We each create our own mythologies. LukeyoutheU has some—stories, beliefs, understandings of life—that you may find useful, and good. I invite you to explore and discover, rummage and be systematic.
light blue links to that page (books)
dark blue to that page on a new tab (scm)
black underlined to a page sequential
LyU, the website, is a spacious and complex structure. Like any great big house, you can know its main rooms, smaller rooms, additions, and secret passageways only by investigating it. If something on a page interests you, read/ select it. If your decision takes you to another page (as clicking on most photos will) that page will be on this site. If a link is offered for outside LyU, that website's name is made known (typically in parentheses near it).
LukeyoutheU's books b are on various topics. I try to be, I am, all about life, and Life, and that includes in my writing. These short books talk about some of my understandings of it. If you decide to buy and read them, they will cost you money and your attention.
The LyU podcast p has six series; I cohost them all. My cohosts, one per series, come from a variety of backgrounds and beliefs. All six of us have our mythologies/ stories to tell, and, I think, learn from.
-an inquisitive, nontraditional Christian who relishes Greek myths, and believes in reincarnation, cohosts some conversations with marc scm
-a spiritually awake, and increasingly self-realizing, Manhattan lawyer cohosts the consciousness shift tcs
-an extremely well-traveled, nonreligious humanist who has been successful in living the life he wants cohosts a considered life acl
-a text-first, believing Christian cohosts a discussion of a book in the New Testament luke's perspective, and ours lpo and four highly charged chapters from the Old earliest of days eod
- an ancient-Arabic reading, practicing Muslim, who is also a modern-day pharmacist, cohosts heroes of the bible and the quran hbq
I find, well, to put it bluntly, I find truth in what each and all of them say. Their stories are of my mythologies. Part of how I understand life.
Just because the LukeyoutheU website is listed first, the books second, and the podcast third does not mean you have to experience them in that order, of course. (If you choose to experience them at all). Go straight to the books, if you would like; or visit whatever or wherever else you would like. There are other parts and considerations baked in, as well; I leave it for you to find them.
The universe is not indifferent to us; it also does not accommodate our every want. We are deciders, as individuals, as peoples, and as a species, in some parts of life, I do believe, and receivers in others. The proportions of our influence are not all fixed. We are not alien to life but inexorably part of it. We have no choice, zero, except to be active players in it. Deciding, consciously or unconsciously, to try not to participate is to actively withhold the potential good of our individual participation.
Put another way, life is like being at the beach on a hot and sunny day. You have two likely options. You can swim in the water and body surf the waves, treading water while you wait for the wave you want. The rideable ones appear on their time, not always at a time convenient for you. Or you can stay on the beach. On the so-thought solid land. The sand hard but not firm. Either way, you are going to work. You do the work of swimming in the water; or the work of baking in the sun.
Let's go at this one more way. Life, the universe, is complex, with simple parts to it. We can know some of its complex parts and probably not all of its simple ones. I think a model, an idea to follow, is that we go for the useful and good. Not just the useful; not only the good. The useful and good.
LukeyoutheU is nothing less than about finding, that is, making, meaning in life. I correct myself: meanings in life, plural. None of us has the exact same meanings of life; nor can we. We all find, and put, meanings into and onto so very many ideas, things, people, habits, understandings. I do not think all meanings found or decided on are of the same value or use; it is plain to my sight that they are not. What I try, though LyU, in life, is to continue to improve my meanings. I want to help bring about what I consider a better life for me, for others, for the planet. I hope, in LyU, to assist you, as you allow, in discovering, finding, making your own meanings towards the betterment that you desire. Some of which, maybe much of which, may, or may not, be like mine.
story time, for adults
Once upon a time, I took a modernist art class. A good friend had signed up for it, suggested it to me, and I went along for the ride. We were in the class shown photographs of a sizable portion of the world's most famous modern art. I was drawn to much of it visually, some of it intellectually, and a few examples viscerally; as for some other pieces, well, I just scratched my head. We were presented well-supported, impassioned theories on the work of Pablo Picasso, especially Les Demoiselles d'Avignon; our instructor was a renowned scholar of the artist and the piece. I wrote a paper on Jean DuBuffet's l'Hourloupe series. I did not see the black lines as marks of separation and alienation but, instead, connection.
As much as I enjoyed the class (and I did), over the course of the semester I began to understand something that has proven more significant to me than the artists, that is bigger to me than the pieces themselves. It is one of the great gifts available, I think, from modern art as a whole. It is this: an understanding of perspective and participation.
Art has two parts, that of an active creator and a passive viewer, a giver and a taker. If you want to see it in that way. But in the larger, dare I say real-er, whole-er, picture, art involves, and reflects, both the artist(s) who produced it and the viewer/ reader who considers it. Art (and life) can seem like a one-way street, be talked about as a one-way street, feel like a one-way street. An avenue on which there are creators and there are consumers. Probably many see art (can only see it?) that way: we who are viewers separate from and looking at fixed work. Consumers buying visual goods with the attention of their eyes. Really, though, art is a two-way thoroughfare. The viewer is, or at least can be, an active participant in it. Consciously or unconsciously, we decide what the art (and what life) means to us. Even if we decide that meaning is "nothing."
I encourage you to take that latter understanding, and make it broader. Apply it to your own as-you-have-experienced-it life. I think you will likely get to this: that each and every one of us, and all of us, apply meaning in and to our lives, to life, all the time. We apply it always. Sometimes multiple types of it. To all the things, events, and people in our lives. We usually do so on an unconscious level. (And thank goodness for that as, otherwise, we could easily be consciously overwhelmed.) Nevertheless, we do. Whether we are consciously aware of it, or not.
The meanings we give, the truths we hold on to, are the footings and foundations of our lives. Are the additions we put onto the house we were born into. We reveal the meanings we have given/ are giving by the stories we tell, the way we tell them, the order we tell them in. By the nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, speech we use. We continuously describe/ ascribe meaning to the people (foolhardy, smart, attractive), things (shiny, clunky, ancient, new), and events (thrilling, devastating, boring, significant) in life.
I carry in me stories that help me to live, to make sense of life. I would guess you do, too.
The particular story I hold among the uppermost: Life, including my little, itty-bitty life, a life being lived out here in a suburban town not too far from the western edge of the North American continent, has meaning. Multiple meanings. I would like to suggest to you that your life, wherever lived, does, too.
I have noticed that it is oftentimes the shouters, and the promisers of something new, and the repeaters, who get most people's attention. In LukeyoutheU, I try not to shout. I offer what I hope to be useful repackaging more often than the brand spanking new. I aim to often enough reiterate, but not too often repeat.
I am not trying to dazzle, inveigle, or hoodwink. I am trying to intrigue, encourage, and invite.
Some additional notes which can further help you with this site. You earned them by exploring this page.
-If you are unsure about a word or phrase's meaning, give yourself a present. Look it up. You are very likely reading this using a computer which is connected to the internet. If not, find one; or look in a magical book called a dictionary. Lots of words in there. A richer vocabulary can help build for you a more creative mind and a more robust, enjoyable experience of life. Think of the joy of creating new synapses. (If you think I have used a word or phrase wrongly or poorly, please correct me.)
-There are, quite possibly, even likely, parts of LyU that will not appeal to you. One or more of the podcast's series, or the topic of a book. Great! I am telling you parts of my story; I am not telling you about, or predicting, yours. If you find something you do not like in LyU, please do move along. Now you know what not to consider further.
-I ask you to think BIG. But not only BIG. I also ask you to to think also small, Medium, and tiny. Each in its own good time and place. LIfe is vast and miniscule and inbetween.
-You are a marvelous being, dear reader. Really, you are. You have a body, a mind, physical senses; an inkling that there is more to know, more ways to grow, than you have yet experienced. In addition to who you currently are, and what you have already given to the world, you are a being who can know, perhaps already knows, that you want to even more live. To give better, and more. You can. We are players in, active characters in, inexorably part of, Life. The decisions you make (yes you, dear reader, you, even now) have an impact on, sometimes visibly determine, your future; affects the futures of those in your orbit; and, even, possibly, can aid The Future itself.
-LukeyoutheU is not a religious faith. It does not ask you to have a particular faith. (I happen to have one.) It does, however, ask for faith: for you to have faith that you can be, and that it would be good for you to be, at least partially aware of your greater self. In whatever form that increased understanding takes. And by moving into, becoming more of your greater, not only bigger but more universally conscious, self, you will add good to the world. To Life.
Your next step is yours to decide. Life awaits; it often seems/ does respond to decisions acted out (even if that decision is not to decide).