abstraction, doing vs. being

fish in pond, Hocking Hills, OhioThe man who created personalities created a multifaceted self. He was a molish kind of man. At least that’s who he saw himself as at the moment. To others he was many things. Musician. Artist. Cook, Lover, Artist, Musician, Husband, Gardener, Egoist, Queen, queen, bottom, top, philosopher, poet, arrogant, self-absorbed, insecure, jerk, stupid, lazy bum, but always with that ever morphing idea of Self.

And the “instrument” one needs to learn in order to play out the natural grace of living is the body. Grace leads us to our core, the vibrant entity of our bodily existence.

There are two types of animals inside each of us. They are constantly in a fight for our personalities, one could say our souls.

One is greedy, malicious, selfish, lazy, hateful, bitter and leads to a living kind of hell, a numbness which says nothing about your life, or only that you missed the boat. This part never questions why, but just does, in order to get something: power, money, control, revenge. It runs ever faster to escape listening to its heart.

The other is loving, giving, modest, polite, nonjudgmental, honest, grateful, and leads to a graceful peace who’s value is never in question. This part knows that we can never really know why we are here, but also knows that the heart’s quiet voice nonetheless gives a simple answer: love and let love.

The outcome of the battle depends on which one you feed.

Sometimes I feel twisted, writhing with doubts, questioning my faults. Anyone who questions themselves will find faults. But living with grace allows us to notice and smile and be as modest about our weakness as we are our strengths.

According to my massage therapist, we are human beings, not human doings. I liked that idea. Just be.

23 thoughts on “abstraction, doing vs. being

  1. David, you sound perfectly human to me. I have many faults, most of which I refuse to acknowledge. Then I got married and I no longer have to worry about keeping track of them. 🙂

    Peace to you my friend.

  2. Trée- Thanks for making me smile. By the time I saw your comment, I had changed the ending of this post, but I re-instated it to fit your comment, with a bit less angst.

  3. I love that last paragraph. I have found the most peace in my life when I have been able to simply be. I know this to be true. Yet, I resist just being at the alter of doing. I must do, I must achieve, I must accomplish something each day. But all the doing, all the achieving and all the accomplishing has never brought me the same peace as those still, quiet moments, usually early in the morning or very late at night, when there is nothing to do but just be. David, thanks again for another wonderful and thoughtful post. Your blog is nothing short of a treasure. All the best my friend.

  4. Best man in my wedding is gay, a PhD in Chemistry and very, very intelligent and thoughful. He currently has a significant other, but if that ever changes I have a feeling the two of you would find very much in common.

  5. Human beings not human doings. Friendship is a feeling not an action. I, like Trée, like you, find the most of myself when I can just be who I am not do to figure out who others see. The people I know as friends are the ones with whom I forget about who I am when I’m with them and we just get on with being. Your posts make me think . . . and think of you.

  6. HI Liz- So good to see/read you. You always know what I’m saying, and who I am, much more than just what you read of me here. The funny thing is, it’s me who sees myself as almost pitifully disjointed. I don’t think others see it. I think I over-analyze. For that i have this blog. Thanks for being my good, good, good friend, dearest Liz.


  7. I love to just be; that’s why my house looks the way it does. Maybe that’s how you can tell the difference- the “doings” have neat houses.

  8. Betty’s comment makes me think of “Is My House Me?”
    Yes, Betty I think the “doings” have clean houses and Us “beings” have warm places.

  9. We are a very “doing” society. How we “are” inside seems less important than how we act and what we accomplish, whatever the cost to our quality of life. Unfortunately, capitalistic attitudes encourage or even insist we live that way.

    But my point is not so much about doing or not doing. It’s about “being” while you “do”. It’s the difference between goal oriented and quality oriented. How not what.

    Americans don’t know how to relax with quality. We tend to either space out and do nothing or party until we drop. Having coffee with a friend or dinner with a few friends or puttering in the garden or reading a book is still doing something, but something which enhances the quality of our lives.

  10. I think that maybe one thing that our conversations and blogging has taught me. I’ve stopped multitasking and started living slowly. I like my life and myself better. It took awhile to get here, but I understand what your saying. It’s the consummate “less is so much more.” It’s your “fine glass of wine” post. Let’s go sit in the garden and feel life around us. Yes. I do hear you.

  11. Oh Liz- Just reading your comment is one of the happiest moments in blogging for me. I always wonder if I really influence anyone. Yes, it’s about depth and quality rather than speed and quantity. Thank you. Thank you. I’ve also grown because of you.

  12. David,
    Good post. Good comments…thanks. If I may simply amplify what has already been said…my ideal is to let my doing be informed by being, that is, all doing comes, whether consciously or not, from being. One of the main difficulties is maintaining awareness in this present moment of now, of source (of being) whatever one chooses to call it, God, Goddess, Gaia, Spirit or whatever. As Neale Donald Walsche put it in ‘Conversations with God’; “remember who you really are and be that!” St. Paul said to “walk in the Spirit”
    (who you really are) and the doing will naturally arise from that state of consciousness.
    Keep up the good writing.

  13. Concerning your question left on one of my posts in case you didn’t get back that way; Check this out and see if it’s what you’re looking for: http://www.wmitchell.com/book.html
    W Mitchell, inspirational and motivational, keynote speaker is author of It’s Not What Happens To You, It’s What You Do About it, one of the top keynote speakers in the world and a presenter with lasting content and substance. … Happens To You, It’s What You Do About It”

  14. Thanks, Ron. Sometimes the bushes get in the way of my view and I can’t see where I’m going. Now I can look forward to fleshing out that idea (from the quote) as it was intended.

  15. “living with grace allows us to notice and smile and be as modest about our weakness as we are our strengths”

    David, that is so elegantly put and says so much about the kind of subtle balance we need to carry with us as much as we can.

  16. What a cracking good tale to have told – thought-provoking and inspiring. You’ve given me much to ponder with this one! x

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