Thoughts

Coincidence or heavenly Conspiracy?

“…and when one of them meets the other half, the actual half of himself, whether he be a lover of youth or a lover of another sort, the pair are lost in an amazement of love and friendship and intimacy and one will not be out of the other’s sight, as I may say, even for a moment…”
Plato

Have you ever met someone that managed to turn your emotional world upside down in a very short time? Made you forget all your boundaries, all your rules, all your inhibitions? Made you braver, happier, inspired your hidden depths to appear on the surface and made you freely float on them? Made you feel crazy most of the time because you were experiencing something unexplainable and surreal?

The entrance of the soulmate in one’s life… A coincidence or heavenly conspiracy? The best that can happen to a mere mortal, we could think. To have that special someone we feel a deep, natural affinity with. To have someone we feel comfort and tranquillity with; who entices our sexuality, intellect, spirituality; who guides our love and who deserves our trust. Ideal match. Ultimate happiness.

But, more often than not, these strong strings that connect us to the person we feel an intense connection with easily break. The fear caused by the power of such intimacy can be overwhelming. We might doubt our own sanity and question how such things can even happen in the real life. The sensation of a single soul inhabiting two bodies sounds very attractive in theory. Once it happens and becomes reality, brings frustration, fear of inadequacy, fear of loss, fear of not being enough, fear of own desires,… Life becomes a combat field and the soldiers are our minds and hearts. We all know that emotional exhaustion will always make a mind win. It is strange to me that we are so eager to be happy, but once the happiness happens, we do everything possible to send it away… The complexity of emotional insanity is fascinating.

Late last February someone very special entered my life. A very strange and coincidental encounter turned out to be really one of the kind. After talking for a while, the person on the other side of the “red string” remembered that we had met nine years ago. I had no recollection of him, but I believed his words because I was given the details I remembered perfectly. God’s ways were mysterious, I thought. In a very, very short time, I felt more alive than in the entire year. The person attracted me in all ways possible. It was really magical. I felt we have known each other for our entire lives. The most beautiful thing was that both of us had such freedom in communication with one another, we seemed absolutely synchronized. I could read his mind and the things he would say were the things that I couldn’t make myself say… Once, I was thinking what I was going to wear when we meet and have chosen the red skirt and some white top to go with it. When we talked he said he visualized me wearing the red skirt and the white top. My mouth dropped…

I had dreams of him which were so real and the visions I experienced made me make an appointment with my friend who is a clinical psychologist. After two sessions and regressive hypnosis (now that is a scary experience during which I remembered some things I wished I had forgotten), I got an official confirmation that I was sane and a bit “too normal” as my friend joked with me. She just told me to relax, enjoy the experience and STOP analyzing. As if I was going to listen to that advice…

It was something I couldn’t logically explain. Something that frightened me because I felt impulses that I have never felt before. I am not a kind of person who is attracted to someone easily, it takes years to allow someone to approach me, etc… But with this person, I was ready to fly to the Moon and back without asking – why.

Our paths parted but there will always be that will wonder- what if… In my heart, I knew the connection was real and one of the kind. But, my mind was telling me not to get attached and to stay cool. I can’t say I didn’t feel pain when we decided not to continue with the story, but I felt peace. I knew I wasn’t ready for another relationship at that moment because I was still feeling the pain from my failed marriage. But, I was happy to know that my heart would be able to love again if I could have given it a chance. That was very inspiring.

When you know you have someone special beside you, don’t let them go. Invest in strength and inner power and put your heart on your sleeve for them. Such bonding happens only once in a lifetime. Cherish it and embrace it, without fear. Intensity is passion, dedication, dependency,… There is nothing wrong with it. Rejecting it wouldn’t be fair to love.
I often wondered why God brought that man into my life for the second time… I couldn’t find a response. How the time is passing, I think his role in my life was to bring me back to life, to show me that there is still hope for love and happiness. However, the cynical me says it is because I wouldn’t forget him again…

Soulmates are our angels in shape of a human. I smile every time I remember mine. With the warmth in my heart, I recall and honour his words that will forever stay imprinted in my head: ” I wish we had been together nine years ago, we could have reversed lots of memories and prevented lots of pain.” 

©Tatjana Ostojic

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Thoughts

Epiphany moment provoked by an Egyptian wedding

  • Inspired by a lovely couple who got married in Egypt, early April 2017. Whoever and wherever they are, I hope they are very happy.

Early in April 2017. I was getting ready for sleep when my phone announced I have received a text message. Intuitively I felt who the sender was and I smiled when I went to pick up that smart little gadget I no longer can imagine my life without. But, I digress.

Let us call the sender of the text “a friend”. So this friend of mine attended a lavish wedding of his friends in some hot spot hotel in Egypt ( I forgot the name since hotels don’t really fascinate me ). The content of a text was – Egyptian wedding for you with a LOL smile emoji and a video of a newlywed couple dancing together.

Now, since this friend knew I personally disliked such type of weddings, he sent a text as a joke. I am that romantic girl who likes simple, intimate ceremonies, preferably on the beach, where I wouldn’t have to wear high heels and the atmosphere would be friendly and relaxed, followed by nice music. I must admit I did love the Egyptian music and the belly dancer, it is impossible not to dance when these beats are played. So, in my dream wedding on the beach, I’d keep Arabian food, belly dancers and music.

I laughed at the written words and replied with laughing back. But, when I opened the video, I started to cry. And I really cried. So much that was impossible for me to go to bed and sleep. Yes, I have cried to the two complete strangers dancing together. It was such a beautiful scene that I felt my entire heart was burning with some strange feelings. It wasn’t the feeling of envy followed by- why this isn’t happening to me? It was happiness… Pure happiness for that man and that woman who chose love to live by…

Then a thought came to my mind… What is it about love that makes us optimists? That makes us want to marry, that makes us want to invest in this sacred relationship despite the horrifying statistics, despite the negative experiences that we had or that we heard others had? I believe that is the power of love. At the time I have received that text I was a heartbroken and emotional wreck that was trying to pick herself up and go back to her old self. That text brought me back to life. I have never admitted that to my friend, but that night was the first night of my new existence.

Then I have realized that many marriages won’t last. In fact, one out of two will end with divorce at some point. But, the need to love and to be loved will always be stronger than any pain that love brings with it. Personally, I was in more pain due to love than illness. Even so, I would never ever close my heart and act like I don’t have one ever again. Yes, perhaps we need time to open to other people and to learn how to trust another person. That process, however, shouldn’t last for a long period of time.

I am a firm believer that most of our problems are the product of overthinking and refusing to scratch into that glaze we painted our hearts with. We bury ourselves in agony and discomfort, longing for the past we know wasn’t good, pitying our destiny and cursing the day we were born. Torment becomes this magical maze of mixed feelings and emotions that we can’t cope with and we are desperately going deeper into our afflicted minds. We numb and silence the hearts with medications. We become prisoners of our own thoughts. Many still die for lost, unrequited intimacy and that sweet attachment we can only feel with our partners.

It is very easy to say no to love. I claimed I would never fall in love again, that I don’t want to be with someone ever again… What a lie! I need love as the air that I breathe. I can be quite positive that there is not one human being living on this planet who detests love. Unfortunately, we often reject it out of our fears and previous affairs that went wrong.

Not every romantic relationship will last forever. Only love is forever. The Eros, the binding force of this life and the eternity. It is everywhere. It is in every living being and in every particle that our eyes can’t detect.

Maybe our dreams can be non-existent, projected pieces of the reality that we hope will come true. Maybe most of our dreams will never see the light of the day. Love is the only dream we can live in every single moment of our lives. Why we oppose it when it happens? Why we stay miserable when it no longer exists in our relationships and refuse to find it again? Why it is, that something we need the most, we reject with such superiority as if it is the most insignificant item on our shopping list? Can’t we just simply say- I do?

Thoughts

From Infatuation to Inquisition

Falling in love… The most successful way of our own mind playing games with us. The „trick or treat“ of the cloud in the air we build from our own fantasies… And then, when it is over we blame the other side for playing with us, for using us, for destroying our lives. Funny how the responsibility is always in the hands of the other, isn’t it?
What we usually think it is love, is in fact infatuation. In English language dictionary, this word is described as – An intense but short lived passion or admiration for someone or something.

I fell in love. I fell hard, so hard that the part of my brain assigned for logical thinking was completely switched off. I saw all the red flags, I ignored all the gut feelings telling me that something was wrong. I gave my heart and my soul to a person who was successful in awakening my emotions but never really reciprocated in the way I needed him to. Maybe he didn’t know how- was my excuse for him. The truth was much more simple – He couldn’t show something he didn’t feel, he couldn’t act anymore and tell me things I wanted to hear. So sad when a woman gets satisfied with words and no actions from a man she loves. To take crumbs of his good mood, to listen patiently to his humiliating words… „Oh, I will do this and he will love me better“, was my daily mantra… It was like waiting for Godot who was never going to come.

When we think of romance, we say that Disney or Brothers Grimm ruined generations of innocent females, offering them the unattainable idea of the perfect Prince Charming. For me, my romantic guide has always been Aristotle and his theory that the true love is reflected as what he described as “two bodies and one soul”. Aristotle’s version of the special, romantic love is the kind of love two people find in each other’s virtues, as he poetically claimed it. It is a love of a higher status, ethically, aesthetically, and even metaphysically. It is a love that makes us want to become a better human being, the love that transforms us without a need to change us. Where we are accepted for who we are and loved for the person that each one of us is. I hoped for living that kind of love. All I could take as the moral of my own story was that I should have loved myself better.

It took me years to accept the failure and leave. It took me months to recover from leaving. It has been a year since. Now when I look at it I am sad for the both of us. For me that I settled for something less than I deserved, and for him that he settled for anything just in order to have a wife. I wasn’t someone special, anyone could have been me and he would be equally “happy”.

Men are more practical I guess. Yes, men are in quest for love too, but they get trapped in things that feed their egos rather than in things they really crave, in emotional sense. Many of them realize ( rather sooner than later ) that the pleasant package of their significant others doesn’t necessarily imply a pleasant and compassionate soul. For the time being, let us leave nicely packed women to men who have no imagination…

My own love story was a lesson that I hope I will never fail again. I just wonder why lack of emotion isn’t considered an abuse? We consider abusive only if there is physical or verbal violence involved. What about claiming love when we feel everything but? Shouldn’t that be considered the worst form of maltreatment?

Do I regret loving him? No, I could never say I do. I was proud of my choice, I loved the emotion connected to him. Love is so beautiful that is never a waste. But, plenty of time was wasted trying to find love where love couldn’t be found.

Poets and writers weren’t deceptive liars. Despite all the negative experiences we had, always believe in love. I still do. Just the same as I believed before my emotional breakdown. Added to that, being with someone just for the sake of not being alone is the true inquisition, the most powerful self torture we consciously settle on.

Wrongly, we think how the purpose of love is happiness. I think that standpoint is far away from the truth simply because happiness is a relative notion. Rarely two people have the same vision of happiness, it is an intimate perception of our inner selves. Purpose of love is satisfaction. Peace of mind. No doubt. No questioning as to what have I done. True love is a calm water that runs deep. It cleanses. It perserves because it is based on the truth of two imperfect beings who don’t have to be what they are not in order to be accepted and respected by the other.

Love shouldn’t hurt or be difficult to maintain. Love flows and hearts follow. It binds two souls into one being that raise above the physical world. Nothing can compensate it and nothing can fill the void if it doesn’t exist. Maybe now is a good moment to summarize whether we like what we have gained and/or what we have become? Somehow I feel that no material capital can compensate empty, hurt, and broken heart… It is the only asset we have.

Thoughts

Just a thought

Fear of loneliness shouldn’t be a reason to get married. Mutual values and same beliefs and visions, admiration and respect for each other and love should be the only reasons to say “I do”. Marriage is a beautiful thing, but to be beautiful in practice and not just in theory, both partners need to give 100% of themselves into it.

However, there is always that sarcastic thought in my mind that tells me – if Apple were to make a gadget that will fail in performance 52% of the time, would I buy it?!

Thoughts

Human sexuality

My reaction to https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/12/style/how-often-should-we-be-having-sex.html?smid=fb-nytimes&smtyp=cur&smvar=q3eg

Human sexuality is a very complex thing and something we are the most vulnerable about. We should be able to be who we are with our partners and they should accept us as such. Revealing our “dark” side to the person we are going to spend our lives with enhances and strengthens trust between partners. If our fantasies and desires are rejected as “not normal” or peculiar, we might face serious frustrations that might develop more serious problems ( in men, for example,  hair loss, depression, pornography addiction, etc. ). Being deprived of the bodily release of sexual tension in the relationship without children might result with a complete absence of it once the kids come. Human sexuality needs to be constantly inspired and our fantasies need to find their way out, just like poetry or music, it is our creative force, the most important human “drive”. This is a serious issue that nobody should overlook.

 

Thoughts

Go giver or a go getter?

Eid Al Adha is near. In just a few days. A feast of sacrifice, remembering Prophet Ibrahim who was willing to sacrifice his son, Ismael, after dreaming that he had received a message from Allah to do so. 

Every year we remember this story of a faithful servant who was ready to take a life of his only child and endless mercy of Allah who took a ram instead of a twelve-year-old boy. 

You have fulfilled the vision. Indeed, We thus reward the doers of good. ( 37:105 )

This day of the Feast of the Sacrifice is a great opportunity to remember those in need. We all lead busy lives and get too much self-oriented most of the time. It is no judgment of mine, just an observation. We are go- getters, running after career success, money, recognition, praise. Constantly in competition with ourselves and all around us. Too busy to take a break and simply breathe.

We usually only give if we are going to get something out of it. How sorrowful, unfulfilling and unsatisfying that must be… Is it a charity if we photograph what we have given to others? Is it a charity to talk about it on every occasion we get? Is it a charity to expose people in need for our own promotion?

Charity is a wonderful act of heart only if done in silence, when even your left hand doesn’t know what the right one has given. Added to that, we have managed to materialize everything, even good will has its price. It is always expected to give money, to pay, to spend,… Most say that everything has its price tag on. How sad indeed that world would be when everything could be bought. It would make a person very poor, don’t you think?

In Islam, a smile is sadaqa ( charity ). Isn’t that the most beautiful thing that you could have read today? A smile! As simple as that. Yet, so difficult just to offer a smile and a kind word. It’s pathetic, isn’t it? Who can benefit from that?! A smile cannot buy anything, right?

I think that a smile can open the door to Heaven for all of us. Kindness will never be out of fashion. It is not important how much we can give, but how we give it. If our hearts are empty, cold and poisoned with hate, giving money in billions will not save our souls from dying in despair. The purity of heart, on the other hand, will always be rewarded. Give and you shall receive. Give not regretting it, give not trying to get it back, give by letting it go in all happiness. The world needs more go-givers. Spread love. Always.

May your hearts be blessed with peace.

 

 

 

 

Thoughts

Thank you for supporting Love and Dreams

I have started this blog officially six years ago, but haven’t published it until recently. To be quite honest with you, I haven’t realized there is a publishing “button”. It took me years in between posts, it was something I planned to send to my friend Dima as a virtual cookbook.

Then, it started to become some sort of Libro di pensieri for me. The memory book of the things I love to cook, some places I have visited, some thoughts… Being a philosopher by profession, I was scared to suffocate my readers with often boring and dull philosophical language. Instead, I have decided to use the language of the heart that the entire world understands.

I haven’t been a member of this blogging community for a long time, but so many of you have touched my heart with your kindness, support, and positivity. Online “social life” can be quite unforgiving, often cruel and vicious. Here, I have found nothing but love.

I am happy that you entered my world of Amoris et Somniorum. I feel humbled for getting my first 100 followers so unexpectedly quickly. I am very grateful for this little community that all of us created together.

I would like to believe that our words can inspire many. To make a change. To make someone’s life better. To challenge and improve. The only legacy we have is the thought and ability to implement it in our lives.

Let us make our thoughts brighter and lighter. When nothing else can help, let us try with love.

I hope my stories about my loves, inspirations, and ideas have brightened your day for just a second at least. If I have managed to achieve that, then I consider it a great success.

Thank you, Tatjana ( Amoris et Somniorum )

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Thoughts

You feel bad… As compared to what?

A few days ago I was talking to my friend about life, dreams, desires, and goals concerning my love and career life. You know, the usual friend talk. What she told me made me think that I might be ( finally ) onto something.

She said: “I can’t believe how much you have changed!” I asked if that was a good or a bad thing. Of course, she went on the positive side, praising me and being proud of me. I love her so much, not only because she gives the best ego massage, but because she is one of the kindest people I know. She told me how I have completely stopped complaining and how it is refreshing to be beside me.

Don’t get me wrong, this is not a saga about the brilliant me, I don’t want to be wrongly understood. But, life has taught me many things. Specifically, the last year was crucial for my transformation. 

I looked myself in the mirror and I didn’t see who I was anymore. I saw a tired, exhausted face that couldn’t breathe normally. Stressed, anxious and concerned. Lost, sad and in constant pain. Living from day to day not feeling relevant, not knowing what my purpose was… I couldn’t believe what I have allowed to happen. I couldn’t believe what things I made myself tolerate as normal. No, that person was definitely not me.

Be smart and never blame anyone for your misfortunes but yourselves. Noone made you stay in the bad situation, it was your decision. Never rant over another human being or circumstances because you were not strong enough and kept delaying the inevitable. Some people lose years and decades of their lives blaming others for their inability to change. Don’t go there… It is a black hole there is no way out from.

2016. was an emotional rollercoaster and I was determined to make the change I needed in order to live again. In order to bring my self-respect back. To be me for a while. Me I have lost along the way. I will not go into details, but all of us have stories that can be related to mine. 

I fell in grief and despair for a couple of months and I really felt like my mind and body joined against me. The same “looking myself into mirror” moment happened and I asked myself what I was doing, why was I spending so much time grieving something that died a long time ago. I was desperate, devastated and with no clear vision of myself.

I knew the new me was going to be born. I was determined to make it happen. I was determined to break myself into pieces and to rise against everything.

I threw away books that were only making me more desperate like Five stages of grief, etc. There are no stages of grief. There is no time that you can afford being wasted if you already lost that time while suffering because of something. Books and experts were suggesting to take time between 2 and 5 years to get yourself together.

I said no to that and I turned to Rocky Balboa, the greatest philosopher I know. And his line: “It is not important how hard you get hit, but how fast you get up”, resonated with me. I started training my body, training my mind through meditation and prayer and in six months I have completely recovered. Not to mention that general quality of my life improved, in all fields. I met people who affected my life more than they could have ever imagined. All it takes is a simple conversation with someone who understands and connects with you.

We can complain and whine and always be unsatisfied with things. You can say your life is bad and horrible, but I’d ask you – why your life is horrible, as compared to what? What is that that is happening to you that cannot be improved, changed or simply discarded like garbage? Just look at all the things that you are blessed with. All the people that come around when you need them. There is no coincidence in that…

You have two ways. Either fall down and crawl for years in your own mud. Or, get up, clean up and work on yourself. It is not difficult. You don’t need special trainers, special books, special treatments… Those are just excuses not to move and do something. The tools are in your thoughts and in your heart. Happiness and satisfaction bring abundance. Misery always brings more miserable friends. Keep that in mind.

Life is beautiful… No matter how difficult it can get, it is all the matter of perspective. We live and we learn. We will rise or we will fall. It all depends on how we see things. It is not said – You are the architect of your life – for no particular reason. God equipped us with free will and gave us the tools we needed to lead the best possible lives. There is no fault in God’s creation. And yet, when bad things happen, when we marry bad people, when we raise bad children, when we overspend our money,…, we say it was God’s will. Let us not call God accountable for the things that we consciously and unconsciously do.

I choose to see things without judgment and anger, but understanding and acceptance. Resentment, jealousy, envy, hate… All of them are poison for your soul only, because they will not harm anyone but you.

I always choose love as an option. Love yourselves ( not in a narcissistic, but in a healthy way ) and you will be loved back. There is so much love in this cruel, cold hearted and unsafe world. Be that oasis of fresh water in a harsh environment of the desert. You are the only safe asset that you own. Don’t lose it…

Thoughts

Changes make us grow

Panta rei…Everything flows, everything is constantly changing. Of all of the things, only change itself is real and evident. There comes a point in life when change becomes a necessity, a must. We have to acknowledge the presence of that need in order to happen.

Many of us are afraid of changes, always thinking that it isn’t going to bring anything good, that it is better not to take risks and stay in the safe cocoon blissfully unaware of the world around us (and the world inside us). Over analysing paralyses us and we often lose opportunities that happen not so often.

We have to be ready to take action and never pull back only because we “have never done that before”. Dare to dream… Visions of brave people, people with ideals, made timeless things that last for centuries… But, we have limited time. Today is the best day to start, to go out of our comfort zone and embrace the possibility of change.

“The dream was marvellous but the terror was great; we must treasure the dream whatever the terror.” 

The Epic of Gilgamesh

Thoughts

Why do we love?

It is both, a curse and a blessing, to have a tendency to seek the truth, the explanations of the unknown and justifications of the decisions that we make along. Why does something as innocent as love need to be justified? Is it, perhaps, that we want to understand our own inner needs better or is it because we suffer from the need of the acceptance of the others? Do we need other people to like whom we like and love whom we love?

How can we justify that we love certain individuals for themselves and not for their properties? There is no “type” for love. If we “love” for money, fame, a pair of beautiful eyes, attractive body,… we don’t know how to love. 

We are all prone to loving and to be loved. We get so attached to the idea of love that we can’t imagine that someone else could take a place of our beloved. Does that imply that we cannot love without losses? If we love someone that much to lose ourselves for them… Or if we lose them for one reason or another… It seems love isn’t so innocent after all. 

It hurts, it breaks, it ruins the logical, reasonable thinking and yet we all want it. We all crave that special one in our lives who will make everything better just by a mere existence. However, if we love in order to be completed, we shall never be satisfied and our expectations of our significant other will be the obstacle that we shall collapse on.

What do we get out of love? Aristotle promoted the idea of love relationships as self-knowledge. What did he mean by that? Well, he observed love as a mirror that is reflecting one’s character back to him or her. This metaphor also suggests that our beloveds will be in almost all respects similar to us, so we can, just by observing them, get to know ourselves better in the ways that are much more objective.

But, does it really help us to see ourselves through someone else if that isn’t improving us in any way? If we are able to interact and form successful relationships only with people who are similar to us, that implies that all relationships that are based on convenience, expectations and just in order to settle down, will, a priori, fail?

I would agree that relationships could work out in the conditions mentioned above. But, will that be love? Is that what we were desiring for our entire lives – something that we in the end just “get over with” and reconcile with “I’ll try to make it work” mindset? It is sad that we are ready to live in contradiction with our own mind, senses, and desires. We choose to conform rather than live.

Love is supposed to increase our sense of well being. It elevates our sense of self-worth and helps in building our characters. We fully develop only through love and that is the absolute truth that applies to every single aspect of our lives. 

Life gets much more fulfilled when we love each other with the same passion, desire, and need. Yes, need for love and the expression of love should be the same for both partners. Opposites do not attract, they subtract and leave wounds and grief, that sometimes last for a life time. Latin people had a wonderful proverb – Similis simili gaudet, which would mean that Similarities are happy for each other.

So why to “love” just for the sake of having that word in your vocabulary? Why not love because by loving we bring the best in each other? Why not love to be worthy of the blessings that follow it? Love doesn’t create conflicts, it solves them. Yes, people who love each other can fight, but they will not manage to hold onto anger for more than few minutes. When two people love the same way, the heart is one. By hurting your beloved one, you hurt yourself… And in that, you will find logic. No matter how romantically irrational what I have just said sounds to you. And no change in how your partner looks or difficulties of life will interrupt that. Do you know how you will know? By achieving peace of mind and a deep sensation of satisfaction… Listen to your body, for it is the indicator of your happiness and suffering.