Thursday, May 2, 2013

To do or to be...Is there a choice?

I have always been an optimist.  Choosing to view things from a “higher perspective” gives me comfort; for me, it’s simply a matter of well-being. 
Although lately, I’ve succumbed to the lower view of things, that place where you give your power away to external sources and allow it to define who you are, where the pessimist resides.  Where fear is rationalized and made “true”, in favor of an examination of what the cause of pain and numbness might be.
Currently, there is an over-abundance of activity in my environment that is not allowing me to stop and restore. Western lifestyle is so intent on “doing”.  Somehow, if you are not “undertaking something” you are misjudged in not very pleasant ways. 
Schooling is tremendously wrought with the idea of “doing”.  Somehow, somewhere, along the line, it was made a requirement that if you were not outwardly or visibly doing something you were not “learning”, there was no productivity. 
Nevertheless, always doing something does not promote choice.  Never stopping disables you from choosing the next step, or choosing to radically shift your view and innovate. 
Never stopping makes learning a have to, not a want to.  There is an intricate, delicate yet powerful connection between success and doing the things you feel the want to do.  There is renewable and sustainable energy available in that direction to fuel your desire and capacity, while doing something you cannot find a need, desire or want for, results in an overexertion and depletion of already limited resources.  There rarely is inner joy and well-being when we force ourselves to do something we are not “feeling”.
Being is an essential component of creativity.  In many non-western cultures it is said, “God speaks to us in the gaps between our thoughts”.  Well, if you don’t train your rational brain to stop, it will never cease the (annoying) chatter of how many things we need to do before we can stop.  Inspiration, the muse, God, or whatever relationship you consider with the divine will never develop, leaving you no choice, but to be a pessimist.
Helen Keller visited me when I finally stopped to restore.  I remembered her precious thoughts: “No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars or sailed to an uncharted land”.  Dream, wonder, imagine.
Simply being, without doing allows us to reconnect with the beauty, power, strength and unlimited source of love that lies at the core of our being.  Isn’t that the true reason we are alive, to learn to love ourselves, and others better? How might we weave that into our daily schooling routines?

1 comment:

  1. Your thoughtful and provocative post caused me to recall an On Being with Krista Tippett:

    It's a beautiful conversation about being in the moment.