“Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dream.” -Paulo Coelho
We’ve all made fear-based decisions in our lives. Fear of the unknown. Fear of the unexpected. Fear of death. Fear of failure. In any decision there’s always a fear of something.. and that’s what most of human lives are based on. What we don’t realize is that fear is nothing but an illusion. An illusion created by our minds that prevents us from taking control of our destiny.
For as long as we’ve known society has maintained this limited structure of what our lives are supposed to be. You go to school. Finish college. Then get a dreadful 9-5 job that you’re stuck with for decades. Live in an expensive house, buy an expensive car, wear expensive clothes, and attempt to please people you don’t like. Then you retire in your 60s and only when you’re old and only then will you be free to do whatever you want. Then you wonder if you ever even lived. Then you think about all those dreams and aspirations you had when you were younger. Did you do what makes you happy? Are you happy with the person you’ve become? With the kind of life you live? Did you take enough risks? Or did you do what you were told because it guaranteed comfort and security in your life?
Around Christmas time I had an epiphany.. I came to realize that this is what I want and need to do: FOLLOW MY DREAMS. FOLLOW MY BLISS.
My plan was to transfer to a university to finish my last two years of college to get a BA degree. I wanted to do some photography on the side and maybe travel during breaks. But mainly focus on getting that degree. That sheet of paper that says “Hey look I guess I did something with my life?”. Because that’s what everyone told me I should do. Because it’s a system that everyone follows and society has accepted it as the common path towards “success”. Then I found myself asking this question (again): Is this what you really want? The answer is a solid: NO.
I want nothing more than to travel around the world and take pictures. At the same time I want to inspire people through my photography and words. I want to help them, heal them, teach them, and share with them the infinite love that I have for the universe that is nurtured by my soul each day that passes by.
I will be working on a photography project, The Pursuit of Satori, this year. What this whole project is about is this:
Do you know that unexplainable feeling you get.. some sort of natural high? When you look at everything and it all seems surreal. And you feel like you’re in a movie. You can see and feel everything but it’s as though you can’t be touched. That feeling of pure bliss, with the perfect song, and the perfect scene, and the perfect people. When you feel the most alive. Such a feeling that moves you, and renders you speechless. At that moment you are dazed and you wouldn’t choose to be anywhere in the universe but where you are. That infinite feeling, in those fleeting infinite moments. The influx of thoughts, emotions, attachments suddenly replaced by an arising of inner spaciousness. No mind. Just universal bliss. That sudden fleeting moment of enlightenment called Satori.
Through my love for photography I found an outlet where I can take that infinite Satori moment, hold it in my hands, and show it to people who may or may not know that feeling and be moved by it. I want people to see what I see whenever I have my eyes open or closed. I want them to feel at least a bit of what I feel or what others feel in that infinite moment because I know everyone has those moments, they just forget about them. They don’t savor each millisecond enough. Maybe because they are late for a meeting. Maybe because their child spilled hot chocolate on the couch. Maybe because they realized that they are a day late with paying their bills. Maybe because the mundane routines of life interrupts us from feeling the capacity of what human beings are able to feel. Nevertheless, this is why I chose photography. Because I want that infinite moment to be frozen and caught in an image. No matter how many years pass and people forget about their infinite moments, at least they’ll have it in photographs.
Three weeks from now I will be backpacking through Costa Rica and Panama with a close friend. Then in November I will go on a solo backpacking trip through Thailand, then after I will visit my homeland, the Philippines for two months. What comes after that lies on the flow of the universe. As much as possible.. I will live life day by day, moment by moment.
Through this project I will meet strangers and capture them in their purest state during their moments of bliss. I truly believe that this project within its nature has the capability to enlighten people through new eyes even through a brief moment or throughout their entire existence.
Jump into the abyss and follow your bliss.