Wednesday, December 16, 2009
That's the White House in the background, the Washington Monument looming behind it. And yes I added speckles because the composition looks vaguely Seurat-ish to me.
How and when do you know when you've had too much of a good thing? Sometimes it's easy to understand, as after a too-big dessert when your stomach hurts, after a too-ambitious workout when your body aches (in a bad way). Not to get into details here but I have definitely had too much sex, a happy excess that left me disoriented, shaky, heachachey and flaky. Too much reading causes eyestrain and too much work of any kind locks the shoulder muscles or lower back so tightly that the overworker can barely move. You get what I mean, right?
Wanting too much of anything carries with it a kind of grasping energy; it's a form of greed, no matter how noble the object of desire might be. In the old Norse myths, Odin trades his eyeball for wisdom. For heaven's sake! Talk about grasping. No offense to Father Odin, by the way. He's a God after all, but still sets a bad example if you ask me.
Lately I've been thinking that even wonderful qualities, like curiosity, can come up too strongly. The inquisitive mind that ideally shapes itself as a wondrous openness, can become a grasping. For example, I think of moms reading their kids' journals - spying of all kinds, in fact. Archeologists pillaging (and therefore desecrating) ancient tombs have perhaps overstepped what is healthy in terms of wanting to unravel the mysteries of history.
Yesterday I was wondering about Amma, the hugging saint. I know lots of people who wait all night, when she's in DC, for a chance to hug her. They all say that the hugs are completely genuine. OK. I believe it, I do, and yeah she must be a saint, because if I had to hug 10,000 people all in one sitting, YIKES. Just shoot me! Seriously that would be so awful. Maybe for Amma, 10,000 hugs is OK, but if she had to do 100,000 hugs in one sitting, that would be too much.
Who knows? I wonder about these things, though over time I've realized I don't need to try to understand or figure out everything, oh no. I am an essentially curious person, but I no longer want to be curious about everything all the time, 24/7, because that's too much. It's not healthy, not satisfying. Really it is not. Curiosity killed the cat! Oh yeah.