May 29th, 2013
Instructor Tera Martin
Contents of An Empty Room
Life, in the desire for possessing an unbent will for achievement and material prosperity has crippled us of our own emotions. To think like a machine is to feel like one. A slaving regiment, dictating peoples lives, telling you what to do, what to think or what to feel, creates inauthentic and plastic humans . It is a reflection of someone who's been crafted by the dogma of society and the result of a diminishing voice. The most important facet of life is in the vitality of human emotion and the connections we create with others. The common illusion of today which sells us a defective figure in how to attain bliss is misadvertised by thought that the sweat on our brow is convertible to the currency of happiness. This is true in regard that the yield of hard-work can be the gain in financial asset however, when our incentive is in the value of money and not in the content of our work we become disconnected with what creates us as individuals. In the past year, I have witnessed the deterioration of my character and changing in composition of my personality, as well as the compromise for my sense of worth. The irony is placed in that this was my own bidding. In the creative suffering found by a desperate position for desire in change, I placed myself in the threshold of a vulnerable condition. For the approximate time of one year, I've lived within the confine of my car witnessing the underworld in the community of homeless. It sparked curiosity for the inception to the conditions of being homeless, which many including myself faced. The following data is the collective of interview reports, data statistics, and related academic journals, placed in a formalized report on the influences of happiness and the compound of achievement by desire.
Some argue that happiness is not proprietary and that is it circumstantial only by result of external influences. The stories of neglected individuals with troubling pasts, ending in a life of sorrow and misery are far too abundant. A life wasted, with potential unachieved and dreams unfulfilled, many blame their former upbringing as a scapegoat to issues faced. During a study conducted in 2012 by Dr. Nandi Karabi as part of a research survey with her UCLA affiliate, it was found that among the total of 350 homeless students between ages 18 to 25, 44 percent had a history of foster care placement (Karabi 7). During the personal interviews conducted on homeless students attending Cabrillo College, it was found that six of the nine, credited their current condition to unfortunate circumstances that were latent in their past. Though I've never heard of a whistling slave, it can be argued that success is by design and happiness in some effect, by choice. We live in a vulnerable world, one that weighs your worth by the substance of personal achievement. With this comes intense pressures from the surrounding community to maintain a high standing in performance, to preserve ones own security in the future. As part of a “TED” talk titled “The power of vulnerability”, Brene Brown shares insight from her academic research, characterizing the ability to empathize, love and belong. In it, she states that “We form a coping mechanism and selectively numb our emotions suitable to desired or undesired feelings that compliment our daily lives” (TED Talk, Brene Brown). Feelings of regret, shame, fear, grief or disappointment accompanying a prickling mental association with the past, creates a desire to block out those negative emotions. However as part of Brown's research, it was her finding that when we selectively numb, we inadvertently numb other facets which create the full spectrum of human emotion including joy, gratitude or happiness as well. This can lead to the aforementioned feelings of misery as we search for purpose and meaning, reverting back to a vulnerable state. Passion and...
Cited: Daniels, Judy. "Humanistic Interventions For Homeless Students: Identifying And Reducing Barriers To Their Issues." Journal Of Humanistic Education & Development 33.4 (1995):164. Academic Search Complete. Web. 21 May 2013.
Hallett, Ronald E. "Homeless: How Residential Instability Complicates Students ' Lives." About Campus 15.3 (2010): 11-16. Academic Search Complete. Web. 21 May 2013.
Hudson, Angela L, and Karabi Nandy. "Comparisons Of Substance Abuse, High-Risk Sexual Behavior And Depressive Symptoms Among Homeless Youth With And Without A History Of Foster Care Placement." Contemporary Nurse: A Journal For The Australian Nursing Profession 42.2 (2012): 178-86. Academic Search Complete. Web. 18 May 2013.
Smith, Adam. "Cognitive Empathy And Emotional Empathy In Human Behavior." Psychological Record 56.1 (2006): 3-21. Academic Search Complete. Web. 25 May 2013.
“TED.” TED Ideas Worth Spreading. TED Talks, 14 June 2010. Web. 22 May 2013.
Washington, Philisie Starling. "Homeless Youth: A Concept Analysis." Journal Of Community Health Nursing 28.3 (2011): 168-78. Academic Search Complete. Web. 20 May 2013.
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