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It’s been about two weeks since I wrote my last post (that’s bad considering I just started with the blog), but they were two busy and tough weeks. I even had to make a very hard decision (concerning my current relationship)… and I learned one thing: when you are at peace you’ve encountered the right solution.

Reaching a conclusion was difficult; I spent countless hours talking to friends, searching on Google, but no one had the answers I really wanted to hear… until I listened to myself. Is it really that hard to think for ourselves? It seems like the answer is YES.

Nowadays we’ve become so lazy at thinking that we’ve even lost our common sense. We’ve gotten to the point of suing beer companies because those sexy women in tropical settings don’t appear in front of our eyes when we get drunk (http://www.the-injury-lawyer-directory.com/ridiculous_lawsuits.html ). Sadly, even Google has become a better advisor than our heads or hearts.

What’s most worrisome is our tendency to follow a path that has been “imposed” by our environment. In the case of most Western cultures this path measures success against money standards and social standards such as making good money and having nice kids, etc. Certainly having a beautiful family, and a well-paying job is amazing. The problem is when we compromise honesty, justice, time, etc., to achieve the standard of “making good money”; or when we marry / have children irresponsibly without understanding the sacrifices and life changes required to enter such a commitment. Instead of success, we can end up with corruption, crime, and dysfunctional families.

But after these few days, I’ve discovered that (to me) success is measured by a particular state of mind: PEACE.

And it isn’t only our culture that can lead us astray. Institutions such as organized religion can also numb our minds with the excuse that it is “necessary” in order to have faith. We are smart enough to figure out what is ethical, and to solve the good vs. evil dilemma (yet, it is easier to let religion decide for us). For instance, why do some religions ban birth control? Is it really that bad? Well, that’s a good question, and maybe it is in a sense… but, isn’t bringing kids into extreme poverty, sickness, famine, and dysfunctional families (even when money is not a problem) a little bit more evil than simply trying to prevent getting pregnant by wearing a condom, using the pill, or trying natural methods? We are adults, and we should be able to see what is right and what is not. Of course, there are other awful examples found in most religions (such as referring to women as inferior, slavery, beating your wife, etc.), but I think you get the point.

I know sometimes it can be overwhelming to go through life without being able to answer so many questions… from the most simple ones to the most complex. “Should I be in this relationship?”, “Is there a God?”, “Will this haircut suit me?”. This is why many of us turn to religion, science, friends, the internet, etc., to help us find the answers. But we conform and get lazy… we disregard our common sense or our inner “gut”, and accept a particular doctrine no matter how faulty it is. We simply stop looking for the answers that bring real peace.

But when you stop and take the time to dissect your emotions and pay attention to your individual situation, you’ll understand that the answer within you makes a lot more sense. Don’t accept something you don’t feel completely at peace with, because at the end of the day you are the only one responsible for your life.