Wednesday, June 07, 2006
To Forgive is Divine
Sometime in life, we’re taught to plan ahead. We organize our days, we schedule our vacations, we budget our finances and overall, we’re working for our future.
As wise and necessary as planning may be, when does it all become too much?
We compose speeches, proof read our e-mails and draw up a plan B in case our original plans fail.
We lose faith in ourselves and our spontaneity and sooner or later every step we take feels calculated and superficial.
The silent disease we all suffer from of the new age is: thinking too much.
Women were already known for this phenomenon but lately it seems to affect anyone with a conscience;
Because we want to do things right;
Because we don’t want to make mistakes.
We read books, surf the net and see shrinks in search of the answers that will perfect our way of thinking. The individual way of life has been lost to the “right” way of life defined by society. We seek people that think the same way and we end up falling into peer groups with those that share the same beliefs.
In my quest for all the answers, I’ve come to but one:
There’s my perspective and there’s everyone else’s perspective and the truth is somewhere in between.
The right or wrong is defined by the perspective by which you choose to see things by. And therefore, the correct answer becomes relative and perfection unattainable unless you can satisfy every point of view.
One of the most important career lessons I learnt was taught to me by my first employer when I screwed up a third time that week. Instead of being reprimanded, I was told with a smile that only those that don’t work don’t make mistakes.
Dumbfounded, I went home and meditated on the subject only coming to the conclusion that his screws were looser than I thought.
It only dawned on me later in life when a lazy colleague of mine that did very little got promoted, that his promotion was based on the fact that he made few mistakes. He made few mistakes because he did very little work. It also occurred me that if I didn’t try and risk making mistakes, I’d never gain the experience I needed to gain the knowledge I seeked.
Experience… it can’t be bought or taught.
You may look at a cherry and know that it’ll be juicy by the colour and texture of its skin. Its size, roundness and firmness may add to your suspicions and its sweet smell may convince you to bet on it… but what good is this knowledge if you don’t take a bite? If you don’t gently pull it off its stem with your lips and sink your teeth into its middle. To feel the juice spill onto your taste buds that sends the message to your eyes to shut on its way to your brain that savours the moment and spreads the pleasure through your body, right down to your toes.
A wise man said: seek not the man with the knowledge; instead seek the man with experience.
The most fruitless activity known by man is worrying, it resolves nothing. We waste a great percentage of our thoughts, trying to control future moments that we may not even get to live… all in the name of doing things right. We try to program our minds and feelings as easily as we organize our day and then torture ourselves when things don’t work out the way we plan.
A cowboy walked past me today as I imagined he would, sooner or later.
I could tell you how I’d planned on feeling,
I can tell you what I told myself I was feeling.
And then there’s how I felt.
Knowledge can never fully prepare you for the impact of the experience of the moment.
Last week I was hard on myself for having made a mistake. My friends were kind enough to share their comments with me and thanks to their perspectives, I altered mine. Perhaps I didn’t learn the lesson I was supposed to the first time around, perhaps the same situation was meant to teach me a different lesson. Which ever the reason which lead me to make the same mistake twice (third time round to be exact), I’m proud of the intention behind it and I’m ready to try again. Maybe I’ll make the same mistake a fourth time, or maybe I’ll get it right this time and the mistake will only have been in the timing… either way, I won’t find out unless I try to look at it from another angle, and take the risk again.
Nothing shows forgiveness like giving it another chance.