Thursday, November 25, 2010

Enough is Not Enough

I vividly remember how my brain hurt while I was writing my thesis, how I felt that I have reached my limits and that this is the best that I can do - no more. How after surpassing that, I realised that things made much more sense afterwards. Somewhere along the process I actually understood, and now looking back I know I can write a 100-150 page research on another topic.

And yet we arrive to the same point. Where upon my 50.000th word of my PhD thesis, I stumbled. Surrounded by dozens of books and a string of tabs on my browser, once again my brain said: Enough.

And my head hurt all over again on a whole new level.

The difference now is that I know this is a journey where my comprehension is tested and pushed further. That the only way to learning is to actually force myself to know more.

And I do hope for the rest of my life I get these stumbles. Because then I know I'm continually growing, continually learning. It's when I don't feel that I have reached my limits that I should actually be concerned; because it means I am unchallenged.

Having said that, it could be a research paper or juggling work and family; or both; or relocating to another country; or a first day at a new job; or letting go of a loved one; or anything - being desperate and having a moment where we feel like this is 'enough' is actually the moment where we can actually grow beyond what we were capable before.

And the journey continues.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Had a session this morning with my supervisors. Currently comparing different interpretations of (if not only different because their multidisciplinary nature - that is what I have to find out) Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) and select three methods to identify said discourse in three different, yet interrelating, units of analysis.


I'm strongly suspicious that I have overestimated my brain capacity.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Having or Being

The philosopher Erich Fromm, he forecast a society that was obsessed with possessions. He believed that human beings had two basic orientations: having and being. Now, a person with a having orientation seeks to acquire and possess things, property, even people.

But a person with a being orientation focuses on the experience. They derive meaning from exchanging, engaging and sharing with other people.

Unfortunately, Fromm also predicted that a culture driven by commercialism, like the one we live in today, is doomed to the having orientation. Which leads to dissatisfaction and emptiness. (...)

The point is there's always going to be extremes (...). Things don't have to mean everything, nor do they have to be devoid of meaning. They are one of the ways in which we can experience and enjoy life.

Ray Langston, CSI

PS: Bet you didn't expect that I got that from television.