Unconsciously Conscious Living

After a night of pleasant company, good food and a couple of bottles of red, it occurred to me that a lot of the decisions we make and their subsequent actions may be the truest reflection of who we are! So, if my decisions and what I believe is truly me, then where did this me come from? Where the hell did my beliefs come from?

That night at the dinner party, a women boldly proclaimed that she hated Indians and their awful religious based third-world behaviour. As the night proceeded it occurred to me that she seemed mostly ignorant of Indian culture, so I asked her how many Indians she knew. Her answer shocked me as did my rudeness, yet if she didn’t know a single Indian, then where did her thought come from?

In this case it came from a parent and God only knows where they got it from. It could just as easily have come from the media, which is most people’s only tool for gaining the bulk of their information. It’s quite possible for us to despise an entire race of people without ever realising why? It’s scary when you consider that beliefs like these may be creating who we are.

I discussed this with a friend, who attested to my summations by providing this example. He suggested that ‘if a white man raped a girl, we see this perpetrator as a lone and despicable rapist. Yet, if a non-white man rapes a girl, we see the whole race as rapists’. He made the point that our decision to believe this was made for us by years of media conditioning, ultimately to sell advertising, yet whole societies buy into beliefs such as these.

Alright, if we are the ones responsible for creating our lives then surely we would choose thoughts that manifest into wonderful experiences. Well maybe … at times our own belief system drags us back down to a reality it has decided to believe even though we don’t like it and it doesn’t work well for us.

It seems that we’re our own producers, making our life’s movie and projecting it into our reality as what our eyes see … our destiny … the path laid out before us. We are the leading men and women who get to star in our own production of who we are. We even get to develop the characteristics of that character to enhance our amazing show … right

Personally I’m nothing like a Spielberg, so it would be fair to say that not all of us are going to make award winning movies, or grow into super stars, especially given that the script for our show comes from our own flawed belief system, either conscious or unconscious. Truthfully considered, my creations seemed like B grade episodes from some self-created horror lunacy.

Ah ha … An epiphany … I get it. My beliefs and thoughts create the great drama of my life. So if my show is so bad, then my beliefs must be at fault.

When I actually took the time to think about it, I discovered that many of the beliefs and the decisions I was making in my life were actually being made by others. I asked myself where these beliefs and decisions came from and this was the result: The media, mothers, fathers, family, friends, wives, husbands etc. All beliefs belonging to others, the most prevalent coming from parenting and media saturation, mostly through television.

The truth. We’re not making most of the decisions about who we are. I wasn’t creating my life. I was living unconsciously. Life was dragging me along by the feet and I didn’t seem to have any control over the direction and purpose of my life. Other people’s ideals and negative beliefs were how I was living my life; how is was making my movie! Alright. Stop. Enough.

So, what to do? Firstly, I began to determine exactly who I wished to be and I started to make decisions that reflected that person, taking on-board the old adage that ‘we’re not here looking for self, where here to create self’. I made myself aware of my ‘true’ inner beliefs and began to choose only those that reflected who I wished to be and threw out the others.

It took a while, but I am now something like the character I chose … yes, the one I chose. Now I determine exactly how I feel about mostly everything … Conscious Living.

Here’s how it can have a very beneficial result on your life. I once knew of a person who had suffered a horrible situation. This caused him terrible grief every time he thought about it. Loss … great loss. He said it felt like a fist rising from his stomach and into his throat, choking him whenever those thoughts occurred; day after day, year after year.

He blamed everybody, himself included. It was pain driven by rage, guilt and feelings of powerlessness. He was reacting, but also choosing that experience because of what he chose to believe. So, what did he do? He stopped; literally changing his mind. He now chose how he felt whenever he pondered that situation. Now, because he thought to believe differently, he felt only joy and a myriad of other positive emotions.

This friend learned to trust and appreciate himself, when he started to see who himself actually was. The hidden one, the real one. Now the inside has become the outside. Now he chooses to be happy, joyful and content at all times and guess what? He really is. He told me that he is creating his life exactly how he wants it to be.

A Colourful Silhouette

The sign for the outback town of Coober Pedy

The sign for the outback town of Coober Pedy

Coober Pedy in South Australia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coober_Pedy). It is so hot here, that some people live underground.

One of many amazing sunsets that we saw on our trip out into the middle of Australia. We travelled 8000km in two and a half weeks. The sky out there is so big and beautiful. This is one of my favourite travel photos.


Myrtleford – Free – Meet the Author Event

Meet the Author - Ken Grace

Meet the Author – Ken Grace

Meet the Author of Blood Prize, as he tours regional Victoria and NSW during August 2014. Final stop for the month is Myrtleford on 29th August at 12.30pm.

This event is Free, however bookings are required, please contact Myrtleford Library on the following details to reserve your place.

Crn. Standish St & O’Donnell Ave
Myrtleford VIC 3737
Phone: 03 5752 2038

The Night Train to Hanoi

After a noisy, jolting overnighter on the train from Sa Pa, we arrived in the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi, at the ungodly hour of 4.30am. As the train doors opened, wild yells and angry arguments could be heard, as numerous touts and cab drivers jostled for the arriving business. Amongst this bedlam, we managed to negotiate our taxi fare from an initial 120,000 Vietnamese dong to 80,000, then back to 100,000, and finally all the way down to 50,000 dong, without actually saying or doing anything. Eventually, we arrived in a dark alley, in what appeared to be the middle of nowhere, so we happily gave our bemused taxi driver a thorough dressing down, whilst getting soaked in the pouring rain. After wandering for a while in the darkness, we finally discovered the May De Ville hostel, up the street, in another tiny alleyway. Apparently, 50,000 dong only gets you so far.

Our Hanoi adventure may not have started well, but events soon changed for the better. The night shift manager happily checked us into our room at 5am and even said that we could help ourselves to a free breakfast at 6.30am, when they began serving. Feeling much better about the state of our world, we dumped our packs and decided to head back out in the pouring rain to experience Hanoi and the lake, before it got too busy. This provided us with an interesting view of the old city, watching all the stall and shop owners setting up for the day, as they opened their shutters, put out their wares and received their deliveries, including very large blocks of ice, which seemed impossibly big for the bicycles they arrived on.

Hanoi in Motion

Hanoi in Motion

Later that evening, we went about experiencing Hanoi in full swing. “You buy from me” rang out in a constant cry from each street vendor; selling everything from bananas and pineapples, to t-shirts and even zippo lighters. Here we learnt how to cross busy streets without being skewered by the multitude of motorbikes, travelling in every direction, on both sides of the street and the pavement. An old women carrying two heavy baskets, balanced on either end of a yoke, provided the lesson. Even though her back was bent from the weight, she seemed to negotiate this madness, as if she were out for a leisurely evening’s stroll. So we closed our eyes and very slowly wandered out into the traffic. Amazing! Rather than die horribly, the traffic magically maneuvered around us.

After a lot of hinting, I became acutely aware of the next day’s major event; our second Wedding Anniversary, so we asked the staff where we could find a really great place for dinner. That evening we dined in a lovely Italian restaurant, but later, when we arrived back at the hotel, we thought that someone had broken into our room. Then we noticed the items on the desk. The staff had, of their own accord, organised a very decadent looking cake and a single long-stemmed red rose for our anniversary. To say how marvellous they made us feel, is quite the understatement.

Fisherman in Boat

Fisherman in Boat

The next morning we walked out to West Lake for a look at the Pagoda and strolled the streets outside of the Old Quarter, spotting a posh looking French restaurant along the way. We decided to come back there for dinner later on. It didn’t disappoint. We picked out the most impoverished looking Cyclo driver from a loud competing bunch, who rode us very slowly through the traffic, towards our destination. It might well have been romantic, except that our very elderly rider tired visibly, as we proceeded, so we ended up paying him for the entire journey and walking most of the way. Eventually we dined on tempura crab, roast duck, salt & pepper squid and beef with lemon grass.

On the walk back to our hotel, we heard a voice call out “Ken” from within a large unruly crowd and we found ourselves looking at a tall, bespectacled guy, who seemed to know us. After a few moments of befuddlement, we finally recognised Danny, the traveller from Alsager, who we met at the top of the chair-lift in Dali. We also spotted his lovely partner, Michelle, so we joined them for a few beers and traded travel stories, before heading back to the hotel.

The next day we’re to be picked up early by Tien; our guide for the next three days on Ha Long Bay. Could this place be as wonderful and picturesque as they say? Tomorrow will tell us for sure.

Meet the Author – Library Tour Continues

20131204_143039Author Talk – Ken Grace

When: 28 August 2014, 2:00pm – 3:00pm

Where: LibraryMuseum, Corner of Kiewa and Swift Streets, Albury

Price: Free

Local author Ken Grace will discuss his first novel, Blood prize, a thriller featuring Tom Fox and the sinister Cel Rău half twins, Uta and Réz. Ken is currently at work on two new books: The Leviathan and Balaam’s Deceit, both featuring many of the original Blood Prize characters. Born in Albury and growing up in Howlong, Ken developed a lifelong love of the natural world having explored the diverse environs of the area. Having discovered the wondrous world of books, Ken has used this rich diet of experience to fuel his imagination.

Q & A session plus book sales and signing.

Bookings: 02 6023 8333

Free Event – Tonight at Wangaratta – 6.30pm


Meet the Author – Ken Grace – ‘Blood Prize’

Date & Time:
Wednesday 13 August, 6:30pm – 8pm (2014)
Wangaratta Library – 21 Docker Street Wangaratta
Type of Event:
Book Launch (ASA member)
Wangaratta Library

Meet the Author of Blood Prize, as he tours regional Victoria and NSW during August 2014. First stop Wangaratta on 13th August 2014 at 6.30pm.

Bookings are required, contact Wangaratta Library on the following details to reserve your place.

21 Docker St, Wangaratta VIC 3677
Phone: 03 5721 2366
Fax: 03 5721 5532

Bookings are required, contact Wangaratta Library on the following details to reserve your place. 21 Docker St, Wangaratta VIC 3677 wangaratta@hclc.vic.gov.au Phone: 03 5721 2366 Fax: 03 5721 5532