Saturday, July 3, 2010

In Part, An Exploration of Human Nature

Human nature is such a fickle thing, don't ya think?  The ways in which people view such abstract concepts as love, hate, and everything in between can be so fluid.  And, oh my, the reactions these concepts can trigger.  

A close friend of mine is going through a very difficult time at the moment and my heart truly aches for him.  I have never been witness to such intense feelings of despair and pain ... and there is really nothing I can do but to listen.  Even given that, he not much for talking ... He has yet to shed the initial shock that has so greatly, and understandably, affected him.  And it is difficult to say how his healing process may progress.  The intensity with which he is Feeling right now really calls into question the passiveness with which many of us experience our relationships and everyday encounters.  

Like so many others, I have experienced the loss of loved ones, friends, and acquaintances ... and with each loss I experienced such an intensity of "aliveness" (is that even a word???) that it felt almost as a jolt ... a physical tremor affecting of my entire being.  Like a ethereal smack to my psyche screaming  "All you have is now ... Quit bitching ... Life is the Here and Now ... Do Something ..."  with tremendous intensity.  And I would inevitably go days with little to no sleep and this Awareness of all I experienced ... Similar to emerging from a deep, dream-plagued sleep ... 

Not to sound cliche, but something so simple as a deep breath while sitting cross-legged in my backyard among the trees and grass would adopt a newfound sensation of being Alive.  A new appreciation, so to speak.  And I would always be brought back down by the immense weight the subsequent feelings of guilt, sadness, and impatience placed upon my spirit.  It would almost feel as though I had one foot firmly planted in the Now while the other floundered helplessly seeking the comfort and safety of the ground.  I guess what I am trying to say was that each new day, each experience, and feeling possessed its own intensity, its own value, and its own lesson.  Something which I had allowed to slip by unnoticed until the jolt of witnessing another's mortality caused me to gasp and stare wide-eyed at what lay before me.

Watching helplessly as my friend travels this unexpected detour of disappointment and heartbreak, I reluctantly brought back to embrace to the intensity emotions can create ... if we allow it.  It is odd.  There are days, weeks, and sometimes even months where I will plug along without taking notice of the little things ... like so many others do.  But recently, I have made a conscious effort to shun such passiveness ... and since I've done so I have found there is so much more out there that I almost feel guilty for not noticing before.  I don't mean for this to wreak of Hallmark-like-pseudo-spiritualistic-lessons or drip of "words to live by" sappiness ... just a sharing of experience.  I know there are many out there who have probably experienced what I am describing, but just don't talk about it. 

Once again,  I found myself sitting quietly in a corner booth at one of my fave java-joints. Nursing a steaming cup-o-java I allowed my mind a brief respite while being entertained by the conversations taking place around me.  Yes, I guess I was eavesdropping ... oh, like you've never done it before ... 

A couple I had known for years was discussing (heatedly) their "social life" and finances ... Both had actually kept a running, mental tally (independently of the other) of who had suggested What and who had paid for What (like dinner, movie, etc) for the duration of what I guess was months ... What was a point of major, festering contention ...

They had actually been keeping Score!  Instead of concentrating on one another, on being thankful for having one another ... enjoying one another ... they were completely betraying their calm, lovey-dovey facade and openly arguing over who sprung for the last movie ... the tension was obviously born of much more ... but they were immersed in constructing their individual defenses in preparation for the inevitable battle their next "outing" would bring.

I've always been raised that if you truly care (love, adore, even like) the person whom you are with, you help one another ... that there is no check-sheet or scorecard to be concerned with ... and if there is, there is a problem.  You don't put one another down, you do not abuse or otherwise hurt the other person ...

But, too, you have to consider I was hatched and stashed under a rock for years ... only to emerge in time to learn that the armor of the remaining Knights is rusted and dented and that there is no such thing as happily ever after ... but to go there would involve plunging into the proverbial rabbit hole and I am not dressed for the occasion.  

I don't mean to lull you into a daze of boredom ... I guess I just felt the need to put these thoughts "out there" ... I find it odd that people don't often appear to take the time to feel the moment ... Always in a hurry to get to Later ... And it is so elusive ... the infamous Later ... Are we there yet??  Are we there yet??

Feelings of selfishness, immediate gratification, defensiveness, and offensiveness are felt with as much, if not more, intensity as loss, sadness, and desperation.  And they are considered normal ... commonplace. My little exploration here of bits and pieces of human nature, in some circles, would be deemed the product of a failed substance-induced escapist attempt at rationalizing that which is only worthy of a Disney flick or bedtime story ... essentially completely void of any societal or realistic "moral" value.  

Strange isn't it?  Wonder, awareness, and contentment are left just offstage ... only to participate in this wondrous production as Bit Parts ... A follow-up to the intermittent Big Bangs that shatter concentration ( or as we begrudgingly call them "trauma," "loss,", etc ...) ... A fleeting reminder of one's humanness ... Sometimes a one-liner offering the audience a good chuckle ... before taking its bow.  

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