my name is rocky. i was born in san francisco in 1985 to an austrian mother and a brazilian father. i spent my childhood moving back and forth between austria and california and ended up going to high school and college in austria.
music to me is about celebration. no moping! i enjoy music that expresses intense emotions, whether that be joy or rage. i wanna be moved. in general my music is there to remind me and the world that nothing is as big a deal as we make it seem. singing a happy little ditty about how much i hate everything is my way of not allowing myself to take myself all too seriously.
life is fascinating in all its highs and lows. everything strives towards balance. you can only experience as much joy as you can experience pain. if you’re suffering, consider yourself developing potential for future joy. if you’re happy, enjoy every moment as if it were your last. don’t get attached. everything is changing. always has been, always will.
shut up and dance!
Over the course of the last few years I’ve made some interesting discoveries about life.
Essentially what it comes down to, is the importance of having faith; in believing that things will be good. The future is impossible to predict. There are simply too many factors converging, causing unpredictable outcomes. I don’t ‘know’ if it’ll all be good, but I know that when I feel good everything is easier, and if you ever observe a happy person and an unhappy person you will quickly notice that A more good things happen to the happy person and B that happy people will generally be happy independently of their circumstances, while unhappy people will always find something to complain about.
Everything I know about the world is determined by what I’ve experienced, how I have learned to perceive things and what things I perceive as a result. All the thoughts that I have are there because my brain is reorganizing its perceptions — or rather its interpretations of those perceptions — and drawing conclusions based on patterns that it has learned. My perception is very selective, my interpretations are entirely subjective, and when I remember things I only remember parts of what I interpreted. This means that the level of abstraction and distortion between what actually happens in the world and what I end up learning is so high, that I cannot simply trust my brain.
Language is a great example. I knew a couple that would constantly fight and make up. Almost every time the problem was misunderstanding and miscommunication. One person has learned to use words one way, but the other person has learned to understand words in a slightly different way. This is an unavoidable challenge in our complex world. The big problem is when people interpret something incorrectly and forget that they could easily be wrong because they’re unaware of some critical details. We cannot perceive everything that has brought about a situation. When we begin blindly trusting our interpretations of the world and reacting to them things get very difficult very fast.
When we interact with one another honesty is very important. But what I think is even more important is clarity. I can be as honest as I like, but what good is it if the person misunderstands what I’m saying? If I’ve made sure I know what I want to say, then I also want the other to know what it is I want to say. If I’m just thinking out loud, then I want to make sure the other person knows I’m not claiming to know. Reversely, when someone else says something I don’t like, I ask whether I understood them correctly and try to find out why they said it before I let it upset me.
I cannot simply trust my brain.
If I cannot trust my brain then I can chose to believe what makes sense to my brain, or not. If what makes sense to my brain is that bad things, which I cannot control will happen, it will make me unhappy. I just remind myself that I don’t have all the facts and go ahead and believe whatever makes me happy. There is no sense in worrying about anything. You simply do what you can. Of course this doesn’t mean you can be stupid, but if you know you can’t do anything then worrying will do nothing but drain you of the energy you need to do what you CAN do.
If you’d like to read the long version and my responses to emails people have sent me about all this, please go to http://www.rockyleon.com/how-to-be-happy.