Sunday, June 5, 2011

Boxes in the attic

You might wish to argue that point, but I’m not going to let you. For now, I’m going to leave that point simmering (and maybe you too). That notion is too heavy for me to run with on my own. I’ll need to seek the aid of a certain French mathematician a bit further down the road. But right now I’ll distract you with an invitation. Would you care to rummage through the attic of your new digs? Be my guest. Go right ahead and browse.

As you start to explore the Max Headroom upstairs, you’ll come across a group disparate items—things that don’t exactly worry as much as preoccupy me. I’ve stuffed them into boxes labelled: 

  • The way the world is heading
  • The difficulty of trying to absorb everyone’s ideas
  • Wanting to disengage from the predominant culture
  • The burden of possessions
  • Clutter in my living environment
  • Training injuries as I get older
  • The compulsion to do something with my life
  • Having to deal with stuff I don’t want to waste time on
  • Planning for the future
  • Earning a living
  • Dealing with people
  • Maintaining a home and household
  • Gadgets that I depend on but that keep breaking down
  • Not spending enough time on meditation
  • Dealing with a sexual drive

You rock back on your heels and sigh. How deflating. This is not a whole heap of fun.

My apologies. Were you hoping to take your new personality for a test drive? Were you excited to see what it could do? Sorry. I have no extra horses hidden under the bonnet. This model is much like your own—riddled with all sorts of failings. You’re wondering if it’s really a bargain.

But hey, ‘failings’ is a loaded word, like ‘deficiencies’ or ‘imperfections’. Let’s not think in those terms. From personal experience (experiences gained inside the vehicle of which you’re now the driver), what it does when you look down your nose back at yourself—apart from giving yourself eyestrain—is limit what you do. And that won’t do. If you judge yourself lacking, then the effect of that judgement on this make, model and vintage, is to make you abandon the journey before you’ve even set off. And in that case, you might as well toss away the key.

So forget about those boxes. The baggage that I carry isn’t me. 

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