maandag 5 juli 2010

An old Indian story filled with spirituality

An old Grandfather said to his grandson, who came to him with anger at a friend who had done him an injustice, "Let me tell you a story.

I too, at times, have felt a great hate for those that have taken so much, with no sorrow for what they do.

But hate wears you down, and does not hurt your enemy. It is like taking poison and wishing your enemy would die. I have struggled with these feelings many times." He continued,
"It is as if there are two wolves inside me. One is good and does no harm. He lives in harmony with all around him, and does not take offense when no offense was intended.
He will only fight when it is right to do so, and in the right way.

But the other wolf, ah! He is full of anger. The littlest thing will set him into a fit of temper. He fights everyone, all the time, for no reason. He cannot think because his anger and hate are so great. It is helpless anger,for his anger will change nothing.

Sometimes, it is hard to live with these two wolves inside me, for both of them try to dominate my spirit."

The boy looked intently into his Grandfather's eyes and asked, "Which one wins, Grandfather?"

The Grandfather smiled and quietly said, "The one I feed."

zaterdag 22 mei 2010


It's been a while since my last blog, but as i said in the first post i wouldn't post regularly untill something came up that was important in my eyes.
So today i'd like to talk a bit about tolerance, and the lack thereof, which has been bothering me for quite some time now.

Now there is tolerance in several ways, some of them are more practical then others.
For example, here in Holland there's entire populations that aren't tolerated for no other reason then just being in our country. Obviously i'm talking about immigrants here.
But a more practical example could be found in America for example, where rival gangs contest eachother for a city block or street.
And all the while i'm thinking, what on earth for?
Why do people behave so intolerant to others? It isn't like all the problems in Holland would be solved when we deported all the immigrants back to their old country, nor does it do a person in America any good to 'own' a street through violence.
And in that last case, i really have got to wonder if that truely is the legacy of your life you want to leave behind after you pass away?

More then anything it's important to keep an open mind towards others, in their customs, beliefs, dresscode, hobbies, or whatever other thing people can be discriminated on these days.
It's such a shame that you'll miss so much of what the world has to offer, just because you insist on hating others blindly.
Some people deserve to be frowned upon, but only if their own actions deserve such a treatment.
I just can't see how you can hate a whole social group, because it's impossible they all did something wrong to you.
For example, not every immigrant here in Holland is a person who keep an agressive stance towards others while hanging around on the street, nor is every immigrant a lazy bum who doesn't want to work, yet most often the entire immigrant group is labeled as such even though 99% of them doesnt warrant such a label).

There has been certain media that has helped me open my eyes to this rising problem.
One of them is the movie Schindler's List, but other films surrounding the World War 2 Holocaust has also contributed to this.
Schindler's List however is something of a unicum however, because in my eyes it stands head and shoulders above the rest, even above such 'classics' as The Pianist.
It offers a larger view on the systematic slaughter of the Jewish race, with views inside concentration camps like Auschwitz and workcamps around Poland and the Chzech Republic.
The Holocaust is one of the clearest examples of where intolerancy can lead to: millions of Jews and other 'untermenschen' (worthless people, basically, people that are less than humans, closer to rats and other vermin)found their death in concentration camps and mass-killings because the people in power couldnt be tolerant to their way of life.
They were viewed as different and unworthy, and because of this got singled out and the blame of everything that was wrong in Germany was stuck on them.
An entire populace got infected with a blind hate toward Jews and they got deported and killed enmasse.
It didnt matter if they were kids or elderly people, your only chance of life was being able to work. And at best this only gave you a couple of months to live in an utter hell of constant tension, malnutrition, death and human misery all around.

German SS soldiers as depicted in 'Schindler's List', hellbent on killing any Jew they encounter that hid from them when the Warsaw ghetto was being cleared out.

Since the Holocaust has already happened people keep a much clearer eye on the way governments and armies behave toward other countries and it's people, but a true tolerancy has not been reached.
Lots of people still remain hateful to others for no true apparent reason, and i think it's still not impossible for something like the Holocaust to happen again.
When the world goes blind with hate once more, we will have to miss out on yet another thing that was offered to us before, and the world will grow a little more bland each time.

Remember that because of intolerancy, entire cultures have gone to waste: the American Indians, Maya's, Inca's, and the Aboriginals aren't far from being wiped from the face of the Earth either.
Now we admire their stance in life, but back then they got slaughtered as the foulest demons.
My message to all of you is this: keep an open mind, open the gate and throw away the key, because you might never know what you will have missed out on.

An entire culture wiped out because people couldnt find it in their hearts to accept their culture and way of life, trying to 'educate the ignorant Indian' (who has done so well for thousands of years before the white man arrived), or just killing them outright for their territory instead of trying to live peacefully and cooperatively.

In conclusion: We really need to stop fucking with other people's livelyhoods!

dinsdag 13 april 2010

A fan video

You must be getting sick and tired of Into the Wild by now thanks to me, but hey, i'm still not :)
I'm still listening to the music, still watching certain parts of the movie or reading a quote from the book, and i wanted to do a new video project because it's been a very long time since i've done anything in that area.
If you'd look on my Youtube account you'd see about 70 game video's, 2 sports videos of obstacle tracks, and a trailer for Into the Wild.
And now my latest addition: a fanvideo of Into the Wild. :)

Know beforehand though that i am no video editing expert, and i've spent quite a few hours gathering bits and pieces from the movie, and more to piece them back together again in a, hopefully, logical way that's fun to watch.
Let me know what you think, ok? Oh, and don't forget to give it the thumbs up if you like it ofcourse! :)

Into the Wild - A fanmovie by SiC from Anne Luchtenveld on Vimeo.

donderdag 18 maart 2010

Places I'd like to visit some day, pt.1

This is my third post and by now it should be clear to most of you that have read my blog, that I would love to trek around the world by backpack.
And while doing so, I'd love some places that speak to the adventurous spirit within me. To visit some of the world's wonders, either created by nature or man.
I want to experience the world and all it has to offer, and I fear that settling down too much, and especially on such a young age will destroy my soul...
I'd wither away with my mind 'on pause' and before I'd realise it my life would be over without ever doing anything.
I'd get more responsibilities and in time I would be no longer able to detach myself from them.

The first place I'd like to talk about is something I've seen in the move 'Into the Wild'.
Yes, I know Í must be repeating myself by now because this is the third post and the third time I mention it.
However, this one has nothing to do with the movie, but with a specific location in one of the scenes which spoke to me.
What am I talking about? Well, about Salvation Mountain :)

Salvation Mountain is a project by Leonard Knight, born in 1931, and is located in the lower desert of Southern California.
Leonard never believed in God, but one day found the faith and since then he had a dream: to make a giant air balloon that said 'God is Love'.
However, after years of trying and failing to make a balloon that would remain airborne, he had to admit defeat.
As a last statement, he painted a picture on a nearby hill.

But what once started as a picture painted on an adobe hill has turned into a giant project (by now Salvation Mountain is 150 foot wide and 50 foot high!) with just one message: God is real and he loves us all.
Now personally I don't really believe in God, but I find it inspiring to see that this man's believe is so strong that he moved into the desert and didnt make it just his hobby to work on Salvation Mountain, but his life.
He lives out of a truck he parks near Salvation Mountain, and by now quite often receives visitors that have heard about his creation.
But more importantly, Salvation Mountain speaks of dedication and love. Love for one another and love for the world, and dedication to spread that love.
Those are two virtues I hold very high, and I respect Leonard for what he has accomplished.
Some people would consider him a wacko because he doesn't have a real house, lives in the desert and dedicates his life to painting a hill. One could say he isn't making anything of his life, if you consider the society standard.
But to me, this is living.

But it is not just paint alone.
In Salvation Mountain Leonard Knight used all he could find nearby, from deer antlers to car doors, and incorporated it into his masterpiece.
It's not something you can make sense out of, but it sure does look pretty, and to me this definitely counts as one of the worlds wonders.
It's unique, and really something special.

And now for all of you to see, the master himself at Salvation Mountain:

If you want to read more, and see more, of Salvation Mountain, you can read a history and a biography here at the offical Salvation Mountain website:
Salvation Mountain website

woensdag 17 februari 2010

To continue on...

So a few days ago i started looking for quotes from the book "Into the Wild" by John Krakauer, based on Christopher McCandless's two year journey to Alaska which was part of my subject in my first blog.
Today i'd like to continue on from that blog with two quotes i found which really appealed to me, and caused me to think further about the society we currently live in.
And as usual, that leads to some thoughts which to me are influenced heavily by my 'heavy metal mentality', which i'll continue on later on in the blog.
So, on to the first quote...

"So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservatism, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more dangerous to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man's living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun."

This spoke to me, and this may sound silly, but because it reminded me of some of my experiences in videogames.
And those videogames are MMORPG's. Now, an MMORPG may sound pretty cool on paper because you get to play together with a lot of different people, where you should be able to go on adventures together.
Instead, you need to reach a specific level for most 'dungeons', places you go with just your group where nobody else but your group can go with you.
And how do you reach that level? By grinding your way through countless monsters to earn experience, so you can finally level up and try something new.
Now there comes in the quote: "The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences".
See, when you grind through those monsters it doesnt take a lot of thinking. You know exactly what you can expect and what you are supposed to do.
Your mind stagnates untill you can finally do something new again, which would be a new dungeon to explore.
It's mindnumbing work. Why would you want to do that?

And it leads me to the next thought: This holds true for other things in life as well.
You start working, you work tirelessly to reach a new goal: better pay, new house, new car, whatever.
In order to do that in modern society, you need a carreer. A carreer, in my opinion, requires a lot of work putting in to it before you get anywhere.
You work every day for years of your life, experiencing nothing new, you just keep repeating the same work day after day after day untill you have gathered enough reputation to earn yourself a promotion.
It's mindnumbing just to think about it.
I'll have to quote Chris McCandless again, as he said to Ronald Franz: "I think a carreer is a 20th century invention, and I don't want one."
And now in comes my 'metal mentality'.
Why does it have to be this way? Why can't you do it in any other way? Society forced this on us, and we have to live with it, just like taxes.
And why do i call this a 'metal mentality'?

I call it a metal mentality because no other genre of music has such a big emphasis on kicking the nuts of stuff you don't like.
This also holds true for punk music and rock and roll.
These types of music allow one to 'stick it to the Man', to those who forced this way of living on us.
Metal shakes an angry fist at the Man, and it allows you to say: "This is what you are doing to us! Have a look at it! This is what you do to us, and I don't like it! I won't stand for it, and I will fight for what i believe is right!"
You can rub it in his face untill you can force a change, to be able to live the life YOU want to, without all the crap society forces on you.
You can question everything, and shake your angry fist at it.
Taxes, carreers, 40-hour workweeks, why? Why does it have to be this way?
Why can't we escape from it and live life in a more pleasant way then grind through it to finally be able to accomplish something?
Why can't we set all that crap aside and just be happy, and live without a care in the world?

And in closing, i'd like to quote Christopher McCandless one last time because this fully expresses what i would love to do myself one day:
"Two years he walks the earth.
No phone, no pool, no pets, no cigarettes. Ultimate freedom. An extremist. An aesthetic voyager whose home is the road. Escaped from Atlanta. Thou shalt not return, 'cause "the West is the best." And now after two rambling years comes the final and greatest adventure. The climactic battle to kill the false being within and victoriously conclude the spiritual pilgrimage. Ten days and nights of freight trains and hitchhiking bring him to the Great White North. No longer to be poisoned by civilization he flees, and walks alone upon the land to become lost in the wild."
— Alexander Supertramp
May 1992

zaterdag 23 januari 2010


So this is my first post, and i'm quite new to blogging in general.
I don't really like to type huge stories regulary, so I won't post something new every day and about everyday stuff like some people do.

So, my first blog ever will be about something i believe in very much.
I believe in individualism.
Individualism, in my eyes, is something not regularly seen in society.
I could say i'm quite the weird character if you would try to put me in a social group.
I feel i don't quite fit in anywhere.
I am an alternative guy at heart, which is something weird in the social group i am in right now.
I follow a sports education, and all the 'sportsjockeys' are pretty much all the same. They love the same kind of music, they go to nightclubs and in general are very extrovert.
I'm more of an introvert person, I love metal and because of that don't go out quite as much, and that doesnt fit in with them.
Most alternative people however hate sports, so i don't quite fit in with them either.
In comparison to them i'm much more active, and if you'd see me walking around you wouldnt say i'm a metalhead per se.

The biggest problem though is in my opinion society, and it's inflexibility.
Society expects you to be a certain way, to act a certain way, and if you do not meet their expectations you are basically outcast.
You won't get the job you'd want and it'll be given to someone 'generic'.
If you are a hippie and live out in the Desert you are considered weird.
If you don't work straight out of college, you are weird too.
You are expected to slave away right from the start, untill you're around 60.
And if you are lucky, you get to see some of the world, but most people aren't that rich even after working their entire life and are 'stuck' or too 'attached' to their little world.

To be perfectly honest, i think this current society is sick.
It's not flexible enough so not all people get who they want to be.
"I have to this, and i have to be like that!" But i don't have to do or be anything!
I am who i am, and that will never change because i believe in who i am.
I believe in the individual. I love 'weird people', who stray from the norm, of society's expectations telling them who or what to be.
People look down on a man building a dome from scrap metal in the desert calling it 'the Temple of Love', but i think he lives life most of all.
He is who he is and he does what he believes in: building a testimony to the love God has for everyone. Building proof that God loves all in the world.
Meeting such a man is an honour i can only hope to receive.
I know all the rules, but the rules do not know me.

There is a man who i absolutely admire, and his name is Christopher McCandless, also known by the nickname Alexander Supertramp which he gave himself.
Chris did not believe in the modern society and decided to leave it.
After giving all his money to a good cause (around 24 thousand dollars), he decided to hike through America to reach Alaska and survive in the Wild.
While most people would consider their lifes to be over when they have no money, Christopher believed being released of all his money to be a new life.
He walked around for over 2 years, every now and then picking up a job to get some money (as much as you'd like to, you can't go completely without it if you still travel through towns because it's the only official currency accepted by most people) and in the end he arrived in untamed Alaska.
He found an abandoned bus in lived in it for months at end, calling it the 'days of the Magic Bus'.
He was out there all alone and by himself, where he could organise his thoughts on his life and his place in society.
He wasn't all genius though, while proving his point with giving away all his money and earthly possessions, he also thought a map of the area was an unacceptable luxury.
A misstake that in the end would cost him his life.

As an introvert myself, i dream his dream.
The thing i would love most is to work for a while to gather up money to travel the world, and explore it.
To experience all the world and it's wonders and hopefully meet some fantastic people like Christopher did who live their lifes outside of society.
I would hate to be stuck in place forever in a world that doesnt think like i think.
Most of all i would love to walk around and also get some quiet time for myself, away from everything and everyone, without obligations.
To live for myself before i start living for someone else, and come at terms with myself and my place in society.
To live life to it's fullest and in it's true meaning: doing what makes you happy, and not just conform to the norm of what everybody else expects you to be.
I wouldnt go completely Alexander Supertramp though, i'd afford myself at least some luxury items (where would i be today without music?) :)

I'd like to conclude this first post with a song that inspires me to take on my dreams.
It's a song written as part of a soundtrack to the movie 'Into the Wild', which is based on Christopher McCandless's diary notes.
It's an amazing journey, and after seeing it i hope more people understand the way i feel inside :)