U Turn, At Last

You know something is wrong for you when you keep on wanting some aspects to change knowing that they will not and you cannot imagine coping with it while picturing your life in the next 10 years.

It could be a cult, a belief, a value, a culture, a certain society/person’s way of thinking and acting, and you could always escape, find the nearest turn, and take a new direction. Or you can just continue pretending that you have adapted, secretly knowing that your soul and dreams have died deep inside. Probably several times.

But maybe the wise were right. Those wrong turns and decisions can’t be considered wrong for they may lead everything to where they’re meant to be. Idealism and sentiments can be enough impediment clouding our judgments while our inner feelings always knew what we wanted to become as a person (or what we expect/deserve from other people, for that matter).

Then there are experiences we misread as “fate”. Things that seem to be “falling into places” by itself, things we “cannot help”. Maybe it’s comfortable, only because we didn’t do much to get into that place. Maybe it’s in our genes, our upbringing. Maybe it’s our blood type, maybe it was written in the stars, or printed on our palms. Whatever it is, we believe it’s meant to be, only because it was easy. They happened to us. We didn’t make any of those happen.

And while revising several “life principles”, I find myself contradicting previous theories

Apples may not fall far from the tree. But we’re not apples. And maybe we can change after all.

*pictures taken from “Love Kittens” by Milly Brown. Lovely book filled with adorable kittens… but not half as lovely and adorable as the person who gave it to me! ^^

First Things First!

The best thing about having your birthday in June is, everything new starts after it… New energy from summer holiday (but here the mosquitos are being just perfect buzz killer -_-), new term, new academic year, and a new age with new resolutions! And no, I don’t believe in “New Year’s Resolutions”…

Okay, so it’s July already, and yes I’m still waiting for another crucial phase of life to start… But in the meantime, I’ve succeeded to use time productively. And by “productive”, I mean focusing on the 4th quadrant of Covey’s four quadrant matrix. Well, 2nd quadrant as well when sanity is kindly hitting me.

4 quadrant

Before things from quadrant 1 start to torture, quadrant 3 start to become annoyingly distracting, quadrant 2 start to feel like heavy duty, and quadrant 4 become overly precious, I guess it is best to just enjoy this temporary extended leisure time.

So first things first! Have fun and enjoy doing stuff in quadrant 2 peacefully and quadrant 4 guiltlessly.

And I proudly introduce to you, the new blog theme & header… with an updated “About the blog“! *wink

A Gift For A Friend

A true friend to me is…

Someone who tries to respect my feelings even when they don’t understand.

Someone who listens and keeps my stories only for themselves.

Someone who offers to have a cup of tea without me asking, just because they sense that I am not okay.

Someone who trusts and shares to me as much as I do in return.

Someone who quotes my words and make me feel important to their lives.

Someone who doesn’t need to push me to tell them my problems because I will come to them eventually when I want to.

Someone who empathizes with actions. And words only if necessary.

Someone who knows how to deal with those who have treated me wrong without me telling them what to do.

And most importantly…

Someone to whom I can give these words, not because they make a good present, but because I mean every word, from my deepest heart.


This is a birthday gift for a very special friend of mine, they say that it is impossible to find real friends in worklife, but we have proved them wrong…
Or maybe we are simply the exception =)

Happy birthday, Cel… What would I do without you?

Friendship can only be measured in memories, laughter, peace and love.

And to all my dearest, sincerest friends… I love you and I’m so lucky to have you! ^^

Brida by Paulo Coelho



Only the present has power over our lives.


Never stop having doubts. If you ever do,it will be because you’ve stopped moving forward. On the other hand, you must be careful never to allow doubt to paralyze you. Always take the decisions you need to take, even if you’re not sure you’re doing the right thing. You’ll never go wrong if, when you make a decision, you keep in mind: “the Devil is in the detail.” Remember that proverb and you’ll always be able to turn a wrong decision into a right one.


I hate to say this, but reading Brida by Paulo Coelho was such a torture to me. I was beating myself up for not being able to finish The Valkyries before (trust me, it was even more painful), and practically finish this book only for my personal achievement, not by any pleasure whatsoever. Finishing it 5 days over the due date: my birthday, I am a bit disappointed (with my tardiness) yet so relieved that it’s finally over.

Maybe there was just no connection between me and Brida, maybe she just wasn’t human and relatable enough for me, but one thing for sure, this book (as all Coelho’s books) contains so many wonderful and useful quotes. If not for today, we can always keep them for the future…


Nothing will behave in the logical way you have come to expect. You will understand things only with your heart, and that can be a little frightening.
Yes it is frightening indeed, especially when you’re practically right-brain-dead.


Play your part and don’t worry about what others do. Believe that God also speaks to them, and that they are as engaged as you are in discovering the meaning of life.
So just QUIT sticking your noses up other people’s lives & business while yours is a mess itself! (yes, I’m talking to me… and maybe you)


“He doesn’t have the point of light above his left shoulder” he argued, “you told me that yourself”. But she didn’t care. Before she finally meet her Soul Mate, she wanted to know other men, to experience the world.
High five, Wicca!


A present from me to you. That is one of the eleven secret temples of the tradition of the moon. A gift of love & gratitude for the fact that you exist and because I have waited so long to find you.
Okay, this is just too sweet even I cried.


She had known love before, but until that night love had also meant fear.
Tell me about it!


I felt really useful and started telling him everything I knew, feeling that the many years I’d spent in the region at last had some meaning. That man sitting on the steps made me understand that I was important to the world and to the history of my country. I felt necessary, and that’s the best feeling a human being can have.
I couldn’t agree more.


Finding one important thing in your life doesn’t mean you have to give up all the other important things.
*coughing and leering at my best buddies*


172 Being human means having doubts and yet still continuing on your path.

175 Witches were, above all else, women.

176 She didn’t need to neglect her beauty in order to prove that she was also intelligent and capable.

183 Remember, the first road to God is prayer, the second is joy.

Accept what life offers you and try to drink from every cup. All wines should be tasted; some should only be sipped, but with others, drink the whole bottle.”
“How will I know which is which?”
“By the taste.
You can only know a good wine if you have first tasted a bad one.”

“That is what the forest taught me. That you will never be mine, and that is why I will never lose you. You were my hope during my days of loneliness, my anxiety during moments of doubt, my certainty during moments of faith.

“I will always remember you, and you will remember me, just as we will remember the evening, the rain on the windows, and all the things we’ll always have because we cannot possess them.”


I definitely need a long break from his works for now.

Pelatihan Quantum Ikhlas

Mengikuti pelatihan ini, jujur saja beberapa kali hati nurani saya memberontak dan menjerit tidak terima. Bagaimana tidak, disini kan tempatnya melatih otak kanan yang holistik, intuitif, dan mengawang2 penuh keabstrakan. Dan walaupun sudah diperingatkan..

“Nanti mendengar suara kodok jangan malah dipikirin, ini kodok jenis apa ya? Yang hijau atau yang hitam ya?” (maksudnya mungkin Rana atau Bufo — tuh kan frik)

..tetap saja loh ada pikiran2 atau ide2 atau pertanyaan2 bodoh melintas setiap waktu. Untung akhirnya sampai juga di fase trance (kalau meminjam istilah Oom Coelho di buku2nya) yang sangat out of this world.

Tapi memang benar, everything with the greatest powers are invisible: emosi, amarah, kebencian, cinta, iri hati, dendam, rasa rindu, magnet, listrik, memori, suara, aroma, sinyal, WIFI, dan bahkan angin saja tak kasat mata. Jadi masuk akal juga kalau untuk “menarik” apa yang kita inginkan, juga bisa dilakukan dengan pikiran dan perasaan, yang berupa gelombang elektromagnetik tak kasat mata itu. Bingung? Baca buku Fisika untuk SMP dulu deh sana..

Mungkin banyak yang lebih kompeten dalam membahas ilmu ini. Saya sempat menulis juga disini walau mungkin terlalu singkat padat dan kurang jelas. Yang pasti, setelah selesai “bermeditasi sambil berafirmasi dan berpasrah diri” di pelatihan itu, malamnya saya mendapat berita saya lulus tes praseleksi S2. Sebenarnya saya tidak berharap apa2 mengingat saingannya lebih banyak generasi di atas saya, dengan latar belakang pendidikan yang membuat saya mengkeret di pojokan ruangan. Saat itu saya cuma berprinsip, “Kalo gw lulus tes ini, artinya ini petunjuk kalo emang disini gw bakal menempuh gelar Master gw.”

And God answered immediately, in a clear-cut language. Hebat ya?

Mungkin yang ditekankan (tapi tidak disebutkan) adalah “the power of suggestion“. Kalau kita percaya laki2 itu semuanya sampah masyarakat, maka yang akan terus kita temui ya laki2 sampah masyarakat. Kalau kita percaya hidup ini ga perlu susah untuk bisa bahagia, ya maka kita akan berbahagia tanpa perlu banyak susah2. Kira2 gitu sih, dan sekiranya semua orang sebenarnya sudah tahu dan mengerti. Disini tempat untuk melatih dan mengingatkan diri, supaya mengendalikan sugesti2 yang kita lakukan setiap hari bahkan tanpa kita sadari.

Dan menurut saya bagian yang paling gila adalah kita bisa “mengendalikan” panjang-pendeknya jari kita, hanya melalui sugesti gelombang alpha! hihi.. seru banget. Kalo sugestiin bagian2 tubuh tertentu juga bisa membesar atau memanjang, mungkin gak ya benar2 kejadian? 😆 Cobain yuk!

Divortiare, by Ika Natassa

Not only did I guess correctly the ending of the book right after reading the first chapter, I also got itches here and there reading such surreal story with perfect characters who have perfect lives, perfect careers, and perfect partners *excuse me, I think I just threw up in my mouth a little.

Now I understand why I quit reading chicklits since 2005. I am simply a hopeless romantic! 😆

Attached are quotes written in order to avoid me regretting those precious hours and days wasted in the midst of my daily madness reading it. And hey, I liked some parts of it anyway.

*Thanks ya Pit untuk referensi & pinjeman bukunya (maksa lagi minjeminnya!). I hope after reading this, you’ll be much better prepared for your future marriage with your future doctor husband 😛


You don’t just get over something like that easily. Dan aku membencinya karena telah membuatku jatuh cinta padanya tapi lalu dia menghancurkan semuanya. Marriage councelor kami — yes, we went to one — pernah bilang ketika salah seorang mulai menarik diri, seharusnya pasangannya mengalah, meraih pasangannya supaya ia tidak menarik diri lebih jauh lagi. Dan butuh orang yang sangat tidak egosentris untuk melakukan hal seperti itu. Sayangnya, aku dan Beno sama-sama terlalu egois.


Opposite attracts, but two people who are so much alike are just like magnets with the same pole. Kesamaan itu justru menjadi pemecah, ibarat magnet berkutub sama yang akan selalu tolak-menolak. Seperti Superman yang tidak akan pernah bisa berdekatan dengan kryptonite walaupun keduanya berasal dari planet yang sama. When togetherness and unification turn into destruction. Maybe it takes physical attraction, intellectual intercourse, a very happy marriage, then a cold, bitter ending to make us realize that we are really each other’s kryptonite.. Jadi kalau aku bisa memutar balik waktu, aku akan memilih untuk membencinya dari awal. Dari detik pertama ketika ia tersenyum dan mengulurkan tangan untuk berkenalan denganku. Karena kalau aku membencinya, ia tidak akan bisa menyakitiku. Kita hanya bisa disakiti oleh orang-orang yang kita cintai, ya kan?

Jadi aku memilih membencinya.

Aku memilih membencinya.

Pernah nonton Red Dragon? Aku masih ingat satu adegan saat Hanibal Lecter yang diperankan Anthony Hopkins melihat bekas luka peluru di dada detektif Will Graham (Edward Norton), dan berkata, “Our scar has a way to remind us that the past is real.” 


I have a new found respect for actors and actresses. Orang-orang yang bisa memblok emosi pribadinya dan menyelami karakter dengan begitu luar biasa sehingga masyarakat awam seperti aku bisa terhanyut dalam cerita. Aku tidak akan pernah bisa menjadi seperti itu. Blocking my emotions so I can be someone else. Compartmentalize my feelings so I have two kinds of feelings: real feelings and feelings that are just for acting.


..”Mungkin karena elo kelamaan sendiri kali, Lex ya.” Tadi aku cuma mengangguk-angguk setuju saja, daripada dibahas makin panjang-lebar. Karena mungkin memang itu sebabnya. Sama seperti Andy Rodick, petenis favoritku yang jago banget di lapangan, tapi mungkin malah kagok seandainya jadi pemain ganda. The other person who’s supposed to help you win the game becomes a hindrance instead.


You know how it is when you know that it’s the last time you’re going to see something, and you just want to take a mental picture of it? Sesuatu yang bisa mengingatkan kita pada keputusan masa lalu yang mengubah hidup kita sekarang.
I am taking a mental picture of Denny. 


Over and Done

I am so done with whatever words coming from those who may know more – or less, those whom I respect – or not. There are just too many people to please, too much crap to handle, while that is not even the reason why any of us are here in the first place. It is everybody’s right though to critique and give inputs, to point faults and errors here and there, sometimes it’s even sweet and nice when it’s done appropriately, especially when being asked for. But for now, I’ll consider anything thrown at me as nothing but bull.

We suffer for our own good. And when things go too smoothly, when everything is too easy and comfortable, then it’s most likely that we are not at all growing. How many of us really comprehend the idea of the saying “no pain, no gain”? How many of us still dare to challenge ourselves by doing things that we thought we never were capable of, things we fear the most, things that everyone doubts we’ll ever achieve? How many of us still have enough gut to face our biggest phobias, learning to gain and get accustomed to new -not to mention painful- good habits? 

Good habits are hard to get used to because it takes conscious effort to do so. For sure it is much more convenient to stay the same, to follow our nature and remain in our comfort zone. For sure it is much more comfortable and easy to just slide along the slope, even though it’s going nowhere but down. But aren’t the roughest roads the ones leading to the top? Aren’t those torture actually the most important part of the climbing process? (No need to answer those questions, they are rhetorical and added only for dramatic effects anyway :P)

What I’m trying to say is that I’ve had enough. I’m closed to comments and suggestions for now. I’m doing it my way whether (they think) it is right or not. Whether it pleases anybody or not. And if I ever decide to force myself into something and actually end up killing myself, I know that I’ll die trying, and I’ll die in honor and respect for myself.

‘You say they create their own reality,’ said Veronika, ‘but what is reality?’

‘It’s what the majority deems it to be. It’s not necessarily the best or the most logical, but it’s the one that has become adapted to the desires of society as a whole.’

Veronika Decides to Die

Are Humans Really Monogamous?

I have been questioning the monogamy of human being for so long. Not that I’m a victim of a polygamous family or anything, but there are just so many things around me that often leads to that one question:
“Are humans monogamous creatures after all?”

I once took the Animal Behavior class back in university. It’s interesting that knowing animal behavior can actually give better knowledge and understanding about our OWN behavior in everyday life. One of my favorite subjects – obviously – is the mating system.

Apparently male species get more advantages by doing a polygynous mating system, while females get more advantages by practicing polyandry. The thing with these creatures is, they do it all for the sake of wider genetic inheritance or better parental care. The males will have benefits when inseminating multiple females where their genetic codes are more widely inherited, while females will have better care for the children since there is more than 1 male protecting her and her children.

Now what happens in humans is quite different since we are one of those rare creatures who have sex just to gain pleasure. We don’t really think about gene flows or child nursing that much when we decide to have multiple partners or when we decide to cheat. It’s all about pleasure, fun, satisfaction. Having more than one partner will certainly keep us happy, flexible, and unattached wouldn’t it? That way we’ll always be assured that somebody is there for us. If not one, then there’s the other(s).

One of my favorite Indonesian authors, Dewi Lestari, once wrote on her book, Filosofi Kopi.

Jika kau ingin satu, maka jangan ambil dua. Karena satu menggenapkan, tapi dua melenyapkan.

The translation would be something like:

If you want one, then don’t take two. Because one completes, while two vanishes.

I had always been able to relate to those words. But never as much as now. And now I have gained a new belief about humans who decide to be “faithful” to many partners. Those who feel superior thinking they can conquer more than one while others may have none. Those people, they need to realize that having two doesn’t make them own more. Keeping two is rather a way of undervaluing themselves, hurting others, and leaving themselves with absolute emptiness. Absolutely nothing. And there’s not even genetic benefits nor better child nurturing in this case.

So when you decide to be a so-called alpha male, or wanna be adored as a queen bee, make sure that you’re strong enough to make it on your own. Cos in the end, owning two will do nothing but vanishes everything.

The Witch of Portobello, by Paulo Coelho

Despite the fact that I got quite terrified reading some parts of it alone, the book is just perfectly written – yet again – by the master of writing, Paulo Coelho. Being an open-minded Muslim (Amen :P), I didn’t see this book as anything misleading or brain washing. The message was simply wider than just those religious point of views.

Compared to the world wide hit, The Alchemist, I find this book a lot more universal and a bit less personal. Another meaningful book full of enlightening answers to philosophical life questions, completed with discussions of one my most recent obsessions, the Law of Attraction (also what the book Quantum Ikhlas is all about).

When we’re interested in something, everything around us appears to refer to it (the mystics call these phenomena “signs”, the sceptics “coincidence”, and psychologist “concentrated focus”..


You are what you believe yourself to be. ..Don’t be like those people who believe in “positive thinking” and tell themselves that they’re loved and strong and capable. You don’t need to do that, because you know it already. And when you doubt it – which happens, I think, quite often at this stage of evolution – do as I suggested. Instead of trying to prove that you’re better than you think, just laugh. Laugh at your worries and insecurities. View your anxieties with humour. It will be difficult at first, but you’ll gradually get used to it.


After all, what is happiness?
Love, they tell me. But love doesn’t bring and never has brought happiness. On the contrary, it’s a constant state of anxiety, a battlefield, it’s sleepless nights, asking ourselves all the time if we’re doing the right thing. Real love is composed of ecstasy and agony..
I spent a lot of my life looking for happiness; now what I want is joy. Joy is like sex – it begins and ends. I want pleasure. I want to be contended, but happiness? I no longer fall into that trap.


I sought out the people I used to enjoy a drink with after work. Most of them have left, and those who have stayed complain all the time about a constant feeling of insecurity. I walked past some of my old haunts, and I felt like a stranger, as if nothing there belonged to me anymore. The worst of it was that my dream of one day returning gradually disappeared when I found myself back in the city where I was born. Even so, I needed to make that visit. The songs of exile are still there in my heart, but I know now that I’ll never again live in Lebanon. In a way, the day I spent in Beirut helped me to a better understanding of the place where I live now, and to value each second that I spend in London.

Quantum Ikhlas: Gabungan IQ, EQ, dan SQ yang Fenomenal


Judul Buku: Quantum Ikhlas
Penulis: Erbe Sentanu
Penerbit: Elex Media Komputindo
Harga: (sekitar) Rp. 70.000

Pikiran dan perasaan, mana yang posisinya lebih tinggi?

Selama ini saya menganggap bahwa segala sesuatu pasti didasari oleh alasan2 ilmiah, oleh karena itu saya selalu beranggapan bahwa pikiran mengendalikan segalanya. Jika kita memikirkan hal2 sedih dan depresif, maka perasaan semacam itu yang akan muncul, dan begitu juga sebaliknya.

Bahkan saat jatuh cinta pun, sesungguhnya getaran2 dalam dada itu muncul sebagai akibat kerja senyawa2 kimia di otak kita. Jadi, selama ini menurut saya cinta itu muncul dari mata, NAIK KE OTAK DULU, baru turun ke hati. Humans are all about the brains and the chemicals in it. PERIOD.

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