Dear Readers

Hi friend. Please – this is not something to passively read. This is me speaking directly TO you, and I’d love to hear a response. When you get to the end, please leave a comment or contact me, even if only a few words.

I see many of random visitors here, but 100 or so of you have subscribed, and many of you have participated with comments on the posts or emails. THANK YOU. It is seriously gratifying to explore and shape ideas with other people.

The Beginning

In June 2020, I wrote myself a note, on paper (below), that I really needed to start writing. More specifically, I needed to explore my feelings and ideas. It’s funny, we believe we know ourselves, but when we start to poke around, we realize what mystery we are – all of us. We are pure potential, constantly expressing ourselves in relationship with the environment, which is also in constant flux. We are verbs, not nouns. Our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors evolve in ways that are both familiar and peculiar. We are in concert with all other things – always. Writing has helped me see this so clearly, and yet, there is so much more to explore and understand. There is no end.

Connecting With You

While the primary purpose of my writing is to continue this exploration, I recognize a greater parallel cause, to help other people do the same. While all of our stories and circumstances are vastly different, we share a baseline experience – what it’s like to be human – what it’s like to have worries, and dreams, and frustrations. But most optimistically, we can share what it’s like to feel at peace with all of it. I know this is possible. This is what I wish for a maximum amount of people, not because I personally have anything crazy to profess, but because I believe anyone can discover this through their own self inquiry, and serve as an example for other people to do the same. Good ideas spread on their own merit, without any single person being responsible. People can be their own gurus. I simply want to be a helpful signpost in support of this, and encourage other people to pay it forward.

What’s Next?

An Antirebellion of Sincerity

I have a vision to form a collection of writers who share some basic values, basically, those who speak honestly, carefully, thoughtfully, and kindly. Personally, I am trying every day to live more closely to these values, because I believe they help foster a good world. This is inspired from an essay by David Foster Wallace, which I recently posted about here. I haven’t figured out how this project will work, but as a start, I’d love to connect with anyone who feels affinity to these values, and wants to share their thoughts. As long as you approach the world with kind sincerity, then anything you have to share will be valuable to someone.

Sticking to My Questions

Humans have got it pretty good today, we live in a time of extraordinary abundance, but, psychologically speaking, I believe we’re still in the wilderness. Statistically the world is better off than it’s ever been, yet, depression and anxiety are as intense as ever, if not more. Why?

I believe three things:

  1. There are truths about life that affect us all equally
  2. We all get stuck in very common places
  3. There are very common ways to feel at ease

Lately, for instance, I am focusing on a simple question. Why do we work so much? It’s a fascinating and complicated answer I’ll be writing more about soon. Also, sarcasm. When is it straight-up unhelpful? Finally, optimism, how it can seem naive but is often the complete opposite – highly intelligent and strategic.

My goal is to keep exploring all of these things – truths, cautions, and exploring aspects of relief. They all work together and affect one another. This is a major framework of my articles.

Everything is OK

I want there to be at least one single page on the internet that can help people in a time of personal crisis. The internet can feel like a big cold machine of bits and algorithms. I want to make sure people can find an actual person who has left an emergency kit to find your way when feeling lost. I will continue taking care of this page. After all and I do sincerely believe that everything is OK.

Please Share Feedback

Let me know if any of this content has helped you in the past. Let me know how things have improved. Let me know if you want to be involved writing, even if it’s something very simple. Let me know what is really bothering you lately and if it’s hard to see a solution. If this is the first article you’ve read here – simply say hello. Any or all of the above. Please share a comment or contact me direct if you prefer privacy.

If you aren’t up for sharing, or are simply feeling like a passive reader at the moment – I get it 🙂

Regardless, thanks for reading and exploring. More to come.


14 responses to “Dear Readers”

  1. This is a beautiful idea! I found your website a month or so ago on a dark day. It lifted me up and helped refocus me on the basic core of goodness and beauty in this world and the active role I play in creating my life. Thank you! I look forward to the content that pops up in my cluttered inbox. I’d be delighted to contribute content or collaborate in some way. Best, Cathy

    • Cathy, thanks so much for sharing. If you are open to writing a small reflection of how you’re feeling, your frustrations, and feelings, and the differences you’re experiencing along your path, I would be happy to share it. It might help you and others. Zero pressure, though. Offer stands for if/when it felt right. Regardless – thanks again.

  2. I found this blog while looking for answers to understand my own relationship break up!

    I myself and not a writer but there were something so comforting reading words of someone else’s that mirrored my feelings almost exactly

    For me, that has been the blessing of this blog to find common ground with others and possibly understand myself a little more in the process

    • Caz – this comment is so great to read. Very glad this helped you right when you needed it, and I hope it continues to do the same for you and others. If you are ever interested in sharing more with others, reach out any time.

  3. Hi Braindump 🙂

    Do you have a (-nother) name?

    In one of the early articles I wrote about what I now refer to as “irrational media”, I warned about “one size fits all” sites … and “braindump” (if it means anything at all) seems quite one-size fits-all to me.

    But maybe that actually does work for some people.

    🙂 Norbert

    • Norbert, yes I go by Jay – great to meet you. To your point, as a human trying to explore my mind “brain dump” seemed apt when I started this. But reflecting on that recently, there are specific values coming into clearer view. I may transition to “antirebel.org”, which I take to mean sincerity, kindness, intelligent optimism, and nonreactivity. Or I might use that site instead for a collection of writers. We’ll see. In the meantime, I’ll continue dumping my brain. Thanks very much for the comment.

  4. Hi Jay, this is a great idea! I too am a fan. Not in a weird stalkery way – more as an enthusiast. One of your blogs certainly helped me at a difficult moment after a good friends cancer diagnosis. And I firmly believe in the power of an optimistic ‘everything will be ok’. The ‘everything’ being your own person and then what we can each do radiating out from there.
    Living in a place that’s suffered earthquakes, wild fires, terrorist attacks and having survived much personal tragedy and loss, I feel I can speak of the power of hope to help us through our darkest times. Finding peace within is something I can constantly strive to search for, often fall short of, but never give up trying.
    What you are doing is valuable and worthwhile and I look forward to seeing how continues. Thank you.

    • Really glad to hear how it helped Justine. I’d love to hear an update on how your perspective evolves as time goes on. And of course, wish you continued presence with your friend, which much mean the world to both of you right now.

  5. I’ve really enjoyed your writing and I feel like we share a lot of similar ideas. I’ve been longing for a community that bonds not over identity or fandom of something — not that those communities don’t have their benefits — but over shares values and principles. I think the community you are fostering here has the potential to be exactly that.

    I used to write professionally. It was very much new media type stuff, where my bosses were chiefly concerned with clicks and visits and ad revenue over creativity or quality writing. I got to be creative and express myself, which I loved, but it just wasn’t a priority for our operation. I really, really want (er, need) to get back into writing regularly. It’s good for my mind and my soul. I’ve really been struggling to find the motivation to do it or inspiration for what to write about. I’d love to be a part of this experiment you’re thinking about running. I think it could help fill a lot of the holes I’ve been finding in myself in.

    • ” I’ve been longing for a community that bonds not over shared values and principles.”

      I am exactly in the same boat. I am still figuring out the best way to put this together. It think what I’m going to do first is put together a very succinct list of guiding principles – some kind of founding document that any participants can roughly abide by.

      “I’d love to be a part of this experiment you’re thinking about running. I think it could help fill a lot of the holes I’ve been finding in myself in.”

      By all means, feel free to email me a list of topics you’d be interested in diving into. Happy to read/review/discuss/post here. I will email you to get the discussion going.

      – Jay

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