Then at lunch, I was thinking about it! (I crack myself up)
I was thinking today about the world and how we all think. The one thing that came to mind was our fascination with the black and white. I don't literally mean the colors, but in situations. Something I notice in all areas, fitness, nutrition, religion, politics, we, as humans, LOVE to put things into categories. We love to live in absolutes. And maybe I shouldn't say we, maybe I should just say I and the things I notice. I have spent an entire lifetime trying to define life by categories and then morphing myself (depending on who I'm around) to fit into that category.
Because I'm not sure if I'm making any sense, I'll try to use a concrete example.
A Runner - Ok, I've decided I want to take up running so what does that mean to me? that means I need to subscribe to Runner's World, I need to get up at 5 am and run, I need to buy some Saucony's, I need to get some running tights, I need to "look the part".
I'm not saying that those things aren't necessary to run, I'm saying that in order to participate in that activity, I have to do as the runners do.
Another example - a yogi
This is so perfect and it's also hilarious because it's poking fun at us yogis!
I may or may not have said at least 5 things in this video.
Let me give yet another example -
Religion - this may not happen in other areas, but in the South, it's like a battle on who's the better Christian. You can be a Christian, but you can't be Catholic, you have to be Baptist. Or you can't be Baptist, you MUST be Methodist, so on and so forth.
I bring this up because as I get older, the more I realize a couple of things -
1) Just because I say it, believe it, think it doesn't make it true. It's amazing what a little perspective brings. Our belief systems are developed through our life experiences and everyone's perception is going to be shaped differently. How can one determine which perspective is right? Who am I to say that I'm right and someone else is wrong just because they're different?
2) It's not always black and white. There may be two apparent options in front of you, but does that necessarily mean they're the only two options. Just because you're not a democrat, does that automatically make you a republican? Just because you're not paleo, doesn't always make you a vegetarian.
So how does that tie into my meditation? I am just realizing that what's in front of me isn't always what's real. And just because I believe it doesn't mean it's true. So when I'm getting ready to make a judgement on some person, some thing, some situation, can I pause and think, is there another side to this that would make my answer different? And if I don't know the answer, is it something I should even judge?
I have this sign posted in my cubicle (I'm sure people think I am nutty) that I found on pinterest -
Really, when I ask myself these questions before posting on Facebook, I almost always end up not posting :). I've found that most things in life just aren't super necessary to say :). I can't promise that I don't still post anyway, but at least I'm thinking of it.
So what can I take from all of this retrospection - maybe some other New Years Resolutions -
1 - balance is key. Nothing is absolute so somewhere in the middle is always the answer. there are two sides to every story and the truth is somewhere in between
2 - Silence is golden. Anyone that knows me knows that silence is not anywhere near my goal but that I should maybe just think a little more before speaking and hopefully, from that, my words will be kind, helpful and maybe loving.
3 - For every answer I have, someone else thinks differently.