About Me: Mark D. Jones

Mark D. Jones

Life, Love and the Human Condition https://livelovethinkexist.com/ 

The Adventures of Sam the Tugboat http://samthetugboat.com/ 

Writing has always been my passion over the years, but it has always taken a back seat to the rest of life.  I was discussing with a friend back in 2009 how little we both knew about blogs and she said to me, “Mark, you should write a blog!”  You always know when an idea hits you across the forehead or the little cartoon light bulb goes on above your head – this was just such a moment for me – serendipity we call it.  That night I struggled with the software to set this blog up, which is actually very easy for anyone with half a clue and wrote my first entry – “Welcome To My World!”  It was an exciting moment for me, and an opportunity to write down my thoughts and perhaps have someone actually read them.

Since I was in the 6th grade I had always wanted to be a Veterinarian and after a challenging year and a half of Preveterinary Medicine studies at Michigan State University, it became clear that Veterinary Medicine wasn’t in my future.  I had never really traveled much from my home state of Michigan, so I decided to go on a great adventure.  The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien were always my favorite books and I yearned to wander off down a winding path into a distant forest like Bilbo or Frodo Baggins.  So I decided to take a journey and go on a great adventure…

Since I didn’t have much money, didn’t own a car, motorcycle or a horse and walking would take much too long to get anywhere – I decided to bicycle around the United States.  Everyone thought I was foolish for dropping out of college, but I didn’t care – and I set about planning my trip.  I had maps everywhere in my dorm room as I pondered my upcoming quest – not quite the search for the Holy Grail but it was to be my own great adventure regardless.  I talked Bruce, a friend of mine, into going on the trip with me and in the Fall of 1976 – America’s Bi-Centennial Year – we rode on down the highway to start our great adventure.

After almost a year and 8,000 miles of pure adventure, no accidents or major injuries and most of our wits still about us, we ended our trip in Seattle.  We had traveled from Michigan to the east coast; down to Key West, Florida; along the Gulf coast to Texas; on to Colorado and up to Seattle, Washington.  Bruce returned to Michigan to continue his life, but I never really stopped living my adventure…it only took on many different aspects and filled many journals and yellow legal pads of my assorted ponderings and writings.

Before my bicycle trip I had written some poetry and had tried without success to write some song lyrics and music.  I knew that I enjoyed writing and during our bike trip I kept a journal of our travels.  After a few years in Seattle and various adventures in the northwest, including co-piloting a hot air balloon – I left on a Pan Am 747 bound for London, England, on a solo bicycle adventure through England, Scotland, Wales and France.  After a few months I flew home to Seattle, but my adventures continued on.  I later decided to return to college to study Business and earned my diploma in Business Administration from Michigan State University in 1981.  Pondering what my future life in an office cubicle would be like, I decided instead to choose adventure once again.  I had always wanted to be a fighter pilot and fly jets, so I joined the Air Force and spent 20 years as a Navigator (Weapon Systems Officer) in the fighter world – I couldn’t qualify as a fighter pilot because I wore glasses.

My Air Force adventure took me to Europe again for 16 more years.  I lived eight years in Germany – where I met and married my wife of 27+ years – and eight years in the quaint English countryside of Oxfordshire and Suffolk Counties.  I flew jets and lived my dream.  I deployed to the Persian Gulf War, so I really did become a Vet – just a different kind of Vet than I had imagined back in 6th grade – a military Veteran of the United States Armed Forces.  While overseas I was able to experience much of Europe, Africa and the Middle East – and what an adventure and experience it turned out to be!

Over all those years I continued to write.  I kept a logbook of my bicycle adventure through England, Scotland, Wales and France, started writing Jonathan’s Dream (An Adventure Novel) around 1984, created the character of Sam the Tugboat through the bedtime stories I used to tell our son around 1990, wrote 200+ copyrighted songs (music and lyrics) from 1991-1993, began writing my autobiography in 1994 and another novel called The Many Portraits of Life around 2009.  I know my life has been unique and that I have experienced and seen many places in this world – however, I have never stopped thinking or viewing life as a great adventure.  If any of my writings prove to be of assistance to you as you contemplate your own adventures in life, then the entire process will have been worthwhile!

I’m staying close to home these days, but my adventures still continue – only now they’re more philosophical in nature – instead of on a bicycle or strapped into a jet.  I’m content with that…after all, adventures are hard work!  Now I can just sit down at the computer!

As for other interests of mine, my favorite music is Contemporary Christian as well as the Progressive Rock I loved growing up:  Genesis; Yes; Rush; Pink Floyd; Emerson, Lake & Palmer; King Crimson; etc.  My favorite books are the Bible, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.  My favorite movies are The HobbitThe Lord of the Rings series and any good Romantic Comedy.  My favorite colors are soft pastels of any shade.  My favorite holiday is Christmas along with the entire Advent Season!

Thanks for stopping by – enjoy your day and come around for another visit sometime!  You can also contact me directly at:

Email: mark.d.jones2112@gmail.com

Twitter: @livelovethinkex

Google+: https://plus.google.com/106563039817258733819/posts

Cheers!  🙂

Mark

Live, Love, Think, Exist

When I started this blog I needed to come up with a username in order to get started.  Not knowing just where this blogging venture would ultimately take me, I thought that I’d just string together a few key words that had significant meaning to me.  It wasn’t until after establishing the blog that I found out that livelovethinkexist.wordpress.com would be the official address.  In fact I couldn’t even find my own blog very well on my own.  I had to ask my son (kids know everything about technology these days) how to easily navigate to my own page, and in about 5 seconds he showed me.  🙂  I’m glad the next generation is fully equipped to work with this new and evolving technology, because I’m barely keeping my head above water with it!  Don’t even ask me if I know how to use a camera phone…because I don’t.

At first I thought, that’s an awkward site address to use – no one will find it on the internet!  The more I thought about it the more I actually liked it – and here’s why.  First of all, most people will find this site from a simple Google search, which is one of the most amazing wonders of the modern world.  To query Google for a piece of information and get hundreds of thousands of results instantly is beyond my ability to even fathom.  Secondly, once someone finds this blog all they have to do is save it under their favorites or email the link to someone.

So the fact that my blog has a long site address doesn’t concern me in the least.  What I actually think about it is that anyone who is interested in what I discuss here will appreciate the thought behind the site address.  My readers have to be Thinkers and Ponderers, or what I discuss won’t interest them at all.  They also have to be Dreamers, Adventurers, Poets, Readers and Children at Heart – otherwise they wouldn’t enjoy the many future Sam the Tugboat stories that I will write and post here or read the chapters of Jonathan’s Dream, which takes place in a far different world than what he was expecting.  My readers have to be Musicians or they wouldn’t be interested in the 200 original and copyrighted songs that I’ll soon start posting online.  Folks who read this blog will be interested in topics I call From the Heart, concerning Love and Passion – but from a spiritual and cerebral sense, not physical – so everything posted here will be friendly for all ages and backgrounds.  My readers will have an interest in Community and Personal Fulfillment – topics concerning both the individual and the greater social fabric that surrounds us.  My blog will attract people who are interested in Business and Organizational Theory – how to nurture organizations into a more productive common effort.  There is no limit to the variety of topics that I’ll post here, usually something new every day or every other day, that will allow them to check in with a cup of coffee or tea and spend a moment reflecting on the world around them with me!  🙂

In a word my readers will be a lot like me…(now that’s a scary thought!)…Inquisitive, Open Minded, Practical, Common Sensical, Folksy, Good Hearted, Spiritual, Dependable, Reliable, Free Thinkers, and Community Minded.  But if you discover this site and don’t think that you are any of these things, fear not – everyone is welcome!  You may just discover something new about life or about yourself or about me that will give you too a chance to pause and ponder, to look out at the distant horizon and wonder what is on the other side, to smell a flower or return a smile, or decide to read a children’s story to a young child.  In the end this blog is for you – my readers.  It is also for me as it is very therapeutic and provides an “official” excuse for my many ponderings.  Years ago in school my mind was often a million miles away as I gazed out of the window into the far corner of my imagination.  Now I can share those thoughts with you also.

In a partnership with my readers, anything that I post on this site is for your reading pleasure.  You can copy it, you can mail it, you can collect it, you can scrapbook it, you can give it to a friend, you can talk about it in school or do anything with it you like.  If you’re a musician and like the song lyrics and chord structures that I post here, you’re free to play the song – however you choose to interpret it – to your heart’s content.  Because, in the end, life is all about a contented heart.  It’s about self satisfaction and self discovery.  It’s about doing your best for yourself and for everyone around you.  It is to Love and Serve God.  The only thing that I ask of you is that if you like something I’ve written here – share it with a friend.  And when you do, simply say that it came from this blog, and don’t profit from it in a monetary sense – only from an intellectual basis.  My life is now an open book for the world to see and read about.  There is no income generated here – just a passion to share with you what I think is important in our world – the Truth as I understand it to be.  So readers, I want you to Live with Passion, Love with Commitment, Think with all of Your Ability, and Exist with an Essence, Vitality and Joy that oozes from every fiber of your being.  Or as Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, offers:  Cogito, ergo sum“I think, therefore I am” by René Descartes , and “Carpe diem” – “Seize the Day” a phrase from a Latin poem by Horace.

Life, Love and the Human Condition

When I wrote the first draft of my autobiography, In search of the Meaning of Life back in 1994, I wrote down a phrase that I still use today and also used to title this blog page.  The phrase is Life, Love and the Human Condition.  At first the words defined what I saw as a synopsis of our lives here on the planet earth.  We live, we love and we endure or exist throughout our journey from birth to death.  Everything in our lives fits into this phrase, perhaps not very neatly at times, but everything is in there.

The three terms Life, Love and the Human Condition also set categories or goals for our existence while we are alive.  We desire Life; we desire Love; and we would like to improve our state or quality of living or Human Condition for ourselves and for everyone around us.  So as we think about or contemplate or ponder (I like that word) our existence, almost any subject or situation finds a home in this short phrase.  One thing that I always like to do when pondering, is to go back to the dictionary to define the various terms that I’m pondering about.  In this case I’ll go to Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, to define parts of these three terms:

Life – Wikipedia discusses the “organic definitions of life” as well as the “philosophical question concerning the purpose and significance of human existence.”  I like to think about life in terms of our being alive not from the biological processes that enable this to be so, but from the perspective that we have life within us.  We are a vessel in which life has come to us to live in us – a temple in which it dwells.  It is this vessel of ours through which we nurture and protect this life within us – this most precious gift of ours.

Love – Wikipedia defines love in terms of  “a number of emotions and experiences related to a sense of strong affection and attachment.”  I think of love as a gift given to us by our creator that at once is supernatural and beyond our understanding, but at the same time it is physical and organic – something we believe in through faith, something emotional that can inspire the entire range of human emotions, and something physical that can actually cause us heartbreak and pain.  Love therefore has three distinct components: supernatural or theological, emotional and physical.  Through faith, we can believe in love as a doctrine of life.

Human Condition – Wikipedia talks about the human condition as “encompassing all of the experience of being human.”  For me I often dwell in the philosophical part of our existence.  I also spend time in the theological and spiritual portions of our experience.  I contemplate the myriad emotions of our individual and cumulative trials and tribulations.  I exist in the physical realmof what is our Human Condition.  Our Human Condition is at once static and fluid; one dimension and multi-dimensional; ethereal and grounded; understandable and unknown

The more I contemplate Life, Love and the Human Condition; I have come to understand that this simple phrase represents something that is much more and greater than the individual terms and definitions.  The meaning of this phrase is deeper and more profound than anything else that I know.  It defines everything about where we have come from, why we are here and where we are going.  The answer or key to knowing this simple phrase, Life, Love and the Human Condition – is Jesus.   Jesus is Life Jesus is Love.  Through obedience to the Father Jesus was made man.  He lived our existence and experienced our human conditions.  He was both 100% God and 100% man at the same time, in one being – sharing both our world and His.  Through becoming man, Jesus has taken on the experience of our Human Condition.  Jesus knows it and He understands it because He has walked in our shoes, walking the walk, and showing us how to both live and love – simply, purely and perfectly.  On the Cross He reconciled us to the Father by taking our sins upon Himself – giving us the Faith and Hope of being one with Jesus, The Holy Spirit and the Father, three in one,  at the conclusion of our experience that we call – Life, Love and the Human Condition.

Welcome To My World!

Welcome to my world!  As I start my first ever blog, I feel like the proverbial blind man in a dark room attempting to find my way around in my new environment.  The technology is all new, the universe within the technology is new, and my starting point here is reminiscent of the original “Big Bang” (at least in my own mind) and the only direction for it to escape is in all directions at once.  Bear with me as I find my own way here.  I feel like an embryo multiplying cells upon cells as my universe here expands…I’m blogging!  What is this “Brave new World” going to look and feel like?  Well, it’s a work in progress – much like me.  My thoughts race on towards infinite possibilities, however, the theme of this work is “Life, Love and the Human Condition.”  Climb aboard and travel with me into the blogging future…perhaps at a snail’s pace initially as I learn to crawl as a first time blogger…but eventually I’ll learn my way around this newly created universe and you will see how it all starts to come together.  Thanks for being here – all aboard!  This train is now leaving the station!