Fulcrum

I have some very wise friends. One of them has man­aged to dis­cern and artic­u­late an under­stand­ing of who I am that I, in my sub­jec­tiv­i­ty, can­not. I am too close to myself to see all of me. I have been able to appre­hend bits and pieces, but nev­er com­pre­hend the whole. Some aspects for change have been put to me, in words care­ful­ly cho­sen, but that are essen­tial­ly: Be less sen­si­tive. Be less seri­ous. Take less respon­si­bil­i­ty for oth­ers.

I’ve been pret­ty damn sensitive/serious my whole life, and a respon­si­bil­i­ty-tak­er since about the time my par­ents divorced. The seri­ous & the sar­casm have been an too effec­tive armor for the sen­si­tive. My ten­den­cy to assume con­trol of any sit­u­a­tion has been borne of my arro­gance and impa­tience. If there’s a goal, I don’t have time to wait around while every­one dithers about who should be in charge or how some­thing should be done. I’m about prax­is over ped­a­gogy.

The way this com­bo has played out in my per­son­al life is that it is near­ly impos­si­ble for any­one to get to me. I’ve iso­lat­ed myself, which has only made the sen­si­tive bits more sen­si­tive. I’ve for­got­ten the mean­ing of my favorite piece of the Tao Te Ching on my About page.

The pos­tures and per­for­mances I assume for oth­er peo­ple are a coward’s walk. I have pre­tend­ed so well that I even con­vinced myself. So I am begin­ning the work of remov­ing my armor and accept­ing imper­fec­tion. It’s prob­a­bly going to take awhile.

Kar­ma Repair Kit: Items 1–4

1. Get enough food to eat,
and eat it.

2. Find a place to sleep where it is qui­et,
and sleep there.

3. Reduce intel­lec­tu­al and emo­tion­al noise
until you arrive at the silence of your­self,
and lis­ten to it.

4.

from The Pill ver­sus the Springhill Mine Dis­as­ter by Richard Brauti­gan

From the Tao

from the Tao Te Ching (50):

A per­son comes forth to life and enters into death.
Three out of ten are part­ners of life,
Three out of ten are part­ners of death,
And the peo­ple whose every move­ment leads them to the
land of death because they cling to life
Are also three out of ten.

Now,
What is the rea­son for this?
It is because they cling to life.

Indeed,
I have heard that
One who is good at pre­serv­ing life
does not avoid tigers and rhi­noc­er­os­es
when he walks in the hills;
nor does he put on armor and take up weapons
when he enters a bat­tle.
The rhi­noc­er­os has no place to jab its horn,
The tiger has no place to fas­ten its claws,
Weapons have no place to admit their blades.

Now,
What is the rea­son for this?
Because on him there are no mor­tal spots.