Sand Castles and Streams


In the spirit of writing something down, I will free associate today. Since early March, I have been generating a clear message on the blog almost each day, wondering how long that would last. It was a surprise when it came on, as I had previously only been posting something a few times a month. Like with anything we do, we can never know how long it will continue. I call this the sand castle syndrome (something I stole from awareness writer Robert Rabbin). We build sand castles having no idea when the tide will wash them away.

Speaking of washing away, it has been raining nonstop here now for a few days! I don’t mind rain and in fact love thunder, but I am ready for some warmth and sunshine. Today I have been focused on the work as I always am. I have been aware of the way I value some actions over others, and how silly that is because action is just a single stream of physical movement. How could one moment of that be any more substantial than another? If action (as I have defined it) is only my body in the space, my physical existence, it would be like saying one moment of the moon’s existence was more valuable than another. That is incoherent really. So, it must be with my own being and behavior. Some actions seem more important than others because of our inner and cultural hierarchies of meaning. I play with this, noticing how absurd it is that I believe one moment of my life to be more relevant or necessary than another. It is all necessary, and, being a determinist, I know it is causally necessary. My life of activity is a physical causal stream, one bodily movement transforming into another, all as essential as the rest. This is a huge challenge for us as humans though, as we are so deeply attached to our desires.

As always, I look down at my body to see the movement it is in: the typing on the keyboard, the flipping of a pancake on the stove, the biting into an apple, the driving in my car. I remind myself that I am a physical organism in an ongoing stream of activity. Since we cannot divide time in any real manner (only in our thought process), what I call my “actions” are only a labeling of my bodily movements. All are equal. Thus, no one thing I do can ever be more significant than another. What would that even mean? Could a tree be more productive on one day of its life than another? I guess some could think so, but I do not.

This leaves me in a state of mental peace, even if I began agitated by some gnawing feeling that I was not spending my day in the right way. I do not mean to belittle the reasons we value some things we do over others. Of course, in a society driven by moral codes we hope our behavior pleases our inner mental value system. That is what I call luck. I feel very lucky when my behavior matches my wants. However, I know that even when it does not, I have done the right thing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s