Sunday, May 13, 2012

earth as my witness

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. 
I will meet you there.
~ Rumi

How do you know that you’re right?

There is the “right” of righteousness, of being aligned with what is good.  This engenders feelings of superiority, of wanting to assert one’s moral authority.
There is the “right” of knowing, of being aligned with what is true.  This engenders feelings of humility, of wanting to serve what is true.

The first flatters the ego but is often blind to its own self-indulgence.  This is why righteousness can turn violent.  My race, religion, politics, beliefs, etc. being the “right” ones, justify my imposing them on you.

The second empowers in a different sense.  There is no need to impose the truth on anyone or anything because it is between you and the world, a fit that requires no external validation.  There is peace, and a kind of grace.

To be right in the moral sense belongs to the sphere of good and evil and is relative to one’s particular dogma, culture or creed.  To be right in the knowing sense is beyond good and evil, yet is the real touchstone of one's humanity. 

Saturday, May 5, 2012

the flight from conversation*

All men should strive to learn before they die
what they are running from, and to, and why.
~ James Thurber

Sad that connection is sought at the expense of conversation, sad because it fills us up in little sips but never satisfies. Connection is autistic but conversation a form of intercourse weaving two-into-one. The first may be pleasurable, titillating; the second may be questionably pleasurable though, when it works, what bliss!

I do not think we seek connection over conversation as a quick fix or security blanket that we keep “always-on/always-on-you” as a transitional love object substituting for the real thing. In connection, we aren’t seeking to fill the void (I don’t think) but seeking to avoid it. We are all lonely and desire relationship. When we reach for connection instead of conversation I think it’s because reaching deeper into ourselves is too painful and what we find too shameful to share.

To converse you have to unravel the threads, come undone. It’s a risk: I might be dropped like a baby on the ground! The flight from conversation… the fear of flight more like it!

The fear goes as deep as the fear of death. If one does not feel secure, or have some kind of guarantee against rejection and abandonment,some kind of safety net, conversation ain’t gonna happen. 

* inspired by this article