourself right. Every single time, every single moment. How initially unfulfilling that hard work of getting yourself right can feel. That lack of fulfillment can last some time, especially when it takes place in a sea of other distractions that can feel so immediately fulfilling, a sea of distractions that seem to “need” your “help.” But that lack of fulfillment doesn’t last forever. That steep curve begins to make a lot more sense. With momentum, you suddenly begin to wonder what took you so long to focus your attention on yourself and your moral betterment, rather than taking note of everyone else and pointing fingers.

Ignore the hyenas — they have existed in every era. The Gateses, the Faucis, those who want you to let them do harm. They want to morally compromise you, so you don’t question. They want to demoralize you, so you don’t question.  They want to confuse you, so you don’t question.  They want to distract you, so you don’t question. They want to engage you in frivolity, so you don’t question.

And if you don’t question, then you cannot act rightly. They don’t even need to worry about your action as long as they can prevent you from even questioning. Prevent a man from asking the right questions, and you have enfeebled almost everything he does. His very existence, his every ability in the world then comes down to mere chance. Dare I even say, his very existence in the world comes down to the often used term “luck,” which says “that which is of Lucifer.”

You are more than chance, but that starts with the right questions.

The hyenas don’t deserve your attention. Virtually any moment spent obsessing over them is time spent distracted from what matters. Nor do the great mass of people deserve your attention, the ones we call the sheep.

Ignore the sheep — they have existed in every era. They are the overwhelming mass of people. They do not determine the trajectory of history any more than the hyenas do. They will not be swayed by your promises that you will be a better leader than a hyena or your lectures about how stupid they are or how sheeplike and predictable they behave.

Such appeals prove you unfit to be a leader. What they will be swayed by is how you walk through life. The sheep are not the problem. The hyenas are not the problem.

The lions are the problem. 

I must focus on this lion writing this right now, and you must focus on the lion reading this right now.

Lions have shaped all human history. They shape it by slumbering through tough times or standing firm, awake, on the prowl, assuring that their land never knows truly tough times. The hyenas and sheep fall in line when a lion comes into his own. The steel-spined mighty man, the virtuous and focussed woman, they render the hyenas impotent and the sheep an afterthought.

If you are flummoxed by what others are doing, it is time to stop. Focus on the right place: focus on you. Focus on how you can be as morally upright as possible. All that needs to be done to enfeeble you and let the hyenas win the day is for you to be distracted from your single-minded focus on you living as morally upright as possible in your own life.

That’s all they need to do to enfeeble you. Focus back on that, and you have done everything you need to do to fill your life with a potency unimaginable by some, perhaps even heretofore unimaginable by you.

Focus on that, and all else follows. Focus on serving those values. Focus on serving the truth. Focus on you.

Make you as diligent and upright as you can, and all else comes into place.

I will not focus on the noise of life when there is so much meaty signal that so edifies me and so powerfully blasts truth into my face, unable to be ignored. With such a truth-filled gift ready for you — if you will just accept it — why would you choose to spend even a moment with the noise of life?

Get yourself right. Some people find it an easy thing to move mountains, yet a hard thing to change themselves. If you are not focussed on getting yourself right. You have no chance of knowing which mountain is the right mountain to move. Your behavior is full of busyness, but for what?

For the sake of activity?

For nought. It’s for nought your busy-ness.

To change oneself is one of the least taxing things you can do. It requires the convincing of no man but you. It requires the input of no man but you. It requires the help of no man but you.

Yet, it can be psychologically so very hard to stop focusing so critically on the outside world and to focus critically on oneself. Are they exclusive? Of course not. Focus critically on yourself and the outside world around you seems to improve so effortlessly. Focus critically on the outside world though, and the same is not true about how effortlessly you change.

Critically does not mean to do that which destroys you. Critically means to draw your attention to your shortcomings, to repent, and to correct with a mind for greater excellence. To focus critically on oneself is to focus on that which edifies you: the lifelong commitment to self-examination, repentance, and change.

The outside world is distraction. Until you get yourself right, the outside world deserves so little of your attention. After you get yourself right, the outside world needs so little of your attention. Get yourself right, and you will move mountains with the flick of a wrist. The power that comes from getting yourself right is something special.

The power of relying on your aimless wanderings to muscle yourself through the world is a very different matter. You’ll never get to where you were intended, mired in that distraction. The two are night and day, though the outside world may not at all be able to tell the difference. Once you get yourself right, and you focus on getting yourself more excellent, that difference unnoticeable to the outside world, becomes a great divide to you, that you never want to again find yourself on the wrong side of. Every time you get on the wrong side of it, you get a reminder about how hard life used to be when you were so obsessively focussed on what everyone else was doing, rather than focusing on the only person you are able to change.

How good it feels to draw attention off of that which is futile and toward that which is effective, so effective that hard, hard work so often seems to leave you energized.

That effective.

No, there’s no reason to fret about parting company with those who you have walked, even your whole life, alongside. Different may be needed of you at a time such as this. Triage may be needed of you.

Draw a line between you and the mask. The bestselling book “Face Masks in One Lesson exists to help you do that, as do these pieces, and the email newsletter at full of quick, easy to watch videos on how to make that and other bold steps a reality in your own life.