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Vincent Van Patten
Exploring what lights my soul on fire. Writer and host of The Dare to Dream Podcast. Check out my debut book: Arrows of Youth

The connection between what we say, what we are, and what we might become

Photo by Talen de St. Croix on Unsplash

When we give a name to something, it’s no longer just pure being. A name or a label carries with it an idea of what that thing is supposed to be and do, set in solid stone instead of being a fluid concept.

What makes a thing what it is? An apple an apple, a bird a bird, a human a human? What makes me, me? What does it mean to be myself? Is I the part of us that doesn’t change, or is it what’s continually evolving?

How are we to know who our true self is? We’re given…

The choice is ours to listen.

Neskowin, Oregon

One of the major underlying themes of my book Arrows of Youth is overcoming resistance.

Resistance tries to take root in practically every aspect of our lives; it’s our inner voice and the exterior pressure which tells us we’re not good enough, that we don’t have what it takes, that we’re not worth loving or worth fighting for.

Most applicably, it told me I’m foolish to write a book with no experience, or that my dream of becoming a travel writer will forever remain a dream.

Throughout the book, I at some points seem to overcome the resistance; but then…

A mindfulness practice to renew your interest in the present

Photo by Callum Shaw on Unsplash

The present moment is what we perceive in the here and now for the first time; yet the present seems mundane when the experience remains the same — we seek what makes the continuum of time verge towards the new and exciting.

To see where we are with a fresh perspective takes consistent will, gratitude, and faith. Because as corny as it is, the present moment is a gift from a source we can’t comprehend.

Why then are we merely trying to get through the day, to get to some future that will be just as unsatisfactory if approached with…

Why we must study history to learn how we fit into our modern-day

Photo by Jessie McCall on Unsplash

When we see individuals, present or throughout history, who have given everything to follow their dreams, who have lived adventurous lives and even changed the world, we wonder how they did it.

The world was different then — a common trope that I’ve told myself many times when fantasizing about the days before social media, where a writer seldom had more than a journal on the road and a typewriter at home.

They lived their story, they discovered, they wrote, and if they were extremely lucky, a publisher would take a chance on them. …

While we’re here, lets find love in what we can’t explain

Photo by Dewang Gupta on Unsplash

The radiant moon hides in a pocket of summer clouds, rolling and pale pink in the hazy light of dusk. It had been a long day; life tested my patience and my strength of mind and body.

I left for a walk at that glorious hour when the night and day converge; inspired by the depths of darkness and brilliance of day, our inner being finds a moment to speak, to revere, to contemplate without restraint.

Life becomes fuzzy amid the dance of burning sky and fading light; the lines of reality blur, and the night envelopes us in love.

No matter what happens, get up and keep playing.

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

The past remains the past when we decide to float on. What if life is just a game? A beautiful, profound game. The winner is the one who enjoys it the most. They want others to enjoy it too.

The wisest among us have figured this out — they flow with the natural motions of life; they adapt, shift, and remain aware of the present moment’s needs.

Not needing to speak, their wisdom flows from the sound of their laughter. Their joyful nature shines in the glimmer of their smile. …

I don’t want to waste a second taking it for granted

Photo by Yuly Shaiou on Unsplash

The framed picture of a skeleton stands fixed on my desk — his crossbow points directly at me. By his foot rests an hourglass with a message that reads:

My arrow, I assure you, spares no person.

You will all dance to the song of which I sing.

Memento Mori is a Latin phrase associated with Stoic philosophy meaning ‘remember that you [have to] die.’

The picture on my desk inspires me to be fearless, to pursue the dreams placed in my heart, and to never take this life for granted.

Perhaps more importantly, it tells me to be grateful…

I can’t wait to get out there — but maybe this is holding me back.

Photo by Tom Barrett on Unsplash

The season that I’m currently in has been especially meaningful. It’s also been perplexing and beyond my comprehension. I feel a calling deep within my soul to travel the world, learn, and write.

Writing is a gift that I’ve been given to capture what I find inspiring and beautiful about life.

I long to get out there and see what I’m made of. I feel called to explore my interests: philosophy, culture, history, art, spirituality, health, relationships, meaning — and document the great unfolding.

I don’t know precisely how it’s going to happen, but that’s the direction I strive to…

Every season has its essence, a feeling that stays with you for the rest of your life

Photo by Isaac Berrocal on Unsplash

In the evening, I find a small inlet after driving along the coast near my home. The turquoise water by the shore turns dark and blue and glistens in the waning sun further out to sea.

After a day of work, the water beckons; I have to get in. Gazing at the ocean on a cheerful summer day is one of those sights that transcend time. It’s an experience I’ll never tire of; it makes me grateful to be alive.

My spirit fills with profound joy as I cruise along the coast, looking for the opportune place to jump in.

Vincent Van Patten

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