Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Of Vesta's ceremony

 At the beginning of this year I was attempting to make this Vesta's year. It failed. I couldn't get the hang of myself and keep myself disciplined. Suffered from a health issue that made me extremely tired and indisposed. I'd sleep in pain and most of my time I'd be hanging around the internet aimlessly.

Instead of judging her guilty (and being so disappointed with myself), I looked inside and followed her steps. And I saw how her job is much more complex than it seems to be. It's like when we easily judge mayors and other administrator for some clear mismanagement but we don't see how their work is much more beyond that.

So I realized I got so used to being me that I sometimes forget what a silly pityful being I am, and in the outcome she just seems the most potent force inside me. Couldn't she destroy them dark feelings, but she did refrain all this hatred and frustration. And that's one amazing achievement. All this painful stream was mostly directed inwards. It doesn't affect others for I shut down to a self-destructive quietude.

Maybe this is all but a comforting lie I'm telling myself to get a peaceful night rest. It might be, but I don't care. In spite of all her mistakes, just when I think all she puts up with... I hope that would be my own notion of maturity, to bear with circumstances in spite of what they do with us inside. Just when thinking of all the troubles I avoid for knowing what they will bring me, that's one very wise act on my side.

Of Exoverses

 Finally I've got myself another refreshing branch of the innerverse concept. Unlike just unravelling my own inner world, this is about exploring life out there. It's about understanding how others behave, and how they perceive the world. Every one has got enemies, weakenesses and they all work with the same prime words, they just have different meanings to them, or place them around differently. Each person has their own weight to concepts. How is their notion of being tired or skilled. What means to them being in love, or what is an outrageous behavior.

And how would other people's feelings be stringed? Would they have one big monster chasing them? Would it be a very well protected city? Would they be constantly tormented day and night? Is it an empire built over a massive dungeon imprisoning one single apocalyptical monster miles below? Is it a place in a deep valley, walled by giant mountains that prevent sun from getting in? Or is it a gigantic empire over the hills, an impressive civilization, only though with hidden dirty under the rag? Maybe is it a very simple kingdom, however free of bellical conflicts and economical issues?

That's the point of this exostudy, for me to see how other people feel. How different it could be to string other people's lives, how refreshing that would be. How it would open my eyes... Like the search for exobiologic signs is based upon the premise it can expand our own knowledge about our own terrestrial life, my own exostudies can expand my self-knowledge.

Of Arterial Guidelines

 It feels slightly disturbing when I feel I am working with possible returning quintessences. It's like I am dealing with some potentially dangerous outlawed idea. Or then distressed, as if dealing with people who've gotten their share already, and came back hidden in disguise for another portion.

Right in front of me there's one lad I'm pretty sure has been mentioned here before, back to the days where I was building some artistic principles of mine. I haven't got time to check the files and documents, so I can't prove it has been already here before. Either way, there it goes another attempt to have it as a sealed quintessence.

This is one of the helping techniques to make solid designs. Whenever there's a messy confusion of lines or that there's nothing standing out clear in the composition, I've learned that I can use this that I've been calling Arterial Lines to show the most relevant aspect of the highlighted part of it. And not only that, it has an style to it that gives the image a very polished appeal to the shapes with outlines engrossed.

Apparently this helps the brain to understand and process the exposed image with more ease, which brings him joy. The thing is that it's very much present not only in images, but also in music, or in stories. I do feel the Arterial Guideline, very distintictively in these different modalities. It indeed is one nice tool to have around.  

Of Sealed Quintessences

 Though last month I had this needlework a little better wrought, with a story interwoven through the texts, the expression of the meaning of each thought of mine in there was sacrificed in exchange. By trying to make them fit in a storyline, I lost a lot in the terms of definition of these texts, like what I meant with fraud, jealousy or being uninspired.

I felt that it was so incomplete under this circumstance that I should even maybe rewrite them. They weren't unloaded effectively, and there were uncomfortable remainings of them. That is something that bothers me a lot, when a piece of work leave these traces behind.

When I compose something that pretty much represents almost perfectly the feeling I am trying to express I am calling a Sealed Quintessence. It's when I name all these ideas and feelings, and in this name I try to have the essence concealed. Sometimes I can get it right, and sometimes I don't. When it doesn't work and the quintessence has leaked around, it's when returning quintessences happen.

My objective is to make transferrence occur without leaks. The better sealed it is, the chance of having returning quintessences and rq trials decreases. But quintessences do show different degrees of resistance against sealing. They might have different categories, like feelings that I can easily transform into gems.

But it also seems to depend on their depth of my oceanic perception of them. Ideas in thalassic level will show a higher probability of being inaccurately sealed. It's better to wait to fish them out only when they're lured close enough to photic surface. The biggest ideas, though, won't come so easily...

Of Thalassic Fishing

 While I feel I have lost my powers, I've been trying to understand what is it that I've been doing here all along. What kept me in here for more than two years? What is it that has moved me and kept making me having constant thoughts, enough to generate a full book worth of content?

Apparently it seems that what I do is to perceive those mostly neglected thoughts and bring them to surface. It's my job to feel those very faint signals of thoughts, and bring them up, where I can analyze and admire their beauty. Usually they bring secret treasures with them, as they make me understand little factual aspects of my daily life, in the most braudelian fashion possible.

This is how introspective incursions have helped me, by making me understand so much about myself. All these psychological theories I've got came from this, and later practical uses I've got from them that leaves people so impressed are a proof that this is a good job for me to have and to get better at.

The thing, though is that I require these sensitive sensors to be able to feel those things. The decreasing of my sensibility, even as slightly as it can get, already gets in the way of the productivity. It seems to be all that matters, so I must work to keep it as sharp as I possibly can.

Of living in sprints

 It's always been a very essential question to me, knowing whether I am beyond or behind (who knows). There's always evidence indicating me as someone awkwardly behind, at the same time here and there I get some comforting signs that I have my own worth. The question that remains is whether these are coexisting or followups of each other.

Though sharp reasoning tell the probability of coexistence as I tell of being behind in some aspects of my life (mostly of social nature, of course) while beyond in other areas, such as unbound creativity (with no evaluation of financial gain, of course). But I get some indications to the contrary. I can get behind on both, while I can also get beyond on both, and I don't know very well why.

My life is bland and uneventful, except for occasional outbursts of dense productivity or social participation. Rarely at the same time (and when it is it's goldilockingly amazing), but to each it's a sudden moment when I wake up and run and do lots of things, all to settle down to slumber again for another time. Yeah, that definitely sums up my life. I suddenly wake up, look at my watch and, realizing the grave danged of lateness, I run, run, run. Then I feel that was good enough, and as the despair wears off, I decide to rest a little.

What seems important for me to ponder here is why do I decide to rest a little. Is it just because I feel I've done enough not to be late? Is that all that moves me? Is it just the last-minute panic that will always scare me to move?

Of Capital People

 Those highly influential forces are very dangerous when hiding behind thalassic curtains. I have to uncover them, and understand thoroughly all these emotions and drives that move me. For instance, why do I seek the people I seek.

It's clear to me we all seek people who have life in them. We just have different assumptions on what having life means. I like those who have life around them, wherever they are. Whether it's intelligence or curiosity, their presence is vital to me, and I feel attracted to them, intellectually, or romantically sometimes as well.

It's like growing up in a place where people are all emptyheaded and, I'll be polite here, just plainly uninteresting with boring talk about beer and football and cars and women, and then you meet people with Ideas, and they seem to be aware of the big world beyond. They talk about international politics, music, science and world history. They might live in a very little town or a faroff house, but their presence and knowledge makes up for that. The opposite doesn't work for me.

And I like myself being like this, and it's a nice protection against solitude. It's also one of the factors that determine the way I string my life into the innerverse. It's one of these Gravity things that keep a rivalry between Ilium and Lazuria.

Of a slow march to death

What scares me about time isn't just how relentless it is when bringing us to death, it's how we start literally feeling it closer. In our weak bones, stiff muscles. It seems to exist simply to deter us from neglecting this inexorable fate, but to force us to acknowledge and face constantly that we are already dying.

I hate feeling the death coming closer to my body through the agency of time. It sounds so rude to say such a thing, but then I can't really tell if this is right or wrong to be said, but there it goes: aging is a disease that can't be healed. We get weaker and everything starts malfunctioning. We lose power and energy. We get trapped in sad, boring routines in order to treat our health well.

And the dreadful part of it all is that we adapt. We get used to living to it. We adapt to this condition. And that's not beautiful or reassuring. On the contrary, it's scary. We forget what we used to have. In order to survive, we supress memories of great experiences from the past.

We die, little by little, day by day. Each day when we get to read one less page, we're already tired. Each day we learn one less thing for being too worried about others things. We become less sentient, we become more like zombies. It's like slowly drowsing away, without noticing our belongings and traits taken from us, one by one.

Of Trygve's Roar

 Since his return, I've been paying attention to him, this Trygve guy. It's a power that I was sort of able to reclaim, and then I have been trying to understand him again so I could get better at summoning him. Or finding him again when he is going to get lost again in the woods.

Some of these traits of his essence I was aware before, and some I learned right when he came back. But then there seems always be some other unperceived notions to this strange, mysterious and always surprising character, and it's the essence of unsheltered courage.

That's about how to deal with life, how to adapt to it. Somehow turning the refuse down and accepting it makes the pain much less affecting. So if life gives you heat, bring it in. When you have scorching cold, open your chest towards it. Be willing to accept with open arms what is given to bring you down.

When life roars at you, you roar back.

Of Lifeframes (Zombie Period)

 There are siderooms full of unfinished and unexplored projects I've initiated through the existence of this blog. One of them I barely touched after I got the first woven thread was this one about Lifeframes. There I called it the Goldilocks period of life, when everything is so sweet and we keep routines we love to remember as an unchronological stream.

This new one, similar in several aspects to Goldilocks, is more of a downer. I call it the Zombie period. It's when our life is just going in an automatic mode. Day after day, we aren't driven by any passions. We just get out of bed, do our deeds, head back home, hang around something until time is up to go sleep again.

This is the result of a lack of motivation, a lack of reason to live. No self-steem to feel worthy of being passionate. Being passionate, we constantly are being taught, leads to suffering. This moment in life seems to usually happen after we fall from some metaphorical ladders, and is constant in stages of depression.

It feels like being trapped in the Samsara, so it's a terrible fate for someone to be living in this routine. Imagine lingering in this doomed state for years. Imagine that a good chunk of the world population live through this for most of their lives...

Of Pavlovian detour of judgement

 Wondering about life is one weird exercise. There are some strange twisting points in there, when things reveal themselves in queer manners. It's hard to explain but, for instance, there are certain moments when I notice that there these things that we assume we know about life are so far how others tell them to be. But them we get on the battlefield, and we see several more stuff we can't understand how no one ever told us about.

One of these things I'm learning by myself is about how life tries to push us away from ourselves. And it's made so by some complex conditioning combinations that lead us to close our tolerance towards some stuff and locking ourselves from others, all because by several reasons we can feel threatened by the world around us.

What I am trying to say is that apparently innocence can leave us wiser in reasoning. By scarring ourselves through life, we get so easily biased by all associations we make towards things that we become grumpy old fellas, with rancorous assumptions and being obnoxiously opnionated.

We can't, however, remain innocent through life, for we won't meet life. But we can't let ourselves be scarred by everything, and let wounds to get deep enough to damage our natural opinions about some matter to be stained by an external agent, and start hating a group of people for the sake of one person, or generalize a whole genre of experiences due to one bad experience. We can't let our judgement on the world suffer such detours.

Of solipsistic abandon

 No one ever wishes to feel lonely. Solitude is something entirely else. I like being in solitude with my emotions. But when I feel there's no other to whom I can relate those feelings, this is what makes me feel pretty miserably lonely.

I feel I am the only one having difficulties, doubts and insecurities. I hate when people don't admit facing difficulty, or opening their troubles to me. Even when they are so... lonely. They get so annoyed when I am suffering with a brokenheart or any other frustration, that I think they never felt it themselves. It seems only I feel emotions.

Here comes one big thalassic island coming to surface. Those very boiled down emotions that I have that are hard to express, as complex as they are, so forgive me if I am not really able to explain it minutely. But god, it makes feel less empathy towards others, it makes me feel they don't feel the world or sit around it with wonderings like mine. So much they don't express their struggle or their humanity, I naturally start not being able to see it. I see them as empty wanderers.

I don't usually make a lot of stupid things because of that, because I know how it works so I don't trust my feelings. No, the worst consequence is that I feel that it is unnatural to go through these hardships. I feel it is my fault if it's hard for me. I feel it is my fault something doesn't seem to happen.

Strange then it becomes to me, unwillingly belonging to a solipsistic isolation, when I see things that I feel just mine being expressed by others. Strange when dreams and fears of mine are shown by others. Depending on the circumstances, I can feel either relief or... jealousy. It's a delicate issue to me.

Of lost trance powers

Though I am feeling safe and, in a way, whole again, one thing I wasn't still able to claim back. I had powers that are now gone. Still gone. This is, clearly, what I used to call the Trances. I knew I had to understand what made them happen, and my sad fate is that I lost it before I could really understand.

I get sparkles of it sometimes, but it's just so faint. I don't know how my mojo worked for trances to happen as they used to, but sure they were utmost essential to creation of content. I don't know if it's the weariness of the journey, or the pressure of life out there squashing my peace and sensitivity, or if I am changing into something else, someone else. Not evolving, or changing it for a new self with new perks, I am afraid. Maybe it was a finite resource, like fossil oil running short and dry.

In the hero's journey, this would be the frame of the story when characters must fight on without their special weapon. We managed to get here with the aid of this powerful ally, now you've got to prove you can go on by yourself, or be strong enough to resist attacks without it. So where did it go, or why was it taken, I don't know. It's just not here and there's a feeling of powerlessness trying to conquer me, but I won't bend down.

My belief that I had been hanging around too much with people, trying to understand their amazing solving skills and their social skills. Is it really that trances don't coexist with a developed social life? Well, I've been having little time for me to dig in and lay baits with my introspective incursions. If that's that, I can just relearn it again, or find new reserves. If it was just a momentary consequence, a fortunate side effect of the nerd and isolate life I have been living, absorbing and learning and absorbing and internalizing everything to a point where I just exploded them thoughts out of me, I just need to remake these steps. Movies, books, music, games, thousands of them. Artists to inspire me, landscapes to sooth me. All alone if I must to.

But... and the doors that social network have opened for me? I have to decide what is most important to me in this moment.

Of creative block

 It took me some time in my life, but I started finally made sense of all my ramblings and saw a common theme through it all. I like the creation, the instinctive composition, the inventive distortion, the evolving fluidity. I'd like to understand how the popping of a new idea happens, and what are the circumstances involved.

But I keep talking about it and I want to be creative myself. I try to show myself creative through these exercises, but recently I am feeling ashamed about how I fail to meet those standards. Even to keep up with ideas I used to have, I can't create content like I used to do.

When asking some friends how do they get to be creative, they see nothing to be talked about, for everything is just handled to them. There's just no struggle for them. They've got no trances of absurd geniality where they can seem to enter a bonus stage and harvest as many ideas as they can. Strange. It seems to happen only to me.

I wonder if it's just a passing phase, or if this is not my thing. I feel like giving up with the frustration that it is the ridiculous balance between effort and time invested and ideas, creations and products squeezed out. I have to find out somehow. And reverse the results if negative.

Of honest disentitlement

 I like things fair. Just like I don't enjoy underestimation, I don't appreciate much overestimation either. I often assume people consider me some sort of autist idiot, which is kind of true, but some come to me with a strange acknowledgement of some skills of mine. It feels fishy even if it's good to feel that I have some prestige, but I don't like how it's given to me. I feel most credits I get I don't really deserve.

I don't consider myself intelligent or bearer of any great talent. Yet, people insist so, which is very unfair to them. Why do they get impressed by my ordinary deeds when there's much more impressive accomplishments out there, oftenly achiedved by themselves?

I find it highly unfair that people consider me blessed with intelligence. Really, just because I know the meaning of enantiodromia, distopia and I know how to use irony correctly? Or because english or know some precise historical date or eventually by luck my drawings look good? What about people who handle real world problems and got quick and efficient sollutions for these problems? What about people who are effectively communicative and get great friendships? Those people can enjoy life and they have figured out the safe way through it. I am particularly stupid in these matters, I stumble around like I am blind fool, so I value these abilities immensely.

I consider myself a fraud, because people think I know so much, and I know nothing. I am highly selective about things I show, and this seems to convice people (or then they convince me to be convinced). I don't even know if that's would be a socreatean sign of intelligence, but I don't care, I don't feel worthy of that. The things I know aren't of much use. They don't bring people warmth or ease their hunger. These skills don't even help me out in the first place.

I wonder if what I call ordinary is extraordinary to them. But it makes no sense, I am much left behind in most things, in very basically ordinary things, like cleaning the house or using the ATM. There's something strangely fishy about their judgement. It just doesn't weigh out well, and sometimes I get paranoid about that.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Checkpoint #32

November turned my own foundations upside down. All judged, questioned, at stake. I needed time to understand all this cluttered confusion, like one of those glasses, with several liquids naturally separated in perfect layers due to their different density, that gets shaken and slowly gets them restabilized and separated again. What are my motivations? What I seek in life? What even is my identity? All that I am, is that enough maturity to be in a romantic relationship? Am I enough to be a functional member of this society? Do I have enough to be a person?

And I found myself trying to be what I am not. Trying to be more than what I can be. One part of me was too desperate to change, the other one too proud to change, but in the end I just unable to anyway. Be it a glad or sad thing, I'm back on track. I just hope there has been a good lesson learned in my heart to be worth the trouble, but I'm feeling more comfortable now, and that makes me a better person too, more amiable and friendly. Just don't step on my wounded toe.

After all, there's no hurrying things ahead of their time. I had plenty of things written for this month, but suddenly life twists around and most of what I had written doesn't make sense anymore. I was reading the checkpoint text I had ready from some ten days ago and it felt half-year old already. I think this saturday and sunday alone I got three (almost four) of my major abscission issues resolved, and I'm feeling so good about myself in this moment right now. It's almost unbelievable. Having such a light chest now so sudden. So good.

Wasn't able to write much, that's still hard for me to try writing as much as I used to, and I can't even say I had any idea at all, for I was too troubled with these abscission ghosts haunting me. I can't even say I had all these demons captured like I hint in the texts, but I think almost everything is in there. No wonder, for the texts this month are almost entirely about me opening my heart, and I wouldn't even recommend anyone to read them.

Except that, at the last minute I had a great idea, and as I've managed to chain the texts in order to make my usual story, when I saw it I decided to tell a stringed story about Ilium and Raseri and Vesta and their friends. Somehow the way I had it first chained before layering the characters, it was all ready for that. I quite enjoyed that, making those texts to be encounters with the abscission demons. I was in need to create something like that (is one of the three abscission issues). I wish I could work more on it, though. There are enough loose ends to craft an interesting, closed-in-itself plot from these events from november.

That would be something I am proud of, but I usually feel like awarding some specific idea as it's my tradition. So I have something to be mentioned here. Finally I had the 7th version of the flames ready, now with astounding seventy-eight gems (!), and I'm enjoying what I called the trilogy of quartz. These Carbon/Coal/Calcium gems are some that have been in my mind for some months now, and I finally got them out of my mind, and I glad how they came out like this. Oh, the Chrysalis was interesting too, I long to see its future implications.

Now, another month is over, and I'll see what I can arrange for december, the very last month of this very strange year of 2013. I have an idea already, I just hope I can work it out.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Of Gems v7.0

 After a long time, and with some reconsiderations about how new gems should occur, since lots of them were really feeling like some rather specific dioramas already made of composed gems, rather than an unique feeling of its own (a prime requisite for new gems to be coined), I present the seventh update on the subject and here are the ones I accepted as new members of the gem brotherhood.

Starting with one I had to decide whether I would make it a dissidence from Onyx. And I decided I wanted to, so Argonite is going to be about übernerd things. It's about playing rpg with friends, and having some deep discussions about rather irrelevant characteristics of movies and series and books and games. It's something about the hint of medieval (and sometimes sci-fi) tone and grittiness that differs it from Onyx, which in a way is still the more cartoon-like entertainments. In a way, Argonite and Onyx would represent the adult nerd and child one. Also, Argonite feels a bit more western somehow. I'm sorry, Nintendo, I'm sorry Japan.

Speaking of ages, I'm proud to announce one of my main gems, and I'm calling it Carbon. It's about the aging process. We feel carbon when we feel the different phases of life. We feel one kind of carbon when we're close to a kindergarten school, another one near high schools and college, company buildings and retirement houses. Instead of carving one for each stage, I actually noticed there is a similar feeling to each of them, and its marrow essence that bonds them is what I'm calling Carbon. This is a dissidence of Quartz, which was bearing a too broad significance.

And since we're talking about ages, there's one specific about teenager years. I'm calling Coal this representation of the rapture of youth. It's got several other gems related to it, like sapphire, ruby, carnelian, energite, ilite, pearl, nephrite and howlite (classic rock, metal and grunge – Pearl Jam in specific brings me intense Coal feelings and memories). It's a quite coarse atmosphere, with the smell of damp and slouchness in their basement studio, with conversations about bands, porn and alcohol. It's the time of enjoyment of the rapture of their youth, a time of dares and discoveries, of going totally rad, dud. It's when the foundations of one's personality start to sprout (usually but not exactly my case), so I guess it makes sense to have this related to the gem of diamond.

One of the components of last gem is speed. I call this the Spinel gem to be the thrilling attempts to go through risk and danger to feel lawless and free. It could be so bewitching as it happens when we make exercises, when we run and we pump blood through our muscles. It breaks us free from the safe plaster routines. Spinel seems to be in the wind blazing by (and so this one could explain how winds help making such great mindscapes). Boys pull their heads out the window and scream, girls laugh in between sips of their bottles. They're feeling alive, having the time of their lives.

And I keep exploring these defining years of our personalities because they do have some poignant catchiness to them. One of the most remarkable memories everybody has from these years are their relationships. Both friendships and romantic engagements, it's when we go to a bar and see groups of friends, all possibilities of bonds and friendships, and there's jokes, there's flirting, there's serious discussion about their dreams and their visionary and passionate political debates. The gem is called Calcium. The guy slips his body back into the car, and he looks at the girls, and one of them looks at him with a smile of secrecy. It burns but will also hurt. This is a response to the beautiful days of amethyst, but rather than being just dark amethysts, it's the whole spectrum of the progression of the relationships in real life. Friends argue, they feel betrayed, bonds are broken. There's jealousy towards the new people our friends are hanging out. There's cry and sorrow too that is part of the cementing of our character. Something about this gem is what makes some 80s bands like The Cure, The Smiths, Joy Division and the brazilian Legião Urbana so popular. It's not even about the lyrics, the atmosphere of the songs give this feeling to me.

But now, changing the subject, and considering we've just been through october, there's a gem for halloween, and I'm calling it Oolite. Rather than being just garnet and opal, this is something cultural too. It isn't just the ruby/carnelian events, but the spooky essence of it too that is usually shown or used as amusement (it's quite good for humor sketches). Ghost stories by the campfire also are a recreative use of Oolite. So that's a way to differentiate it from garnet and opal which are more serious stuff, specially opal. Mercury is more about wizardry while Oolite is about amusing eeriness. But I remember some twilight hours with incoming storms darkening the skies when I've felt that spooky night indeed felt like some wicked moment for witches, demons and zombies to be astray in our world, so Oolite could have that use as well.

Since this halloween thing isn't much disseminated in my country, it is still an american tradition that is seen around mostly in language schools. I'm going to give a gem called Hafnium for the american culture imposed over my own culture. So brazilian roots and imported american culture are shown with Brazilianite and Hafnium. American movies, american fast food. It's quite a hypocrisy to complain about once I write in english here in the internet, and I have this gem because I've had me some several english classes, but my reservations about globalization is what I call the Sterilization Factor. Any landscape with the same Coca-cola ads and (this is the good thing about gems) other hafnium elements, like a highly technological and practical culture ends up feeling too lifeless and featureless to me sometimes.

Now I'm going with a dissidence from tv (phosphide). I'll use Phosphate for cinema. It started making sense in my mind when I noticed how far different the moods are for watching tv and watching a movie. It's a different experience all around. Here you're paying attention to whole craft: the photography entwined with the plot, the soundtrack entangled with the dialogues. And then there's the movie theathers as well, which also bear some other implications that a tv room can't imitate (though that's not saying that makes movies better).

Going back to the eerie, there's also the ominous and sacred, and that's another paired feeling I need to divide (like I just did with Oolite and Hafnium). These are two feelings of felt dimensions, so they belong to the Chryso series (sometimes I think dunite, as dealing with degrees of light and shade, should be a chrysogem). So forgive me if I start using organicals now just for the sake of their chryso- names. I hope it's the only exception I can make for going out of the mineral/chemical world, though.

The first one is about the ominous and powerful. It's about something so epic, bearing such grandiosity and power it's scary. The gem for this sublime feeling is going to be called Chrysophyllum. It doesn't need to be scary in the sense it's evil power, just something dangerously powerful, and should not be taken lightly. The mushroom effect of an atomic explosion gives me a feeling I'm callying chrysophyllum, because... holy mother of god, that is some serious shit. But it is also in music, especially classical songs, those bombastic symphonies. O Fortuna, for instance, has this epic feeling to it, with choirs and a sense of intense grandiosity. I remember this song used to fit so well when I was imagining the dragon Smaug flying from the insides of the Lonely Mountain, and it seems that it's because both experiences have chrysophyllum in them.. f I like trying to describe this feeling of things so powerful they could bring an End, for making me think of examples and my creativity feels very inspired by it.

The second one, and last one, I'm going to call it Chrysalis. At the beginning this is the feeling of holy divinity inspired by religion. Unlike marble, which is about the melancholic veil of mortality, this would be a sense of inner peace. There's something similar to hope, the belief of something beyond. And that's the point I wanted to get at, the beyond. It's the longing we have for this transcendental... this... I don't know, this is why I'm using chrysalis to express something several people call god. But it's everywhere where there's both of these characteristics: the transcendental and the beyond. Music and art are transcendental, and the sideral space has this mysterious feeling of wondering what's beyond, and so I think that's how I feel chrysalis so easily found in art and space. The problem is that it's a sylvan being that escapes definitions, and the fun to chase chrysalis is what makes it fun. I wonder whether Chrysalis can survive in being my definitive nomenclature for this, but I don't want it to replace other chases. I just don't want it to be disputated by other gem (except maybe Lazulite or Chrysophyllum or some other now, but they would be more like archangels).

And I think that's enough for now. Last time I had sixty-eight, and I've just added ten more. Got 78 now. Argonite, Carbon, Coal, Calcium, Spinel, Oolite, Hafnium, Phosphate, Chrysophyllum and Chrysalis. It's been a long, long time since the last update, so this time I'm almost in doubt if I didn't repeat myself with choices. I think not, but this time I've noticed I had a harder time differentiating gems that are now getting very, very, very similar.

Of suburban stages (sparkles employed)

 Though they may increase in frequency depending on still unknown factors, my creative endeavours kind of happen by themselves. And though I don't quite consider these to be as important as actual, planned creations (even if qmus do have something in common with sparkles) and I never really bother capturing them, I've been realizing they would be very much welcome in this world of mine.

Sparkles come to me in all shapes, but I never get them developed any further. I 'd like to start practicing them, for I miss and need to go back the feeling of seeing the tip of my fingers creating and recreating beauty and strength and fragility and Life.

The dark arab warrior walks under heavy apocalyptic skies. The company founder who is leaving his office and has a tearjerker realization of all his dreams he acchieved. The sensual dancer wearing her exuberant tropical-colored dress fancies her abilities. The long-forsaken castle ruins, once a place for all glory, war and heated discussions and passionated meetings is now but covered with gentle autumn leaves of reddened and golden color. The two girls could after a while track their friend, who's playing his harp, sitting on a stone and watching the sea and sun setting on the horizon, and singing a song of deep solitude, sadness and beauty (hint: they're flary).

So this world offers them the chance to be real, without being actually lost in the stream of my wonderings. I don't want them to be abandoned shackles in the moors, but collective hamlets of independent sparks.

There are several stories I'd like to tell, and that have nothing to do with the main play. I like having them being placed in the same place, for several reasons. One of them is that I can have a little more control over my stories. The other advantage is that it is a much careless thing, as I just don’t need to worry about actual stringing, I'll just handle the purest creative flow. This is where I can make stories independent from all major purposes of this exercise.

However, the main reason, or the most appealing one, would be all the new tonalities they would bring to the world. I want it to be a breathing one – an alive one. All different ideas in all shapes and forms, displayed as beacon, a call for dry creatives to find inspiration and seek to keep having their minds craving to see and build, absorb and construct and create.

Of String Feeders

 Hardly I find I will ever be able to make this stringing thing perfect as I wish it to be. It's like a very complex machinery, all full of circuits and hydraulics I have to operate manually. That's just too demanding, rigid and severe, and I feel that maybe I don't even need to go all that far to get my point through.

Perhaps I won’t need to be so neurotic about having every string exchanged through. I think I might just need the main veins and arteries figured out. This is pretty much similar to learning anatomy for drawing. It's good to know all bones and muscles, but not all of them are even visible or have actual relevance to making beautiful human figures.

It's ok to turn off these feeders I call strings, as most of it is to make the physics work properly without much being lost except disposable details of unresolved subtleties, which will occur anyway. The only and most important part is to get the main message working accordingly to the stringed subject.

Of cathartic flames

 There's not much to be said about my recent struggles regarding my legitimacy of my flames. I am just not sure about them anymore, as they failed for so long. Shouldn't Vesta be more resistant in letting Raseri rise so much? I wish I could even try to live without them, but sometimes it feels they're the pest and won't let me go. I've been getting to cynical towards it, as I've been failing with them so thoroughly.

Here they are now, as I'm slowly relearning who they are. But Fire Ensemble demands too much from me. These aren't qualities I inherently possess and I go a great extent just to taste a brief scintilla. Whether they're powerless, kidnapped, poisoned or just nearing death, I've been feeling alone like never before. Ilium lied protectless for so long, bare and ready to be destroyed.

Albeit not always being here, their burning presence is one I can't ever forget. It might even be selfish and the reason it causes their presence to feel like they were there by being paid for it, like mercenaries and bounty hunters instead of actual heroes who'd defend their city through day and night. They were almost turned outlaws, and even worked under Raseri's orders, now people don't know if they are to be trusted.

Still, hope flickers once in a while. I know that one thing rings true. Whoever they are, I know their light is cathartic to me. The piercing voice of reason, the pulsating bursts of kindness, the burning flow of curiosity, the unexpected protective walling, the tension of muscles gathering energy... they're all feelings that make me feel very much alive. They're feelings that make me feel life is worth.  

Of Sfayi's Garden

 Not sure if most ideas I have are supposed to be actual work of mine or just pheripheral daydreaming that just happens to be useful somehow to the main play. And so I fill myself with little ideas that, ok, to be fair, they make it look a tad more beautiful. Like the “personal stars” side-project, the idea of Sfayi's Garden is also about little meaningful little easter eggs.

In Sfayi's Garden is where I would depict loves and crushes of my life. They're flowers, just like I use gems for crests. So there is the prairy daisy, lily, jasmine, orchid, black rose, night ivy... I justs choose those flowers by doing something similar to the stringing process, I just see how the feeling I get feels like if it was a flower.

Each one is one different girl, a different and unique type of femininity, a different personality, their own worldview, a beauty of each own. They end up also being sprouts of different kinds of girls I like. Cute and shy, tomboyish and extrovert, mature or espontaneous. All of them who just brought scents, zephyrous, refreshing perfumes to my life. One interesting note is that, in the deepest depths of my soul, they all reverberate at least one similar note inside me, and I recognize it to be the amethyst gem.

Some of them have hurt me already, and some still do... but they're beautiful the same. For some reason I can't still see, I've chosen Sfayi instead of Áine. Maybe it's this little pungent feeling that's inherent to all romantic relationships. This romantic love isn't cheerful and a naïve play.

In a way, this garden would actually be some sort of cemetery... All for past loves, all relationships that didn't work despite our effort, or ended for no reason at all or never even happened in the first place. It's a cemetery, and it's supposed to be buried.

And the last demon is sealed.

Of gold amidst sand

 I remember an old, cheap candy we had here in Brazil (still do). It was supposed to be some kind of sweet popcorn, and it was a fairly awful thing. Rubber-like and tasteless... except for some occasional appearance of one or another that was unbelievably crunchy and delicious. I never understood why the whole thing didn't taste like that.

I do now.

It was a lesson for life.

Life isn't about constant, euphoric joy. It isn't about constant excitement. Weekends are short for a reason. This is the slingshotting effect that makes the free time more precious than if we had it all the time. It's a principle in economics: what would be the worth of gold if it was as mundane as sand?

I should be expect to find just now and then eventual sweet golden moments in our otherwise gritty sandy journey. As a creative one, it's a tremendous weight off my shoulder to realize producing sand doesn't take the merit from the gold we make. The bad work we do doesn't come in detriment of the good one. I remember a time when I'd have much more fun drawing and having fewer occasional successes than now.

As usual, I am stricken with self-doubt on things I do (this blog). I shouldn't be ashamed of coming up with so many of these sand-like thoughts. I'm just giving all I've got. I'm puking out everything that comes to my mind. You'd expect such sincere display to show both great and gross. I'd always think that I shouldn't make the gold so unaccessible, but it's natural that gold-like moments are and should be scarce like this.

This is no finished work of art made of carefully crafted elements, even though sometimes I try, but it's my natural process of trying to find my way. I try to unload this overloaded mind, trying to get this heavy fog out of my thinking process, even if stumbling so much. In fact, it's the struggle that should make it feel like one very inspiring human journey.

Of Vesta's Minute

 Dexterity is one of those words that one day I suddenly realize it just doesn't hung around my mind very much, and after some time I understand why. Usually I siege those problems for a while, trying to make up for that mistake. And so that's a skill I rarely ever seem to possess, unless if I'm under some trance state, and I've been working to make it be constantly more present.

In my normal state, unadulterated by determination, I'm just sluggish and clumsy. My time is wasted in a 80% (recently worse) due to that. I just feel overwhelmed by so much to do, and I do so little. By realizing such an inelegant or disgraceful trait of mine, I've started doing once in a while something I've been calling the Vesta's Minute.

Whenever I'm almost desperately overwhelmed by too many things to be done under such a short amount of time (I've brought it upon myself), I use this rush of dexterity I just need to perform this little activity and notice it won’t take as much time as I thought. Really, things don't take much of our time as we initially suppose them to.

I perform the Vesta's Minute by counting down every second, and so my perfomance increases a thousandfold. I still don't have enough energy or motivation to concentrate and focus myself like that for a longer time period. It's hard to expand it past to half an hour, but I'll practice developing into days or weeks, months and hopefully years. I think I can make up for all the hollow years of my existence.

In a time where Raseri's incompetence as a leader is bringing a civil war, Vesta's secret group of resistance has the Fire Ensemble meeting again in hiding, and Hephaestus is slowly studying the ways to rebuild and renovate his facilities. Zhu Rong can just do his short sprint, but it's enough to battle their way back against Raseri. All the while, she's also helping Trygve to recover the last abscission demons.  

Of Sonder Peaks (reverse string)

 My hesitation is killing me, but I don't know how to take these steps in the making of my world. I just don't feel prepared for it. It's something that seems beyond stringing capabilities, but I want to do it perfectly stringed. I don't want to look at it and keep feeling there's always something missing.

Somehow I am just too worried about taking it from the boiling bowl where I've been cooking it. I just don't trust it won't break or crack or become something entirely different from what I want. I hope it doesn't get overcooked... But there's not much to change my pace now, so I have to go with what I got.

And what I got is this one little idea that might be opportune to have around. This is a part of the world I'm going to use to represent or, better, to remind me of all the world beyond me. It is primarily a glove slap, a reminder that the world is much, much bigger than all of these petty little troubles inside me.

I am thinking of it as some sanctuary of sanity where I can go and rest when I am too troubled inside. The Safe Port I need would be this one, though I've never found a permanent safe port for me, but this one, this one has to be the One Safe Port. It would have to be a place where Vesta can rule the place with her sterilizing rationalization, and where no Ersatz can enter. In a way this would just be my room, but it doesn't work that way, so this is one of the few reversed strings I have, where I would have to make my life to fit the creation. Finding the way to those peaks is difficult, for there is where I can find trances. Maybe it's a mile away from Ilium, in a way where scourgers and saboteers block my passage.

I've been having some dioramas already about a building on top of this hill, installed there for observation purposes. And now I think this fits well with these peaks, and as it's when I'm least troubled it's where I'm also more productive – so Hephaestus facilities might be around there too.

I just haven't decided yet on ther height of these mountains. Probably this would be the very one that hides Ilium from lazurian view, which is also one idea I've been having through the year, which is a chain of mountains that separates me from the rest of the world...

Of Hrungnir Species

 The most characterizing aspect of dealing with such problem as Hrungnir, is that I feel dozens of variations of it. If I eat I feel something, if I don't I feel something else. If I eat something in particular there's another discomfort or pain. If I eat a certain combination of food or then in a particular dose or order, I'll feel different side effects.

Luckily for a whole month now I've been feeling it very much weaker, thank you. Eating alone has been feeling like a nice treatment to my symptoms, even though I'm living to feed my stomach and I still get no weight at all...

But the point is, there are occasional Hrungnir appearances here and there. Thanks to these sporadic events, I've been getting more capable of discerning the differences while I have some bitter recalls of still having to face them.

There is one that makes me feel like abdominal muscles are twisting all around each other, and they're kind of bloated and yet empty – I call it the Wrapper. I feel another one that's similar but there are more contractions I feel my belly roaring – so that's Roarer. These two aren't necessarily dangerous, they sign incoming problems, but it's more sounds and slight disturbances, not exactly pain. These two following are my actual nightmares: Waver and Stinger. Waver is almost similar to Wrapper, but it's like colics and this one does affect my mood significantly. Stinger is like a very acute pain right there in my intestines. The mere emptiness of being some five hours without eating (or when I am going to sleep or get up in the morning), it's the feeling similar to hunger (though sometimes without appetite), the Hrungnir leader, and I'll call it the Void, and it's like a step above Wrapper and Roarer. If I let Void be in power for too long, all others can break loose and it's harder to defeat them, specially Waver (Stinger seems to come only in certain occasions, depending on something I've eaten).

It seems there are not much of a cure to this, as far as to this point. There's no weapon capable of putting them at bay, or poisoning them away. It's just constant work and vigilance, a repeated routine of slashing the incoming waves and working out the strategy of keeping the stronger Hrungnir leader in prison (always having a sandwich nearby). It's really been by keeping Void trapped that I can manage to make others more disoriented.

The problem, though, is that eating makes me feel sleepy and tired. I feel a level of fatigue that's unsurmountable and unbearable. I feel very, very dizzy and times passes by without the treasured enjoyment I seek. These utgard scourgers are also making it very hard to live by, but at least this is where I am still able to maintain some restrict discipline.

Of Khorkhoi and Yehren

 Though Vesta and Hephaestus founded a bureaucratic system that was aiding the development of Ilium, it was ill-used by Raseri, who was too unfamiliar with the codes and constitutions founded for the administration of the city. He was too dumb a creature to handle a statute filled with many minutiae.

The end of the year was approaching, and the I was very worried about it. The main problems I started having was how I felt I had such a huge chunk of my life wasted, as I couldn't handle all these problems already. If only I was a little more prepared, I wouldn't let myself be troubled by others. I was supposed to be much more mature and I was supposed to handle my feelings well. But then again, is maturity an ability not to feel hurt, or to prevent myself from letting my rage to hurt others? Still, I was supposed to be an adult already, not just a tall child with beard.

The fuss in the city brough a Zhàn group to investigate the place. There were permanent Zhàn watchtowers in these lands, and the arrival of the Zhàn watchguard was announced by the arrival of the baby-beast Khorkhoi, unleashed to the amusement of the imperial troops. Khorkhoi was bigger than usual, and an abscission demon surely had something to do with it. The beast was a really great menace to Raseri, as he wouldn't know how much the city would stand against the invasion of Ushag now with this mindless, chtonic creature running wild and destroying all in its way.

The creature was only tamed by Hiraeth, who arrived followed by Yehren. He wasn't one of the most powerful Zhàn scourgers, but he arrived earlier as he lived in a nearby Zhàn watchtower, where he made allegiance with the Ersatz clans, and he was an acquaintance of Avsky.

I think constantly that, as I lost so much of my time, I need to make up for it. And I see everything as pointless to bother, for I have to think, I've got to get ideas, I've got to learn and create. It's just too vicious and dangerous, because suddenly I realize I've been too derangedly obssessed with this shit. So I don't bother with learning car mechanics, or dancing, or just being with friends. I get really distant and it bothers me terribly, feeling barely able to talk with people. Hell, it gets to the point where even learning and creating is affected by this.

The obstinated search for something, let's say, above ordinary made me feel like I have to do just what makes me close to it. The part that makes me feel ashamed is that I end up actually wasting my time because of this extraordinarily restrictive indisposition and just do nothing, because I'm not doing it peacefully, or sincerely interested. It's somewhat of a still grieved attempt to prove my own worth.

Of vicious gamification

 I can't consistently foresee the consequences of my actions, but I can know when I spot some dangerous courses I've been tracking down, and they can bring me to dangerous abyssess. I have to be careful with my habits, for they can bring some hard consequences I'll have to deal with later in life.

So, though some of these trance powers I've sort of developed might also have been caused by the gamification process that has given me a new way to see the world, I think this new vision also has some vile consequences.

It’s similar issue, or at least I feel so, to the Mnemonic Waning (where my memory is under the expected eficiency), as it feels like a deficiency caused by my unfair habits of reaching for the aid of technology. It's always there, repairing our shortcomings and answering our doubts... even now, I'm using google constantly to bring me words I can't think by myself.

I am afraid I might have got too addicted to imagining huds and panels and visual interfaces to help my management skills. It can be seen here by the way I name and categorize every little goddamned thing, so it’s very hard for me to do some intuitive management again. I think this could become, if it already isn’t, harmful to me, as it spoiled me by being just way too helpful.

These auxiliary tools are too dangerous for anyone as undisciplined as me, or for anyone who just feels like ever in a hurry. Always with a too precious time in their hands that they need everything ready so quickly. Technology isn't vicious, we are just too untrained for we just can't handle ourselves around it without overabusing its kind help.

Of dry zephyrous springs

 Producing ideas seems to follow very similar patterns to any other form of admiinistrative businesses. Management and stocking of resources, for instance, are also a present issue I have to deal with. From time to time, I notice my stockade resources seems to start running short. There's a season of weak zephyrous harvest, and it affects the quantity and quality of my thoughts.

I get dry on inspiration, and I can sip no ideas from my mind. And the thirstier I get, the worst it is to keep trying to force the engine any further. There's nothing to say, and when I have no word is coming I keep writing down the word “quintessenceless”. Forcing my mind to work with such dry springs makes me feel very much anxious and frustrated.

It gets impossible to relax and concentrate. Whole nights come and go and no trance give its grace. When there's a moment that would in another time mean the approximation of a trance rain to spring life back in me, the only appearance is of something blank. It's like a dark-clouded storm that only delivers a harmless brizzle.

Though Raseri admited he couldn't rule Ilium by himself, and has given the Fire Ensemble the chance to rebuild Ilium, Hephaestus wasn't in contempt with the conditions. His working hours were too rigid, the approved projects were going through so much bureaucracy, and his productivity was at his worst.

In times like these, there's not much to do besides going for references, and so Hephaestus asked for Vesta to help him use the budget to rebuild his library. So I went for studies to fill myself again – watching movies and documentaries, reading books and articles, and also keeping introspective research and meditation to maintain all my feelings sorted out. I've just got to go around study, inquiring and searching the world for more and more.

That is, of course, if I have some natural willing and energy to do that. But I'm doing it just under orders of Vesta, who's still bound by Raseri's will. After all, he's got an army of his own, and his orders are to see Hepheastus help him make Lazuria burn.

Of darkened thresholds

 Something has just been stolen from me.

Though there ain't no wars like last year, boy I'm deepened in troubles again. Not being dominated by dark feelings, but I am now just out of positive ones. My flames are scattered, without resources, without approval. Vesta seemed to have traded Áine's position in the parlament for Raseri's. My insides are infested with greed, mediocrity, jealousy and selfishness. And I am but just accepting this, because there are no more flames inside me to fight them. Raseri is rising, and Vesta is watching Ilium falling in a dark economical period because of his political choices. She tried to warn him, but he wouldn't hear.

The waning of my flames is making me feel like my old self before I had myself enrolled in this mission. Unmotivated and powerless, without having anything to offer. Routes of trade are wearing off, and the isolation of the city is making it lose touch with the rest of the world. That would mean Raseri losing his throne to Ushag, who's eager to invade Ilium, whose walls are growing weaker by the day.

These are those sad moments when we feel we just don't care. And then we start noticing we don't even care about not caring. And I don't know how I am supposed to handle that. Suffering is a sign that things aren't going well, but at least that still shows some attachment. But this... this is a sign the end is too nigh.

This is but a feeling of suspension. This is just a transition, for I know I can't sustain myself in this state for too long. The flames are united in a small room, and between them the air is filled with fear and doubt, but Ilium has seen worst days. Either every dream of mine is over, or then I'll use this crisis to go through another death, another renovating death. And the blackest of deaths hitherto meant being followed by the highest flights.

And thus I stand in the threshold for a possible new self. These demands from life are forcing me to be more than what I am. I guess I had it wrong it would be easier to write or create as time went by, as it is obviously getting every time harder. Life is forcing me to recover so much of what I've lost and still losing. But I don't want my souvenirs and sculptures falling behind on the road. I can't let Ilium to fall like this. All my sensitivity to ideas, all the reddened enthusiasm I used to have are but so faint now, but this is another decisive moment of truth...

The drums roll...

Raseri called the Fire Ensemble for a council meeting.

Of change and growth

 The turmoil inside my head makes me unable to see anything clearly. A sudden flood brought everything to become washed by a muddy mess. The abscission demons are turning Ilium into a barren land. My steps are unclear and often I find myself hurting myself by stepping on some unearthed trauma. A group appears through the gray mist. One of those traumas is the fear that I've reached all I will ever accomplish. A group of Hakr's scouters are already here.

Being desperate to prove my own worth, I've been trying to find, anywhere I can, a place where I'd feel I could still try something different to explore and find something refreshingly new that I could invest my time on. Unfortunately I started finding myself unable to feel comfortable in any new world. For I came back to the old one I've found it hollow. I couldn't belong to this world anymore. I was caught in-between worlds.

Raseri wasn't like Ushag, who just wanted to destroy Ilium, for Raseri had his own plans for the city, but he was enraged with the realization he couldn't take Ilium where he wanted. It wasn't prepared for a new industrial system. And even the old one was too outdated and the knowledge acquired wasn't enough to work as a gravity center anymore. He knew Ushag would be much too pleased to know about this.

So I couldn't change and I couldn't grow (and seemed to have lost what I initially had). Now I am very confused, for I don't know what to do, or where to go. I don't know if, in order to free myself I have to change or grow. One very important detail about this is that I am not sure how to tell them apart. Not sure how to tell when I'm changing who I am and when I am just expanding my essence to new horizons. Not sure if this new industrial systems would help bring this renovation to Ilium.

One thing is sure, I can't stagnate. But considering the powers I've been losing, I'm retreating, receding, regressing. I'm shrinking instead of growing. Stiffening instead of changing. My days are being a ghastly imprisonment inside my nightmares where I fall back in the netherworld of frozen dreams.

Of swollen tumors

 My business is being buried down. My dreams and my joys are being forced to be replaced by some, say, survival skills. Common world issues are there and this time they are requiring effort and energy from me, too much effort and too much energy. So much that I am unable to keep along with my secret dreams and wonderings, at least in a pace that I feel that I need to have.

It feels like I have two lung-like organs, and one of them is growing too big for this simple ribcage. It's outgrowing the one that I need to heal and to make it prosper. But I feel the pain of the pressure, the pain of something being slowly smashed, slowly squashed to death.

As I think of the future, I just see this survival skills needing constant improvement. The more and more I'm given more responsibilities and more of my time has to be dedicated towards more things that I'm told to have as I tread my life. I see it occupying more and more of my attention.

Is it worthy of my time to change my lifestyle to look more like a proper adult, going all about numbers and profit and overall being so proudly busy? Isn't there a way to manage my dreamy, artistic side with that without so much conflict?

Of jealousy and dreaded sharing

 Being stolen of what I had so precious to me, I'm bare and unclad of defense. More than ever others look powerful to me, enhanced by my own sensation of lowered power. I feel like I've got nothing, like I know nothing. Could this be what Socrates meant? Could this be the feeling that the only thing I know is that I know nothing? That the more I learn, the less I feel I've learned? But what the hell is worth such an unrewarding paradox?

Could it be that we get less cocksure about ourselves when we eventually understand the lesser and ignoble feelings other have mentioned as despicable and we notice we aren't safe against them, and so understand them as being part of our simple humanity? I have to fully comprehend that Ilium is probably dictatorial and segregative by keeping Ersatz away. By some reason I can't still comprehend, they get their enantiodromic power by being subjugated. Strange this force that is in the aid for the lesser ones...

I've always had the notion that we just feel hurt for things that matter to us, things we love (or feel too attached to them, or feeling like we're entitled to them). We just feel those petty feelings when we feel threatened. The more we get the very kernel of our foundations threatened, the crazier and insane we get. Murderous thoughts are born this way, I guess, when we are bothered by the very existence of the threatening subject for our foundations.

Don't worry, there's no desire of murder inside me. I've just experienced very deep feelings of jealousy and something that reminds me of usual hipster behavior of avoiding mainstream. As I feel this strange desperate need to seek for something that can only be mine and that will redirect resources back to Ilium, I've been torn from my connection with my flames, like I just had been told I'm not a good person at all. Vesta is the one least affected by this, as she still has her role in the parlament, but Raseri is already having the majority of the parliament on his side, and he's leading the investiment way too much on lazurian matters, while Vesta is trying to turn that investment again to attracting traders again back in.

The thing is, I still need something to protect me, something that is just mine and no one else can't ever have it. My creative power would be it, but then I was suddenly finding myself without it. Hephaestus has had all his apparels confiscated, all his books burned. Vesta couldn't believe Raseri could be so stupid. Ilium was void of its main specialty. No trances, no delight of inspiration and creation. I am left both filthy and empty.

Of figment and fraud

Some abscission demons are being found, and here's one that fortifies my fear of being left behind. For its through competition that we are forced to set ourselves in comparison to the others, with has always been the main trigger of my distress, along with approval. If only I was successful I probably wouldn't complain too much about it, but I'm a little too much like Bernard Marx from Brave New World.

Once that demon is set free, it's very hard to look back at me again through isolated inspection. It's a new world of difficulty when I'm locked towards a very competent competitor. Lazurian reigns got unbelievably powerful, now featuring also another source of gravity, one who quite similar to the one I had Hephaestus crafting. My own strengths are also theirs now and I am feeling outgunned. Mercants are finding more profit by trading with Lazuria instead of Ilium.

So whenever feeling threatened, I feel a tendency to resort to the qualities I know that can keep me protected. I like reading, I like studying and learning. But I've been getting ashamed of showing any sign that I might not have studied or read so hard as people even believe me to. I am ashamed of not knowing some word or concept, ashamed of doing something wrong. I am bad at so much already (especially terrible at any social skill), that I'd hope I'd be really good at this at least. But this new lazurian gravity engine has been proven to be improved a thousandfold over mine. If only Ilium wasn't such a corruptible city, always involved with struggles with Ersatz, with bellic investments taking over academic ones.

My shadow reflection robbed me from this special quality I used to have. I'm left with wondering about the consistency of my own so-far perceived reality. It suddenly seems as if there's no authenticity to my own essence, for it can't compete with Lazurian forces. Raseri got into Vesta's parlament and he's gaining power and approval of Ilium's population, and Vesta is worried about his growing popularity.

Of reality-bending lies for survival

 The human mind is a fragile but tricky thing. It needs too little for its own stability to come aground. Whenever the weak button is found (innocence, indulgence or narcissistic insecurity), and hell breaks loose, the reality can twists into an unbearable situation, and I see how the mind strives to do anything to convince itself of any lie that will help the bearing of the situation.

As eminent threats can knock me off from my sane self, and that it can take me to behave chaotically, like a man running desperate with a hive on his head and a cloud of angry bees chasing him, I know I try to do anything to not have any threat left. The first option is, obviously, to defeat it in clear terms.

When I can't do anything about an uncomfortable situation, I am already defeated and will then try to ignore it. If it will not let go of my mind, as if being a very painful sting, I'll see my mind trying to pull some very dirty tricks to convince itself against those threats.

What actually bothers me about these lies to facilitate my life is that it makes me a very hypocrite human being. This is no word from Vesta, this is another one in charge of these orders. And I can't let that happen, there can be no saboteers. I can't just go and hate someone for flaws I pretty sure I have myself. I can't go around and criticize people to lower them just to feel better about myself. It's a shot that will only come back to me. The human mind is not just a fragile thing. With the wrong drive, it also seems to think just too shortly ahead.

Of (opened) Abscission Arks

 This time of the year is usually when the Reaping happens, and when I sense this time approaching is when I am recalled to my Abscission Arks. They are where I store all my doubts, traumas and insecurities. Getting them closed means I'm okay with them, but this time of the year it seems to be when they're opened.

Apparently what I have to do is to go around finding all the demons that broke loose from their arks. They give power to my enemies as all these personal, romantic, social, artistic, professional and existencial insecurities that I have are brought up and flood Ilium from its protection.

It's by going after them, picturing and visualizing them and making my own trial of inspection for every problem that I can find peace again. Otherwise, these mischevous beings will keep pestering me, clouding up, clogging up my thoughts, and preventing me from having acchieving any productivity at all.

The Arks are stored in Ilium, in the depths of a hidden cave guarded by Trygve's troops. When he's short of power, the guard lowers and it's easy for them to be stolen, and that's what happened. Maybe the power from these dark spirits diminished as I grew as a person this year, and when I make mistakes their locks get weaker, but even if they break loose and there's the growing intensity of Zhàn's repression every year, this isn't much of a terrible war as last year (in fact, here my second world war wasn't more or even as savage as the first one).

There's no denying my Abscission Arks are a literal copy of Pandora's Box, but the final result is how it suddenly became similar, and it was not my intent from the start. I actually had it first called Abscission Well, and when I thought of it being like Arks I didn't even think about it. Just now when I thought of it being a nice way to represent my need to deal with this issue of my problems, being trapped and guarded and now loose again, that I noticed I was just using the same formula.