July 22nd. I am currently sitting in a Pizza Hut in the rural south.

The Pizza Hut I am at appears to be only one of two decent eateries in town. It’s also clear that this location is ad hoc town meeting place.  After noticing I was using an Apple MacBook Pro, a local patron called, “Hey, we believe in ‘Made in the USA’ equipment.”

“I’m sorry?” looking up to clearly hear.

Pointing to my computer, he restated, “We believe in made only in America products.”

“Oh, I am sorry,” I stated. “I did not realize there were good computers made solely in the U.S.”

“Sure there is. I have a Hewlett Packard. Good Ol’ American.”



“It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles. Then the victory is yours. It cannot be taken from you, not by angels or by demons, heaven or hell.”


When thinking about the story above, I kept reiterating that to conquer myself I must conquer my own mind. From a personal perspective, I wanted to note the man’s folly by simply noting that almost all good computers, including HP, were in fact manufactured overseas.  In the end, I lived in the moment and allowed my own ignorance to go. There was simply no point in belittling him in front of his peers or family.

We all must control our thinking. Our thoughts cannot be tossed to and fro like the waves of the sea. Some will actually think, “I can’t control my thoughts, if a thought comes, it comes.” To that I say, you may not be able to stop a bird from flying over your head, but you can certainly stop him from building a nest in your hair.

Dismiss thoughts that are contrary to the life you desire to live. Buddha said, “It is a man’s own mind, not his enemy or foe that lures him to evil ways.”