Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Living A Life Of Poetry

When I left home this morning it was overcast and slightly cool. The morning air was refreshing as I walked through the park to my office. By midday the sun was shining and the day was warm. Before lunch I went outside for a short walk and a few minutes of simply sitting in the sun enjoying the moment. Most of my workday I was quietly sitting at my desk and working while quiet Zen music played in the background. It was very relaxing and peaceful. In my peacefulness I decided to take a Tao break and read today's thought. In my peaceful mood, it was quite an eye opener.

Banish uncertainty.
Affirm strength.
Hold resolve.
Expect death.

Great! On a day when I am finally feeling some life within me, I am told to expect death. Gee, that's uplifting! What is the Tao trying to tell us today? According to the commentary it is telling us to make our own destiny and do not falter in our resolve to fulfill it. Our resolve to tread the path of life is our best asset. Death is unavoidable but let it not be from a loss of will but rather because our time is over. Overcome the obstacles of life and realize its potential. We will know happiness and we will know sadness. This is the nature of human existence and we must accept this. Everyday our lives grow shorter by twenty four hours. The time to make achievements becomes more precious. We must fulfill everything we want in life and then release our will at the moment of death. Our lives are a creation that dies when we die. When we release our lives and give up our individuality we merge completely with Tao. However, until that moment arrives, we should create the poetry of our lives with toughness and determination.

At first glance all of this may seem a little morbid. Who wants to think about death? I don't think this is really about death. It's about living life to it's fullest. We all waste many of the days of our lives. We get lost in our bad moods, our lethargy, our wandering, and our failed dreams. I like the Tao's idea of "creating the poetry of our lives". We can live very happy and poetic lives without necessarily having great achievements in the eyes of the world. I admit that it is challenging to live life as poetry. So many of us feel bored and trapped in routines and obligations. Somehow, and it's not easy, we must find freedom in the demands of life. The poetry of life is what Thomas Merton saw as a "hidden wholeness". The poetry of life is not always visible. It often lurks right below the surface. If we are to live poetic lives we make see life with the eyes of an artist. We must see below the surface. We must see the "hidden wholeness" of our destiny.

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