Thursday, March 19, 2009

Born Again (Synthesis Note [26])

Song of the Moment: "Born Again" V feat. Jill Scott (lyrics below)

As I've moved toward self evolution and away from compulsions which don't serve either of my lives (1st or 2nd), I've begun to expand my online presence outside the walls of SL. Yesterday, I was playing around with my new twitter subscription and one of my followers posted a URL for an article about SL ( The article itself was not all that intriguing, as I find most people outside of the grid really don’t understand what is happening here for us residents. It was a comment posted by a user however, that threatened to take me back in my progress of integrating online with RL. He/she posted quite judgmentally: "I guess when you don't have a real-life you have to make one up online and pay for it on top of it... Alot of sad individuals out there.  I count my blessings everyday that I have a good job, good friends and good family and not have to resort to a fantasy world to fulfill my happiness." 

It is comments like these that chase me into thoughts of guilt and shame about my relationship with SL, which I've battled for most of my time here. Thoughts of being "less than" because of fear about what "outsiders" would think of my second life. In my self-condemnation after reading this post, I failed to acknowledge that the person writing 1) posted to an online forum; 2) anonymously; 3) in an effort to be acknowledged in his/her online presence. 

How hypocritical I finally realized!

I've focused so much effort and attention on making the fragments that are my first and second life a singularity. The irony is, every aspect of my RL is compartmentalized and before SL, I always thought this was healthy.  As I was chatting with my SL friend Reflection Freenote, he put it this way: "yes, it is dissociative in the moment, but the overall fabric is maintained through a sense of acceptance of fragmentation, and the awareness that all the pieces have of all the others:))"

Yeah! What he said! (grin) In recent weeks, I've let go of a lot... with SL on the top of my list of things NOT to do despite its place in the corner of my heart as a "thing to hold on to." I think I've been focused on letting go of the wrong thing. It is the judgments, criticisms and self-doubt that no longer serve me... in any life. I don’t expect my Caucasian friends to fully understand my experience as an African-American, (even when they try too) but I still love them, and don’t judge them for it. Why should I expect any different in my relationships with offline friends relative to my SL?

SL is just another source of love, support, self-fulfillment and connectedness. Acu was created in my RL likeness (personality wise [grin]), and although she is able to explore parts of me that may be unavailable RL, I always reserve the right to create that same aspect of me in my RL. It is all love…, a closed cycle, complete, perfect with both ups and downs. I envision the symbol for infinity turned up…cycling up and down to return up again, never ending..... 
the valleys …
and mountain tops…
and dives to the valley again... 
Blessing each experience 
As birth, life, death, resurrection... Born Again.

With love peace and blessings INFINATELY…

"Born Again" by V. feat. Jill Scott

I'm Born Again
Your Living Water never ends
I'm Born Again
Your Living Water never ends

I used to be so sad
but now a days I bathe inside your love
I can't get away
My eyes now tell a story
how lonely days no longer rule my life
now that you're with me
Never forget that day
I first decided, said "how 'bout it?" to myself
and took a leap of faith
No disappointments today
'cuz everything I've ever wanted
is inside your rain.

I'm Born Again (Baptized by your spirit)
Your Living Water (It's because of you)
I'm Born Again (but now I can feel it)
Your Living Water never ends

You made me change my ways
and I'm so glad I found someone
who can quench my thirst.
Had problems before you came in my life
now the problems in my life 
are washed away
A new beginning you have given me
all sins are forgiven, evening if I'm not worthy
Tranquility feels so good to me
Drenched by your majesty, I'm soak and wet


(J. Scott interlude to fade)

Captured...I'm captured

Write it down(so lost) rest 
Page for page (this existence) 
(I am so lost inside this ... miracle)
and by no measure (capture this) can I comprehend delicious-THIS
(Create me all over again just to experience this)

This experience ...captured and I come (so satisfying)
I am so emoted...let me KNOW

Book after book could not possibly fit
(Can't even begin) capture this love
I would start all over again...

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

SL/RL Synthesis Note (25): The Resurrection

Song of the Moment:  "My Life" Mary J. Blige  (Yamama’nym Remake)

In my life, I’ve tried to live authentically. To be the best I could be and to live by the creed “do the right thing.” When I found SL, I discovered a place to be “inauthentic,” and explore sides of me I had not previously examined or entertained. Having reached what I thought was the top of the mountain, I leaped from the peaks deep into the valley like a droplet racing the waterfall down hill. For more than a year I immersed myself in this world swimming among others, exploring the depths of my soul. Here I  discovered ocean trenches: places so deep that I felt my life had imploded…

I have often joked about the idea of my Second Life being an addiction. In-world the word is thrown about casually and usually in jest. I realized that I spent an extraordinary amount of time logged in, but shook it off as an earned indulgence for the hectic RL I was living. Slowly I pulled away from the monotony spending less time away from home, then at work, then at my church and with friends. I’d log on, meet up with online friends who were doing the same thing and enjoy exploring the grid, and my inner most fantasies. At some point, however,  I realized that I needed to integrate my 1st and 2nd lives and invited my RL husband to join me in an effort to synthesize, but even that did not slow my free fall. There were aspects of my SL that I wanted to keep to myself…my escape and refuge.

…and then one day I stopped, looked around and realized that I had forgotten my way home. At that moment, I realize that in my seclusion, it was dark and I became afraid that I might not make it back. For the next year, I struggled against the water to swim upstream, desperate, tired and afraid. I wanted to go back to the peak, to climb out of the rabbit hole. I asked myself, “What is it that keeps me here?” I realized that when I wasn’t logged in, I wanted to be in-world. My thoughts kept me longing for my next SL adventure and during especially stressful times I felt agitated and irritable if unable to access my special, private space. Logging in was a relief…a release.

When finally I made that realization, I also accepted that I was lost. Addiction at its core is about isolating and guarding compulsive activity against the other aspects of one’s life. Overcoming it, means releasing the anxieties and frustrations locked inside the habit and mastering rather than suppressing them…it is resurrecting the abandoned self and creating a healthy marriage with the isolated self…reclaiming the isolated self back into the mainstream of one’s identity.

…but how did I get here in the first place? If I were able to master my fears, frustrations and anxieties I wouldn’t be in this predicament!

…and so with no plausible idea for how to get back to the peak, and unsuccessful in my efforts to swim upstream

I Surrender

… and ask that something greater than “I” take over…and in that release, I am flowing, freely embracing the current which cycles me through the crashing tides to a gentle, restful stream which nurtures me. In my open admission and voice, people in RL and SL come to my side to offer support, reassurance and comfort…divinely guided to my path to assist me in this journey. We assist one another, and grow…”flow” together.

…and in that space of quiet contemplation and open space, I rediscover who I am and begin to move toward a rebirth,

…finding rest in the SYNERGY.

In love…Bless XOXO

"My Life" Mary J. Blige
(Yamama’myn Remake)

Life can be only what you make it
When you're feelin’ down
You should never fake it
Say what's on your mind
And you'll find in time
That all the negative energy
It would all cease

And you'll be at peace with yourself
You won't really need no one else
Except for the man up above
Because He'll give you love

If you looked in my life
And see what I've seen...
If you looked in my life
And see what I've seen...
My life, my life, my life

[Verse 2]
Take your time
Baby don't you rush a thing
Don't you know, I know
We all are struggling
I know it is hard
But we will get by
And if you don't believe in me
Just believe in "He"

Cause He'll give you peace of mind
Yes He will
And you'll see the sunshine
For real, yes you would
And you'll get to free your mind
And things will turn out fine
Oh, I know that things will turn out fine
Yes they would, yes they would

[Chorus to Music interlude]
  (In the Sunshine)

All you gotta do is take your time,
And you will see the sunshine
One day at a time
Then you will see the sunshine
If you take it one day at a time
If you look into my life


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