Tuesday, December 14, 2010

when all else fails....just STOP

Try as we might, we often find ourselves running 'round in circles, like the  adorable little puppy chasing his tail. Only it's usually not as much fun {for us, that is. the puppy is havin' a grand ol' time.}So why do we do it? Why do we keep dashing about here and there, growing our frustration and getting further away from what it is we're trying to do?

I'm guessing it's just old school stuff. In other words, it's what we were taught to do. There are too many adages to list in one place, but a few that come quickly to mind are:

"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again."
"Only quitters lose."
"No one ever said life was easy." (oh yea. that one really trips my trigger.)
"Rome wasn't built in a day." (and look how that worked out for 'em.)

You get the point. We learned all this crap from those who learned it from those who learned it....and on it goes. Like fear, ethics are learned, and not always for the higher good. More often than not, those things keep us from forging our own new paths to the lives we most want to live. More often than not, they just don't work for us anymore. But we're a stubborn bunch {humans, that is}. We hold on tight to those lessons we learned, never considering there might just be a better way.


It's kinda like trying to use a map that was made 100 years ago. Chances are pretty good that old map isn't going to have the new streets, landmarks, buildings, etc. that are now part of the geography. Walk into any visitors center and see for yourself. I have an Atlas that's only 5 years old, and it's way outdated. There are more highways, more rural routes, more inner-city streets, more of everything (and some roads that just aren't there anymore because they're now home to gated communities or some such). So why in the world would you use a map that's outdated? You wouldn't if you wanted to find your way without a ton of hassle.

Same goes for our beliefs. I see people struggling to grasp things from "the bible"; the one book that's supposed to tell everyone precisely how to live. The ONE. Are you kidding me?

First of all, that book has been rewritten so many times it's a wonder there's anything left of the original messages that were meant to guide (I'm thinking there are NONE left. But that's just me.) The book in its original form conveniently disappeared eons ago. AND it was originally written in Hebrew (or so I'm told). Translations from that language to English are, at best, shaky. Even the most renowned scholars will tell you that it's likely that most of what is read today is nowhere near what the original texts held. Still, stubborn humans continue to argue the point: the bible is the book to live by.


I don't consider myself a biblical scholar by any stretch. But I've read and studied and researched enough to know this: if you want to live your best life right now, you need to find those things that resonate with you. If the story of Adam and Eve makes no sense to you, ditch it. If the story of evolution does, keep it. If you think we're all just here by some huge cosmic accident, go with it. If you think you were destined for some great thing, keep on it. No matter what you believe, so long as it makes you feel good...deep in your gut...just do it.

It is said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. I buy that one, lock, stock and barrel. I don't see any good coming from banging my head against a wall I have no desire to bust down. When something comes up that makes me try so hard that I'm bleeding over it, I just have to take a step back and ask myself, "what in the world are you doing? STOP. STEP AWAY. BREATHE!"

And after I'm done cleaning off the blood and icing the ache, I sit my silly self down, close my eyes and listen. I listen for whatever is trying to get my attention. I listen for my own guidance, not some mangled stories that were interpreted by some power-hungry control freaks. I know my Pop meant well when he told me to "just keep trying. don't ever quit." But I gotta say Pop, that was then...this is now. Let's get on with it, shall we?

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