Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Forks, Flies, and Not Having Vertigo

I had a rough time in the kitchen yesterday. It was going to be a very late lunch, this salad I was preparing. Then a large fly charged in, all buzzy and full of going nowhere, raging against the glass with vim and vigor until I opened the window and shooed him out. I cast secret aspersions after his hairy insect rear into the yard; you see, it's the same fly every time, I know it, he finds his way in somehow and comes into the kitchen like this just to, well, bug me (but then again, they all look the same to me).

Moments later, I set my fork down for a second, and it catapulted out and onto the floor, cascading salad in its wake. Faugh! More aspersions; this particular type of flatware has been designed with disproportionately heavy handles. Switching to a decidedly better fork, I pondered balance.

Good balance isn't about everything being equal--I think we know that, most of us anyway, but sometimes we like to say otherwise when it's funny or convenient or appealing--no, balance is about the impact of things, the forces they exude. So eating equal amounts of spinach leaves and Funfetti cupcakes doesn't constitute a well-balanced diet (sure, you could say that this is due to an inequality of "things," i.e. nutrients; but we don't need the same amount of every nutrient, either, because they work differently in our bodies, which is my point); and having psychotic thoughts half the time and happy thoughts the other half doesn't give you a well-balanced personality.

What about personal balance, anyway? It seems like so much of the time, I have this superficial "balance," but really that just means I'm all over the map (once again, diversity isn't always ideal; but that's an essay of its own). Part of the problem is that not everything is meant for equilibrium--things grow, they progress, and too much or the wrong kind of balance can hinder, stagnate, preclude forward motion.

So, ironically, if I want to be well-balanced I actually need to pursue some things constantly, recklessly even, and abandon others altogether. (Not the easiest task for people like me, who always want it both ways) Or perhaps it's the other way around: stability is required for all that pursuit and prioritization. I think it's both (see, there I go again), but rather than trying to formulize stability, I want to emphasize the importance of equanimity, specifically, to point out that it's hard to get anywhere without a composing force. An anchor, if you will. A Rock. When you're running circles around yourself, you pretty much stay in the same place, and getting upset over flying forks and flies is just wasting energy.

Speaking of going in circles, I need to put an end to this. So here are some verses:

Philippians 4
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 8Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.


thatoneguy said...

Hmm, why did the font get so small?

rawster said...

Great post...

And that verse - you know I've read it a bunch of times, but today I read it and realized it's a Rx for peace.

And usually I think of peace as in the opposite of war and struggle and something tangible. But today I see it as the opposite of me; somewhat intangible. Lately this is what I need as I struggle with being unsatisfied with my life. I need God's peace.

Thanks for sharing.