Tuesday, April 30, 2013

dying to get it right

ONLY in the last three or four years have I slowly begun to learn that finishing the puzzle of life is not the goal. I don't know the shape or design even of my own life-puzzle, and any rush I might be in to finish it will result in a shocking realization! *

Believing that I possess definitive answers to anything is like forcing pieces that almost fit into places they don't belong, distorting the image of the puzzle and possibly damaging the pieces. I have done this often in my life, desperate to understand and feel like I have control. Paying someone to finish the puzzle for me is desperation at best and fraud no matter how I look at it.

One verse of the Tao Te Ching states, "no good without evil." I spent my college years in a religious cult. I had a picture of Satan on my dartboard, figuratively speaking. The devil had to be defeated for God to reign...even though all the songs I sang in our worship services said that Satan was already defeated, God was the Great Champion, and...I don't know, whatever else we sang to give ourselves reassurance that we were on the "right side."

Funny thing: no one seemed to grasp that we would not even be a God-following cult if we didn't have the devil to show God’s goodness versus Satan’s evil. Instead we would have had ascribe everything--things we liked and things we did not like--to one divine being. The same God I thanked for getting me into college would be the same God who gave my mom cancer and killed her before she could see me graduate. 

I don’t start to dive into this duality exercise until I try to understand. Why did my girlfriend and I break up? I doubt myself. I doubt her. I place blame, saying that one of us was not enough or did not give enough. If I am the one who gets dumped, then I look to place blame in my hurt state. I don’t know what it accomplishes other than to show me how little I know and how much I seek to make some kind of sense, in the hope that it will make the negativeness of it go away. 

And, yet, I wouldn’t have to think of the situation as negative if I hadn’t considered a different outcome to be positive.  

*Technically, finishing the life-puzzle...is dying.

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