Boston selfie, 2018

My Simple Joys in Life

Boston selfie, 2018

Here are some of the simple joys in my life:

  1. The joy of walking: I find great joy in walking. I treat walking like moving meditation — I love letting my mind wander. Some of my best ideas come to me when I am walking. When I walk, I enter a ‘zen zone’, and I don’t worry or stress about anything in life.
  2. The joy of deep conversation with friends and family: There is no greater joy than the gift of human warmth, friendship, and having other humans in our life. I am convinced: to be human is to enjoy the company and the love of other humans. I am happiest when I am sharing in deep conversations with friends, family, and Cindy in life. I love the art of conversation — of sharing ideas, building upon ideas, the active art of listening, offering suggestions, and experiencing the company of others. I love laughing with others, expressing empathy, as well as sharing the same air and space with others.
  3. The joy of music: I get deep and profound joy from music. Music that makes me smile, dance, and move my body. Music transports me, and helps my spirit soar.
  4. The joy of reading: It still blows my mind with Google, the internet, and Google Translate — I have access to all the wisdom and knowledge of human history. For example, I’m currently reading “On Money” by Galiani, which was published in the 1700’s in Italian — and now I can easily translate the whole thing into English, and consume great ideas on economic theory from 300+ years ago. I love inspiring myself with new ideas which challenge my thoughts and world-view, and also having the opportunity to remix ideas to create some of my own unique ideas.
  5. The joy of making stuff: The joy of writing, the joy of making photos, the joy of sketching, the joy of making music, or making anything. I feel the greatest joy when I am active– actively creating and making stuff, rather than passive consumption. This is why I believe that true joy and happiness comes in life from CREATING stuff, not just buying stuff. This is my anti-consumerist mindset: I am pro-producerism.

friends eating dinner, chinese food, boston, 2018

“Joy” vs “happiness”

Blue building. Boston, 2018

I prefer the word “joy” over “happiness”. To me, joy is an active and positive feeling that is simple and easy to obtain. The notion of “happiness” is too abstract to me.

I feel to live a more fulfilling life is to:

  1. Engage in more activities that bring joy to your life.
  2. Make sure that your joys are ACTIVE (not passive), and partaking in joys which are actually obtainable.

Never stop growing and moving

boston skyline. 2018

Don’t stand still. Keep pushing yourself to learn more, to keep challenging your own thoughts, and create your own culture. Challenge what you’ve been taught, be skeptical, and keep synthesizing ideas that empower you — and share these ideas with others.

boston trees, urban landscape, trees, 2018

As of right now, my purpose in life is to ingest ideas, challenge these ideas, analyze these ideas, and simplify these ideas into practical directives which can empower others. And of course, all my ideas are specific to myself — and while I know my ideas won’t help everyone, as long as my ideas help some people — this pursuit in my life is worthwhile.

Simple ideas

man, light, blur, boston, 2018, street photography

If you’re reading this, and feeling a bit of existential dread in life, or just feeling bored — some simple ideas/suggestions:

  1. With your daily activities, do ACTIVE things which bring you joy (avoid passive joy/pleasures).
  2. Realize that it is your imperative to share ideas, share art, or share anything that can empower others. For example, if your artwork, music, writing, or video can empower 1 other human being, it is worth publishing and sharing.
  3. Walk more: When in doubt, get out of the house, and walk more. Be like a ‘flaneur’ — walk with no destination in mind. Bring along your camera, snap a few photos. Or just walk, and let your mind wander. Walk for the sake of walking (not for ‘exercise’) — and realize that walking is very important for your mental health. My theory is that the reason we feel more depressive during the winter months (or living in the suburbs) is that we don’t move/walk around much.

minimalist urban landscape 2018, boston

As a conclusion to this letter, remember the wise words of the philosopher-poet Publilius Syrus:

“The rolling stone gathers no moss.”

BE BOLD, BRAZEN, and never stop moving.

selfie refrigerator, turtle, 2018, boston


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