Monday, January 28, 2013

some words for a monday morning.

Let's kick it off with our main man, Henry David Thoreau:

Above all, we cannot afford not to live in the present. He is blessed over all mortals who loses no moment of the passing life in remembering the past... he has got up early and kept up early, and to be where he is is to be in season, in the foremost rank of time.
from Walking

Are your thoughts in season? What an interesting way of looking at things. 90% of the time, my thoughts are not; they're dragged along from seasons long past or plucked from an unknowable season ahead. And that truly is a source of suffering.

Similarly, I met a new doctor last week who said something I had to write down as soon as the words escaped her lips so that they couldn't slip past my memory: The only reason to to go back into your past is to make better your present. There's no value in going on an archeological dig.

Now, I'm not against introspection (obviously), but that really struck something inside of me. For those of us who look back and see a vast ugliness, or even those who see a sea of lovely with one shipwrecked shell of an ugliness obstructing their view, those words ring true. There's no value in going on an archeological dig if the result is to uncover and ruminate on pain. It only brings that pain back in season, and that's not where it belongs.

I cannot know the whys of what happened in my past. I have to stop comparing my life to others and thinking I must have done something wrong in order to deserve what I've got settled deep down, covered by layers of seasons since. Maybe I can just let those things rest there, without constantly trying to pull them back to the surface.  Maybe I can, bit by bit, learn to keep my mind in season.