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  • It doesn't matter how justified they may be in shafting you - they shafted you, of course it's going to hurt and you don't have to like it. Taleb says you are better off being wildly hated than merely disliked if that's the case, but if you're like me who longs for real love, the wisdom is knowing that your connection with them has always been tenuous, an uphill battle. If not over one thing, then another.

    Much of that process of waking up from that nightmare of psychological discontent is shifting your awareness out of tensing up with thinking and achieving, and relaxing into awareness and Being. What they call "innocence" of childhood is really just that.

    There are essentially two types of relationships - the terminology I borrow from Teal Swan.

    1. inhale - it's a compulsive attraction over the other person, where there's a build-up of tension as when you're breathing in. Yes, there is excitement and whirlwind passion..

    2. exhale - you feel them like a relief and a relaxation in your body, like coming home with family. This is the healthy and genuine form of love.

    Now, you will feel this when you focus on a person you're involved with, albeit unconsciously at first. The inhale relationships are like Romeo and Juliet: there will be idolization, admiration, perhaps even their security from a harsh world. But as you attempt to pull closer to them, it feels like you're fighting an uphill climb for their heart, tugging for their attention over their inexplicable growing reluctance. It's a trip down taking heroin along with the painful withdrawals. The end result is always doomed to failure, betrayal and tragedy in the long-run, however passionate, arousing or electrifying the dose of the person may be. In other words, you can only be truly together with them over your dead body.

    "The thing with Dickie.. it's like the sun shines on you, and it's glorious. And then he forgets you and it's very, very cold." (he's a narcissist.)

    The exhale relationships let you breathe and feel like being your actual self, without feeling the pressure of having to perform or do anything. Yes, you can end up rejecting each other if you're unconscious at first, but they help you attune to your real self when, relaxing in those silences, you realise.

    Yin-yang symbol.
    "After the rain comes sun.. after the sun comes rain again."

    Most if not all tragic characters in literature, pursuing that bliss of those rose petals, fall victim to digging those thorns deeper into their flesh, producing this paradox which embeds itself deeply in your consciousness as part of the "tragic human condition," best embodied by the Chinese yin-yang symbol. Everything which you have to think about is walking on the desecrated ground called Duality, while joy and life is what goes on after the Devil reasons everything into dirt.

    All the YouTubers who produce those "rise and fall" documentaries on others, while they're flexing their higher-than-thou intelligence as if to postulate that they are above the mistakes of others, ironically are the most hopeless when it comes to living real life. They are as Vladimir Putin, who gloats over the mistakes made by the Western civilization as a whole, masturbating over historical events and alliances as a justification for tyranny. It's like hearing the Devil himself tormenting you with saying: "Oh, if only you were more virtuous, it wouldn't be this way, but now look, you're all fallen.."