It would be nice to have more time and money to be able to stop and smell the roses. Also falling into The Flow during activities would be nice, too. Unfortunately, with the tedium of everday life, job and chores, it can get difficult.
--The_Lex Wed Jul 30 13:18:37 2008
That's all true... though it's not the kind of lesson I draw from this poem.
Most of our lives are comfortable enough, yet not free from the heartbreaks and sadness that scars everyone's time here, that it would be curmudgeonly to not assume a large level of gratitude and make an effort to appreciate it.
--Kirk Wed Jul 30 14:15:04 2008
Depends on your definition of comfortable. At least eight hours a day I'm engaged in activity that I couldn't give a shit about other than the abstract/academic part of it. Between five to seven (hopefully eight or ten on the weekends) hours, I'm not conscious to enjoy life. About two hours is spent getting ready for the eight hours of work. And plenty of time is generally wasted inefficiently because I can't dedicate energy to worthwhile activities because of having to get ready for other things. About two or three hours goes to chores everyday. That leaves about one or two hours left for me to (a) enjoy life or (b) work on my career for the future (aka bachelors project), so I can have more free time to enjoy life and less time doing work I don't care about.
So. . .I guess it could depend on your perspective, and that's part of the beauty of poems.
--The_Lex Wed Jul 30 14:50:19 2008
But alas, with more free time, it allows one to have more exposure to personal "existential" suffering.
--The_Lex Wed Jul 30 14:52:09 2008
But yeah, every once in awhile, I do get blown away by existence and can appreciate my chance to participate in it.
--The_Lex Wed Jul 30 15:10:54 2008
Even though, yeah, compared to homeless people, families with plenty of children and not enough money, people actually struggling to pay bills and having to make decisions between the electric or heating or health insurance, people getting abused, yeah, I have it pretty comfortable.
I generally don't like to think so comparatively, though. Sure, I can see that they live in unfortunate situations, and I would like to help people, if it's within my power. Nonetheless, I like to think and work with my emotions, states of consciousness, etc. etc.
If my sense of life depended on comparing my state with other peoples' states, I would feel a lot more ambivalence rather than hope and, shall I say it, ambition.
--The_Lex Wed Jul 30 16:03:01 2008
I've been thinking about what you were writing here.
I was gonna say something about Zen, and acceptance, and when you're chopping wood, chop wood, and when you're drawing water, draw water, and when you're doing crappy office stuff, do crappy office stuff. But maybe I usually like my job more than you like yours, so it's not fair for me to say.
--Kirk Thu Jul 31 10:37:24 2008
This has made for good conversation & had gotten me to thinking about a lot of stuff. Thanks!
I can often feel ambivalent about Zen, but to get into that would require much more research on my part and probably very detailed "arguments."
--The_Lex Thu Jul 31 12:03:19 2008
Yeah, there are pluses and minuses to Zen-ish outlooks and I never feel truly qualified to comment on most of it.
I think it's hightime someone did for Shinto what California Zen did for Zen.
--Kirk Thu Jul 31 12:18:55 2008
I guess my main criticism is that it can engender a learned helplessness and encourage a trust in arbitrary leadership and reasoning at times. But that kind of criticism can probably get leveled at any religion and/or ideology, especially the more radical ones.
--The_Lex Thu Jul 31 13:00:44 2008
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