The Jewellery Box

20 April 2018 Friday 8:05am

“Wanna know what I think is one of the causes of broken relationships these days? It’s because we’ve forgotten the art of compartmentalizing. Some of us are no longer able to discern the line between the tangible & the intangible. One is of the soul. The other is of this world”

That was my tweet yesterday. Can you please explain what compartmentalizing means?

Didn’t you just read something about that online?

I did. I even shared the URL as a tweet. But it’s still blurry. I know you can make it much simpler to understand.

Thank you for your faith in me.

You’re welcome. Um…Where did that suddenly come from?

It’s doesn’t matter. Okay, let’s talk about compartments.

No. Not compartments – compartmentalizing.

We’ll get to that. Meaning of “compartment”, please.

Coming right up. Okay. “Compartment” has a few meanings. I choose this one, “a part or space marked or partitioned off.”

Does anything come to mind? An object perhaps? That reminds you of the word “compartment”?

Yeah. My jewellery box. I’ve got this little box which is sectioned into little compartments. Each one keeps an earring or two.

Why do you compartmentalize your jewellery?

So they’re organised. It’s easy for me to choose which ones I want to wear. A girl can’t have enough earrings or ear accessories, you know. It just makes an outfit look complete.

Maybe you mean, it makes you feel more confident?

Yes, maybe that’s what I mean too. We’ve digressed again, God. We’re supposed to be talking about compartments. Or rather, compartmentilizing.

Maybe you mean, we jumped from one compartment into another?

Have we?

One minute we were talking about the meaning of compartment. The next we jumped to talking about your jewellery. What actually happened was that we took away the partition from between two subjects – one topic is about the meaning of a word. And the other topic is an example of the meaning of that word – which is your jewellery box. We created one compartment out of both topics.

So are we compartmentilizing?

No, what we did is the opposite of compartmentilizing. We integrated two topics into one.

Is that good or bad?

It depends on where you wish to go, my dear. And there’s no such thing as good or bad. There is only what works and what doesn’t work in terms of what you are trying to achieve. And what we are trying to achieve here is to explain a complex topic in simpler terms. Taking something from one compartment (let’s call this compartment “Tangibles ”) to explain a complex topic (let’s call this compartment “Intangibles”) is our method of explaining to the world all about a very, very, very complex topic called the soul.

In other words, we are always taking stuff from the box labelled TANGIBLES to explain whatever is in the box labelled INTANGIBLES.

You got it.

Why?

Why what?

Why do we need to use tangible stuff to explain about stuff about our intangible soul? Why can’t you just explain in words?

Words do not have much retention power. Here’s an example – let’s say, a few months from now you come across the word “compartmentilize” again. And you suddenly remember asking me about it in your diary. What words come to mind which you can use as key words in your search tool?

Jewellery box!

Precisely. Now do you understand?

Not really. I’m still blurry about how to compartmentilize.

When was the first time you came across the word?

From a movie, actually. “The Holiday” starring Jude Law, Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet and Jack Black. I know, I know, I’m name-dropping. Sue me.

So what was it about? I mean, how was the word “compartmentalize” used in the movie?

Jude and Cameron’s characters flew sparks right from the very beginning. As the relationship went along, Cameron suspects Jude had other girlfriends – she felt he was hiding something. So when she made a surprise visit to his house, she found out he was a widower with two young daughters. She asked him why he didn’t tell her. If I recall correctly, he said he prefers to compartmentilize his life. His family life is one compartment, his love life is another. It makes his life less complicated. I can’t remember his exact words but I think it’s something like that. I have to watch the movie again. One of my fave movies actually. Jack Black’s “boob graze” scene was so funny! Uh-oh, we jumped to another compartment again.

Is it making the topic complicated?

No. Not really. I think as long as we remember to get back on the right track, there won’t be any problem.

Yes. That’s a very important point to remember. Always remember that.

I will. So to get back on the right track, when do “some of us are no longer able to discern the line between the tangible & the intangible” when it comes to compartmentilizing?

Your work is sometimes called your 9 to 5, is it not?

Yup. Most of us are at work from 9am in the morning to 5pm in the evening. But some do overtime. Instead of leaving work at 5pm we stay until late into the night, maybe even until midnight. But of course, those who do, get compensated for their overtime.

As in the tangible called money?

Yes.

Most of you have families. So when do you have time to spend with the family, giving and receiving love & joy – which are the intangible?

Oh, I know where this is going.

Where is it going?

It’s going to get back into the right track. It’s going to the statement that says, “some of us are no longer able to discern the line between the tangible & the intangible when it comes to compartmentilizing” because we’ve forgotten our priorities in life.

And what may that be?

To nourish and enrich the soul. To sum it all up – compartmentilizing is the art of knowing what matters the most. What matters the most is the nourishment and enrichment of the soul.

Bravo!

Thank you.

Buried Opportunities

6 April 2018 Friday 10:58pm

“Ever been to a cemetery? How many lost opportunities do you think are buried there?”

I’m having trouble with the cemetery tweet, God. So are you saying that opportunities that we let go or ignore will be buried with us?

When you’re given a compliment, what do you say?

I’ll say thank you.

Which means that by saying thank you, you accepted the compliment which are spoken words – which then becomes a thought in your head.

You can put it that way, yes. So what’s that got to do with buried opportunities?

Opportunities are thoughts, are they not?

Yes.

So when you turn down or ignore an opportunity, the thought of that opportunity has already occupied a space in your head. Shall we put it that way?

Yes, we can put it that way.

So what happens when you are offered many opportunities in your lifetime? What do you think happens?

I suppose the thoughts about them will occupy a lot of space in my head. Can we cut to the chase, please? Just tell me why opportunities are buried with us when we die.

Your soul is invisible. Your thoughts are invisible. So what do you think your soul is made of?

My soul is made up of thoughts?

Actually, your soul is made up of feelings which it turns into thoughts. You turn thoughts into words, which you then turn into actions.

Okay, I get it. The soul may be made up of thoughts of lost opportunities. But the soul doesn’t die with the physical body. The soul returns to you. The body just deteriorates and disappears into the earth. Definitely there are no lost thoughts of opportunities disappearing into the earth. Um..Are there?

All of a sudden you’re not sure?

I was before. But this beating around the bush is making me confused. So I’m beginning to doubt myself.

Exactly.

That’s it? That’s all you’re going to say? Exactly? I still don’t understand our tweet. How can opportunities be buried with us when we die? I’m back where we started.

Exactly.

*sigh* Never mind.

The Missing Shoes – A Dream

missing shoes

(From my chronicles – I still remember this dream like it was yesterday…)

18 August 2013 Sunday

I had a dream this morning. I was lost in a building – trying to find my way out. I was wearing a dark business suit – tailored shirt, jacket and trousers. I was walking around when I finally came to some glass panels with sliding doors. I went through and found myself looking down some stairs. There was a chain blocking it. I stepped over the chain and was about to take a step when I hesitated. It looked so steep! I was afraid I’d miss a step and fall.

I looked around and noticed a couple of escalators on the far side. I thought, That’ll be a lot easier and not so scary. I stepped back over the chain and went back through the sliding glass doors. I felt something on my head. I flicked it away with my hand and whatever it was fell to the floor. I glanced at it and saw that it was the chain from the steps. It got caught in my hair.

As I came to the glass entrance to the escalators, I noticed the escalators weren’t moving – Oh no, they’re out of order. I looked around and noticed a lady behind me. I was near the entrance doors of a theatre hall. She was the usher. She signaled to me – pointing to the sensors to make the escalator move. There was a green button at the side. But she came forward instead and touched it, signaling for me to step forward. I did and as the escalator started moving down I sensed the glass doors closing when she went back in. I looked back and saw the usher signalling to me again – I left my shoes behind! I looked down – I was barefoot. Never mind, I’ll go back. I turned as soon as I reached the bottom and rode the other escalator going back up. But when I reached the top, it was a totally different place.

This time there were two ladies nearby who looked like they were ushers as well. I asked them for directions to the entrance of the theatre hall that I came from. They said I have to go through their theatre halls to get back there. But if I didn’t want to be noticed by the cinema patrons, they said I should go through the one that was empty. I’m not afraid of people – so I said, “It’s okay, I don’t mind. And the movie hasn’t started anyway.”

As I went through the doors, I noticed it wasn’t a theatre at all but a classroom where some children were preparing for their lessons. As I walked towards the far corner, looking for the exit, one of the little girls called out to me, “You’re not supposed to be here! ” I said, “It’s okay, I’m just passing through.” I found the exit door and left.

Instead of finding myself at the place where I left my shoes, I found myself outside on the ground floor of the building. It was raining and I was still barefoot. There were a lot of people walking around. The place looked like it was a business area.

I thought I better take a bus back to where I came from to retrieve my shoes. The ride was a lot quicker than I thought and when I alighted I noticed I was the only passenger. The bus brought me to a hotel in a shopping mall. I decided I might as well just buy a new pair of shoes.

I found a shop that sold shoes that seemed reasonably priced. I took a pair of sandals from those that were displayed – checking the size. It was a size 5. I needed a 5 and a half or a 6. I requested the sizes from the young sales lady. I thought, How weird – she should be at the beach in that bikini she was wearing. Anyway, she did bring me a pair that was the right size but when I asked her how much it was – I thought the price was way too expensive for my budget. I told her I only had a few dollars in my bag. When I took out my wallet, I was surprised to find it contained different currencies from all over the world. The sales lady remarked, “Oh yes, we have plenty of those scam cases at this hotel.” Another lady customer agreed with her.

I felt disheartened. And I was still barefoot.

Then I woke up.