"The Spotlight" // Photograph of Cindy in Downtown LA, 2009. Canon 5D, 35mm

"The Spotlight" // Photograph of Cindy in Downtown LA, 2009. Canon 5D, 35mm

Dear friend,

I love life a lot. Personally, I want to live life to the fullest, and share that joy with you.

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Why?

Cindy yellow portrait temple

Here are some of my thoughts:

  1. Memento mori: Whether we like it or not, we will die. At best we might live to be around 90-100 years old. At worst, we might die tonight in our sleep. Our time and life is the ultimate non-renewable resource. So why waste even a single moment doing shit we don’t want to do, and why not live life to the fullest?
  2. Living life to the fullest: What does it even mean to “live life to the fullest?” My thoughts: I think living life to the fullest is essentially going to sleep every night with zero regrets. Living everyday to the fullest by experimenting anything you’re interested in, creating whatever you desire, and publishing/sharing whatever you create. A practical example of living everyday to the fullest is taking photos everyday, making videos everyday of what you’re passionate about, writing and sharing ideas you’re passionate about. Experimenting with new technologies (like augmented reality/virtual reality), and pursuing any creative project you’re interested in. This also means investing all of your time and money in yourself: this means that you don’t need anyone else’s permission to attempt to do what you desire to do!
  3. Dictating your own purpose/direction in life: I don’t think there is any “right” or “wrong” way to live. We must all as individuals dictate how we desire to live. And we must also realize whatever we decide our purpose/direction is in life— we must NOT force this philosophy upon anyone else (this is known as “tyranny” or a dictatorship). Everyone is free to live however they desire; and so can you. You live in a free world; you can decide how to earn money, you can decide how much (or how little) to work. You can decide where to live, what to do with your free time, and what you desire to devote your time/attention/energy on. This, to me, is the ultimate empowerment — realizing life is the greatest thing ever.

Why do we kill time/life?

Cindy Dutch angle composition yellow

Sometimes I get a bit depressed when I think about my fellow human beings who feel disempowered, and who don’t like being alive. I feel the reason why a lot of us are addicted to video games, drugs, alcohol, etc is because we don’t like the pain of being alive. We distract ourselves from the “despair of living”. A lot of us want to simply “kill time” or … “kill life.”


Blame modern society.

Cindy silhouette hand forehead

I don’t blame the individual, I blame modern media. Modern media (tv/social media/movies/economics) makes us afraid, it makes us think that the world is a horrible place to live in, and we have become nihilists (nihilism as a school of thought that there is no purpose in being alive).

I am actually a positive/optimistic nihilist. I’m a nihilist in the sense that I don’t actually think there is an ultimate “purpose” of being alive. We were born and thrust into the world by our parents. We didn’t ask our parents to be born.

Hand framing hello woman Kyoto old woman

But the truth is, we were given birth to, and we are alive. We exist right now, in reality. So the question is,

What are we going to do with our lives while we are still alive, right now? What will we do today? Is there any regrets you wish to avoid before you die? What do you wish to do/accomplish while you’re still alive?

Cindy walking down white corridor. Kyoto

For myself, I desire to empower humankind. I desire to empower people alive today, and humankind of the future. I desire to empower people to feel more happiness and gratitude in being alive, but also to inspire/motivate others to live their lives to the fullest. To encourage others to act, do stuff they desire, and achieve more. To feel more fulfillment in life as a result of achieving more in life, but also being cognizant of their accomplishments. I desire to empower my fellow humans to empower other humans; to create a positive domino effect in society.

Shadow bird. Flight. Paris, 2011

Why do I desire to empower humankind? Well, to me, I just have an extreme love of all humankind. I know that I will die, and I feel the happiest/most purposeful when I’m helping others. I don’t care too much about my personal legacy; I just desire future generations of humans to thrive.

A part of this is my personal self-assigned duty; countless mentors and guides have empowered me, and helped me get where I am today. I desire to “pay it forward”: to help the teenagers and kids of today, as well as people in their 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, maybe even in their 100s.

Dictate your own purpose in life.

Close-up of my sister Annette Kim's eye. Shot on Canon 5D and 105mm Macro Sigma Lens.

But this is my personal imperative. You can dictate whatever your purpose in life. What is your personal self-assigned duty in life, and what do you wish to achieve everyday, and what huge and audacious goal do you wish to accomplish before you die?

Memento mori: Death is the best motivator!

BE BOLD,
ERIC

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