Friday, January 28, 2005

Thanks Henry.

"Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them."
- Henry David Thorea

This quote has stuck with me like my very own thorn in my flesh... since I was young, high school maybe. Who really thinks about these things in high school?

I want to live an extraordinary life. Not so I can be above people, not so I can impress God or my family... but simply because I think I was made to live an extraordinary life, and given the option of living a "normal" life and an extraordinary life, I'll choose the latter.

But I am so quickly pulled back to the ground every day, in good ways and in bad ways. I am reminded of my own limitations... so i seek to either overcome them or become familiar with them in order to understand myself. I want to do that which is good, but I find that I simply cannot sometimes.

Much of the Indian (eastern) world believes that life is as it is for a reason and that we should learn to embrace it, surrender to it, not master it. The western mindset is so the opposite: "you can control your own destiny". Talking with Rhianon, Heath, and Holly last night over dinner about how Michaelangelo's David epitomized that sentiment in the Renaissance era. In fact, that is what birthed the modern world, secular humanism, and yes, Henry David Thorea eventually. His transcendentalism would arise out of this, "we can do anything we want or believe in" mentality.

So I am quagmired in thought: is an extraordinary life found in attempting to surrender or attempting to control? Or are these the yin and yang of the larger equation?


The Shib said...

Where do you think that want to live an extraordinary life comes from? Cause Ive got it to. It plagues me. Extraordinary by whose standards?

I need to work on patience and letting what happens happen. Apparently good things come from that. I wouldnt know though. Im too busy staying in control.

Deb said...

surrender...hands down

Hopi Elder's Prophecy:
"Here is a river flowing now very fast.
It is so great and swift,
that there are those who will be afraid,
who will try to hold on to the shore,
they are being torn apart and will suffer greatly.
Know that the river has its destination.
The elders say we must let go of the shore,
push off into the middle of the river,
and keep our heads above water.
And I say see who is there with you and celebrate.
At this time in history we are to take nothing personally,
least of all ourselves, for the moment we do,
our spiritual growth and journey come to a halt.
The time of the lone wolf is over.
Gather yourselves.
Banish the word struggle from your attitude and vocabulary.
All that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration.
For we are the ones we have been waiting for."
Having experienced a dramatic shift from control to surrender, I can tell you without doubt that we are meant to surrender. (in my opinion)