Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Earth over Water/Mind over Matter

I was thinking the other day, as I always seem to do, about life in general and my current circumstance in particular. The one thing that struck me as odd, if not enlightening, is the fact that my boredom appears to be intrinsically tied to my ability to learn new things. If I'm stuck (or I feel as if I'm stuck, which are, basically, equivalent circumstances) in a situation where I'm not learning new things, but rather continually applying that which I already know, I grow bored.

I don't just grow bored, rather that's a bit like saying the old man near the sea has a short beard, or the Jack from Jack in the BeanStalk went "up a few steps to get a better view." No, I grow insanely, comprehensively, exhaustively bored out of my skull. Completely to the point where I become submissive, passive, and uninterested in almost everything. This, I believe, is my current state of mind; I've become "mind numb" to all but the most pressing issues.

It has a lot to do with the economic conditions of the last year, as much as it has to do with my own laziness and inability to apply myself. Sure, I've taken to clean out stuff and my surroundings, and it's always good to purge yourself every now and again. But, there's something more brewing here. There's only so much boredom a semi-good mind (like mine) can take before it begins to protest. Before, as Jack says, "something's gotta give."

If you read the I-Ching, it asserts that the universe is nothing more than an endless sequence of random events. Moreso, it infers that the random events may be not so random afterall. Kind of like great marionettes in the sublime puppet show of the cosmos, we are all pulled by puppet strings. Some are just more aware of their tethers than others. If this is the case, you could speculate that as they say, "sometimes you are the pidgeon and sometimes you are the statue" or, specifically, in my case, "sometimes you get to learn new things and something you get to just coast along knowing what you know." The hills and valleys of knowledge have too their plateaus but it's this state of coasting that's left me feeling like I'm endless adrift on the sea of life. A random boat person in search of a far away island paradise, destined to be eaten by sharks.

But, if you believe the I-Ching "puppet theory" on random happenings, you should too believe the I-Ching theory on change. Enjoy your token, Earth over Water, or "that which coasts" while it's yours because we are all but a mere tug of the marionette string away from the only known constant in the puppet show of the cosmos: change. Earth over Water today, Water over Earth tomorrow. As the river flows, the earth changes, as the sands shift, the water rises. Such is the universe according to I-Ching.

I shall enjoy my boredom as best I can, for tomorrow the winds of change shall bring me a bounty of new thoughts to process, and I will then yearn for my prior state of emptiness and clarity. I am only as bored as I think I am and, someday, I may look upon this boredom in a favorable light, recalling with fondness the free time I had and the clear head I could apply to solve new problems. I shall look back and wonder in amazement at how the most pressing issues I had to deal with were unpacking boxes in my home and worrying over frozen food cooking too long in the microwave at work.

By the way, today's frozen lunch cooked to perfection in six minutes and thirty seconds in the microwave at work. Maybe the spell has been broken, the I-Ching was right, change is imminent, and we know that but play along with the game.

Until next time...

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