Rethinking What Really Matters

Life is short so it is important to focus on what matters and let go of what doesn’t. The most important things in life are not our phones, TVs, new cars or big impressive houses and they can not be found at the bank. In reality the most important things in life are on a very short list. The most important things in life are our purpose, time, health and our relationships with others. You can have many material things in life and be a millionaire but nothing will fulfill you like those four things.

Purpose is our why. It was controls and fuels our actions. It causes us to be passionate about things. And it is involved in everything you do in life; work, relationships and our approach to living our lifes. It means living your life in an intentional way and it gives you extra meaning and a deeper sense of self.

Next is time. Everyone has the same amount of time in their day; twenty-four hours. But some people run around stressed complaining that they do not have enough time while others approach life in a relaxed state but still seem to get just as much done. Many people make poor choices when it comes to time management on a daily basis. Each time you say yes to doing something for someone else, you are saying no to doing somthing for yourself. Time is a fleeting resource, once it is spent you cannot get it back so it is very important to be selective with the time you have. This is difficult if you are spending your entire day doing school work for different classes or working multiple jobs. What you can do is find small pockets of time to invest in passions, projects and self care. Though your job may be to care for someone else, it is so necessary to care for yourself along the way.

Third is health. Many people take their health for granted until they have a reason not to. Many neglect to exercise and then find themselves wonderingwhy the struggle to climb up a flight of stairs. It is important to take care of one of the most important things in your life because anything could happen at any moment and take it away.

Lastly, in my opinion the most important aspect of life is your relationships. Many people lead very busy lives which causes them to think they don’thave enough time for relationships. However, that busyness is created by yourself. That means it is important to step away from it and focus on the relationships you are neglecting. Your friends, family and loved ones are what add meaning to your life. You MUST make time for these relationships. Being busy is fine if your busy with the most essential things in your life like your relationships.

Purpose, time, health and loved ones. These are the things that make life more complete so it is important to treat them accordinly

When The Emperor Was Divine and Negative Binaries

In Julie Otsuka’s heartwrenching story When the Emperor was Divine, she compiles five stories from the persepctives of five different members of a family. The novel tells the tales of a Japanese American family living in Berkely, California before World War II, their experience of being sent away to the internment camps during the war and what it was like coming home when the war was over. The stories she told were loosely based on events that happened to her own family. The experience Otsuka elaborates on while narrating the stories connect greatly to Freud’s theory of otherness and that one can only recognize themselves when they realize their differences from another person. Freud’s theory coinsides with how the Japanese Americans were treated during the war. Japanese Americans were isolated from the rest of the country and treated as prisoners and slaves because of their differences from Americans. Additionally, in the novel Otsuka furthers the U.S’s use of philosophical theories when explaining why the Japanese were put in interment camps from the forefront of America’s involvemnt of the war. The U.S loosely went along the guidelines of Benjamin’s theory of mutal recognition as well. Government officals as well as citizens of the U.S recognized the physical similarities between Japanese Americans and people living in Japan and grouped them into one whole. Giving them the ability to make the assumption that just because Japanese Americans originated from Japan they were presumed to be dangerous and spies of war. While at the same time they created the binaries of Japanese/American to give them the ability and the mindset that it was acceptable to control and oppress another group. Otsuka’s story opens the eyes to a lot of things many people are not educated enough on and it shows the importance of learning about the countries mistakes as well as triumphs.

Actions Don’t Always Define The Person

In the short story “Escape from Spiderhead” it details the experiences and decisions of a former jail inmate. In one of the pertinenet moments of the story Jeff has to choose between giving the Darkenfloxx to either Heather or Rachel, the two girls he formerly had relationships with. Before the second trial was held with Rachel, the head of Spiderhead, Abnesti, gives Jeff the details of why Rachel was also in the testing facility to make it easier for him to hurt her. She too was there because her extensive involvement of drugs and the murder of three different people. After Abnesti informed Jeff of her actions he thinks to himself, “But I still didn’t want to kill her” (75). Jeff’s thought to himself resonates to the theme that actions do not always define the person. In Jeff’s mind although Rachel had done horrible things to many people in her life, it didn’t effect Jeff’s decision to not want to hurt Rachel; because the actions of others do not always effect morals. Additionally, Jeff’s former actions also do not change his ultimate decision. Closer to the end of the story Jeff explains why he was also in the testing facility. Jeff too commited a murder and by most or all people he would be considered a bad person for killing an innocent human. However, although he too had killed someone he did not want to hurt Rachel or anyone in the facility. He knows that it is the worng thing to do and it makes him feel pain. Therefore, this section of the story relays the messege to the reader that although Jeff had done terrible things in his past it doesn’t mean that that is who he is as a person and that he would ever want to hurt someone again. It also informs the reader that someone elses bad actions doesn’t make it morally right to do wrong back to them.