Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Thank You To The Staff At Dollarama!

Hi again. I'm here not for a long winded protest (which I do not retract) but to say thank you to the staff of Dollarama.

I was out shopping today on a very tight budget, trying to stick with my recent attempt to stick to vegetarianism (which I started once again about two weeks ago). I used to be a vegetarian from 2005 until 2007 and then again from 2008 until 2012, so I'm familiar with the turf. Thankfully the vegetarian prices and menu has come a long way since then.

Regardless I went shopping for a healthy helping of food for myself and my Cat. I'd been about 2/3 of the way through my shopping when I had to go to Dollarama to get Cat food and a few fixings for my vegetarian menu this week. After I'd paid for the merchandise at the Dollarama, I left without taking the merchandise.

I had finally finished my shopping and returned home when I noticed that I was missing the Cat food and some of the items I'd purchased from Dollarama. I promptly left and returned to Dollarama up on Parliament Street with my receipt and low and behold when I got there, my merchandise was waiting for me to pick up, bagged and all!

I've had similar positive experiences of similar nature with those at the Sherbourne Street Dollarama and as well at Freshco and NoFrills, where I do most of my grocery shopping. So I am grateful to Dollarama and to the unmatched service that I've received from those stores and as I've said Freshco and NoFrills in the Regent Park area.

Many of the businesses that operate in this community strive for excellence and usually draw in a loyal customer base, including the non-franchise businesses and restaurants along Dundas Street East and Parliament Street. One such example whose business is targeted at artists and philosophers such as myself is True Love Cafe located at the Dundas Avenue and Sherbourne Street intersection on the North West side. It is a diamond in the desert as my friend Skippy used to say. Skippy, I hope your well deserved rest is peaceful. I'm sure those around you are benefiting from your musical prowess and your striving for excellence.

So any of my qualms in the past has never been about the community of Regent Park in that regard. Every once in a while I see the strivings of commissioned artists whose art decorates some of the walls of the community (look to the Regent Park Aquatic Center, adding colour and life. I do sometimes encounter those with whom I likely have more in common, though less often get the chance to share ideas or with whom to be social. You don't often into people who are into transcendental numbers, coding, artistry, math, physics, metaphysics (woo woo?), Eastern and Western Philosophy, science and magic (magic?), but I know they're out there. Even in the Regent Park Aquatic Center. After all, it was here that I attended Aikido in the Dojo just down the street from me on Dundas Avenue. That's why I gifted them a Japanese book of Koans. Koans I say, and not cones. What is the sound of one hand clapping?

A far cry from the vitriol I expelled a few days ago? Very much so but when any people choose to fight a duel, they best choose the weapon whose blows they know that they can survive. As it so happened, vitriol was the weapon chosen by those who proceeded to attempt such a duel with myself. Consider this post to be an attempt to protect those who do not deserve to be damaged by my response to those who attacked with such bitter abuse and harassment. I'd much rather highlight the good of the community while ensuring that those who seek meaningless conflict and vitriol receive the like.

I'd republish the post, but I recently sponsored an ad for Lady Ada Lovelace Day on Twitter. I'd rather not dirty her name or burden any Women who are seeking a vocation in the world of coding and programming. After all, Lady Ada Lovelace is by and far the very first programmer, having created the very first programming language in order to operate a stitch and weave making machine before Charles Babbage began work on his Difference Engine. She is one of my idols for certain. In fact, in my (unfinished) book of 2011, A Lady's Prerogative: Test Of Time, the character Susannia is actually an alternately named Lady Ada Lovelace, who in fact was good friends with Margaret (in my book) who actually represents Mary Wollstonecraft aka the writer of Frankenstein and A Vindication Of The Rights Of Women. So having shared the ad with regard to Lady Ada Lovelace Day, I did not want any of the burden of my response to my attackers to end up with Women an certainly not with Women whom have nothing to do with drawing of said conflict and ire. Also, I am an ambassador of that for which I stand for and for those whom have inspired me. My parents did not teach me to be vitriolic, it is something that I learned in order to defend those who are vulnerable.

The philosophies that drive me seek completion rather than conflict (this is the most fundamental teaching of Aikido, though Karate do, Tae Kwon Do and Shaolin share the same core philosophy each embellishing the concept with their own signature of importance from community values to seeking peace rather than conflict) and therefore I am nothing.

I'm a Buddhist and Taoist much to the chagrin of many though I find much more in common between Siddharta Gautama, Lao Tzu (Tzi to some) and even the Christ aka Jesus Christ (whose teachings I often profess not to follow though the Apostles collectively represent the Gospel of Christ which was certainly expressing a path to enlightenment that was absconded by those who wield religion as a means of the power of control over others), Moses, King David, King Solomon (each of which founded our modern concepts of civic law and redemption through the reparations to society), Rumi (a great poet and philosopher of India), Umar (considered a pious and just member of the Caliphate who reinstituted the worship of the Jewish people to the Dome Of The Rock), C.G. Jung and of course Joseph Campbell.

Please don't think that you can dissect my beliefs just by reading about them for they are only understood by those who've lived them. No words can express, is the idiom of Lao Tzu and that which founds me. The different between everything and nothing is as vast as all that cannot be described. We are limited by time insofar as the expression of language therefore there is no thought we can truly explain, much like the resolution of any camera cannot capture all of the detail for there are always pixels between the pixels. Our thoughts have no pixels as does language have words.

Do not consider me pious because I am not. I do not worship symbols but certainly the principles which ultimately defined them. A worship of symbol over principle is a growing problem of the broken compass of many today though I believe in a secular society where the principles of our beliefs and philosophy drives us to better society more so than the symbols imposter those principles.

The symbols arise from principle and not the other way around. Red is just as equal to blue and none more so are to hate as they are to love as is any colour or symbol of which you can conceive. That is the principle of our Canadian Human Rights as it is the Universal Declaration Of Human Rights of the United Nations. As surely as the force of gravity pulls matter of the universe together and the direction of the flow of time from our perspective operates in the direction from cause to effect rather than vice versa.

I often say that I don't believe in God or the Devil but really what I'm saying is that I do not have to answer to anyone exactly the nature of what I believe. I'm not seeking anyone's approval after all because my sense of belief doesn't rely on others. God and the Devil are concepts that represent social symbols. There's something of principle that underlies those concepts that words cannot express and perhaps in the end it is more subjective than otherwise. So asking me (or anyone) if they believe in God or the Devil is irrelevant unless what you believe requires the approval of others. If you need to be a part of a bigger team in order to smite those whose beliefs differ from your own, perhaps you'd better evaluate your own self and your beliefs more thoroughly for you truly do not know yourself nor do you truly believe in anything.

In the midst of all of this philosophy science is as strong and present as ever and perhaps as we come closer to integrating a theory of gravity with Quantum Physics and Relativity, Science may become more related to philosophy than ever before (again a possible woo woo). Even more so than the famous Einstein-Bohr debates about the role of the observer in theory experiement as a means to describe the nature of the universe. In Quantum Physics, the observer's measurements actually affect reality, collapsing the wave function into a cause and affect reflecting probability favouring the consistency of actual cause and effect despite how we try to trick the nature of the universe into revealing an independent direction of time outcome.

So that's what I'd like to share with Women. With Lady Ada Lovelace. With other guys like myself who value a diversity where everyone's opinion and input counts, where it excludes abuse and harassment especially where their expression thereof violates the Charter Of Rights And Freedoms and the Human Rights Act of Canada and the United Nations. Even those with extreme points of view who might be stigmatized as haters should they respect the rights of everyone else, have their say, only losing their say when they resort to abuse and harassment violating our ideals in terms of the Charter Of Rights And Freedoms and the Human Rights Act and the United Nations Universal Declaration Of Human Rights. So today when I went out into my community of Regent Park, I experienced a much different treatment that was almost close to being treated as myself, with a few cases where others were clearly regarding me as being someone else for the benefit of their ideology.

I still feel that I (Brian Joseph Johns) was treated more so with the dignity, that every human being deserves should they respect others' rights. Therefore I'd like to express my gratitude to my community, rather than rewarding abusive people. Even empty handed and being nothing, I am more well armed than the conflict seeking can conceive. Today, I was confronted with (fair) respect and perhaps regard that was not of a polarity reversed nature. If so, then I'd hope my retractors are wearing extensive armour when they read this for I am expressing appreciation of my community rather than rewarding abuse. I'd never do so nor can I be manipulated into such a state.

Thank you to the wonderful businesses in Regent Park that I've mentioned as well to the incredible workers of this city, many of whom serve as the inspiration for my book in progress, Stories From The End (which is perhaps my most well hidden gem). Thank you to my family and friends whom shall remain close to my heart unconditionally even in the midst of their vitriol as much so as those apart from my family who have inspired me. They are many and I am their ambassador. When I express vitriol in duel, it is them whom I am defending. When I express love, admiration and respect, it is them that I am reflecting. I'd much rather promote the goodness of this community than the bad, though that duel is up to those in the community and there is no weapon that I fear, though there is much to be admired in appreciation and respect. Regardless I am still nothing.

It breaks my heart to see Women exploited through the sex trafficking industry via street prostitution, which up until the valiant work of the Toronto Police Service and those in communities who value Women, worked together to reduce that threat to Women across the board. Seeing a Woman whose parents spent 18 to 20 years teaching their daughter to have the strength and independence to face the challenges of a life that seeks to exploit their being in so many ways, have that stolen from them over the course of a summer at the hands of exploiters whose methods are largely unknown to the world of parents is truly heartbreaking and staggering. Especially when you see such Women a year or more after their loss of innocence in that regard of being exploited as street prostitutes whom pay for an acquired drug habit because of those who manipulated or exploited them. In my travels I saw just one such Woman today though perhaps I should not judge but I will form an opinion.

Sexuality is very much a part of life, and making a living from one's own body does not make one any lesser. After all, in our early adulthood we are seething with beauty and attractiveness that begs to be admired and appreciated, however. That is not all of which we are composed. I love nothing more occasionally than to mire over some of the attractive Women that I come across on YouTube, though not so much exploitatively as they are in control of their own expression. What they give is a gift because they benefit from it in a way that furthers their health and progress, most often not in order to pursue and fund a narcotics habit. Even on some more adult oriented places on the web, Women are in control of their own sexuality and exploitation and as it should be. Hopefully for their own benefit and once again not to pursue a means to the detriment of their health like crack cocaine or other narcotics. There are dancers who work as erotic dancers that express their sexuality as part of their own employ and business and if that is what they so choose, then it is theirs for their body is their own. Exploitation is when another group of people who only value you as a commodity convince you to express your own sexuality for their benefit or for the benefit of an acquired drug habit. An erotic dancer who loves their body and treats it as their temple while earning their income from doing so knowingly and by their own choice is none the lesser. Difficult ground to explore, but it is something that must be spoken of so that Women who've delved in this area are not stigmatized for the choices they've made and for which they've taken the responsibility.

To see a Woman who is constantly under the effects of a narcotic, especially while they're young and still have so much potential in any direction they choose is completely heartbreaking. Most (not all) Women who end up on such a path do not choose it for themselves for there is a whole underground economy that regards Women as puppets, whose strings are made up of crack cocaine and other narcotics. Seeing this and knowing that some dealer(s) locally essentially trapped and brainwashed this Women into this lifestyle, robbing her of her dignity is wrong. They regard her as nothing but a toy. She's valued to them until she's aged so much as a result of her drug habit that she's no longer marketable. Then she's discarded and someone else's daughter is put through the same or similar process by guys who have literally no respect for Women and the 18 years that her parents invested in her hoping that she'd stand against such challenges. That is one of the few injustices that makes brings me closer to my primal self, where violence against those who cause such strife to Women might be the solution, though internally I know this isn't the answer for that just yields the same.

The solution is to ensure that all Women are confident enough in themselves and their own choices, even when they go against the opinions of their friends that they can progress independently without the need of approval or succumb to the peer pressure of others so that no parents' daughter ever ends up in that situation as a result of the manipulation of people who'd do such a thing. That's one of the legacies I'd like to leave to this world like so many others who've pursued the same thing. I'd like to see a world where Women aren't stigmatized when they seek to escape the clutches of a social order of people who'd do that to them. I think that represents what my parents taught me, and what the people that I care about represent. Insofar as roleplay in a consenting relationship, that can be fun for both parties especially where it involves the sexual creativity of each. So for people who see exploiting Women in that way as business as usual, I've got a few bones to pick with you, though I'll not start this duel with you for I do not instigate battles. You'll have chosen the weapon. Make sure that it is a weapon with which you can withstand much harm, for in the defense of Women I'll wield it like nobody else has ever.

Thank you to the goodness in my community. Please do not make the mistake of trying to exploit me by bouncing me around between the red and blue for your own personal gain. I'm well aware of the Rhythm and Polarity and for the matter, the All, though I am nothing. I'd much rather prop this community up than be wrongly subject to abuse.

Thanks again to Dollarama and the local businesses that strive in the face of these challenges. Clearly Regent Park is growing and prospering in ways that benefit its' community. I'd much rather see this civic growth than the backstepping to what it had been circa 1990s forward until 2007 when the Toronto Police Services Vice Squad closed the book on the exploitation of Women and youth through narcotics and guns in such a fashion until now.

I'll be posting more chapters of A Lady's Prerogative Book I: The Yearning And The Learning tonight if you've already caught up on your reading. Thank you once again to my readers. Remember this life requires your input and your point of view. I'm not trying to force you to a specific path but to express that this world requires you to be a part of it and involved. Express yourself with confidence. Hark nought under the abuse of others who seek to make you the monster. There's others like myself who know the difference. We all need you. May everyone like myself stand in your defense.

Brian Joseph Johns
Regent Park - Toronto, Ontario, Canada

PS: I don't get paid for mentioning the names of the companies or businesses that I've mentioned here. I believe in sincerity before polarity. My love interest is Mandarin Chinese and I'll stand by her as I will the cultures of Canada and the Far East Of Asia who helped me to my feet when I was at my absolute lowest. You'll always have my unfailing loyalty. Thank you inclusively to my family as well. I miss you.

No alcohol was consumed before the writing of this post.

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