Monday 13 August 2012

Living as investing

I don't mean this in the short, medium or long term. I mean this in the ultimate term. This might seem a bit intimidating, but it's what I grew up with. You don't end with a preposition but with your investment. Noun.

Be brutally honest with yourself. What have you tried to get out of being alive? Career, money, sex, reputation, relationship, friendship, recognition, respect, fun...insert your true word(s) here.

I invested in clarity, career and courage. I had thought that love is something understandable, and that by searching, you can find it, but it's not as easy as that. This word is a vague one. C.S. Lewis wrote about the four loves, someone whose name I can't remember but whose book I have wrote about love therapy, and the Bible has plenty of directives, the most helpful one of which, for me, is that "herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He first loved us". Humans aren't the originators, and that's a relief, because we aren't so good at the love activity.

Clarity I needed for survival: I really didn't understand why any individual would go to heaven or hell on the basis of another individual's breakfast, and I was greatly relieved to learn that this perception was apprehension rather comprehension, and thus unnecessary as most perceptions are. Career I sought in terms of learning as much as I could about the freedom you must find in your own heart before pursuing freedom in the human world, and courage was what was required every step of the way, and I am thankful that courage is not merely a determination but essentially a gift.

Just as with financial investment, one's living investment is crucial. It comes back. I love these cryptic sayings because so much is packed into them.

A German engineer was once having breakfast at Saint du Barrys, our guest house. He was alone for breakfast, travelling on his own. He seemed happy enough with his own company, and I was intrigued by his way of talking quietly to himself. I wasn mystified, however, when I heard him mutter, in quite a perturbed way "It goes down on the middle!".

I hovered around the dining room wondering what it could mean, and presently, he pointed to our long dining room table with all the breakfast things, and said again, "See, it goes down in the middle, almost a centimetre". When I bent down, and looked to where his finger pointed, I could see it: the table bent, long, slow, indeed, it went down in the middle.

Well, your investment, it comes back. Maybe in your lifetime, maybe in your children's lifetime, perhaps in your grandchildren's lifetime. But come back it will, and sometimes this realisation terrifies me with its implacability.

Where your heart is, there is your treasure. The "bio" of biofocusing is the stretch of your heart to the more of the most that you desire. The sounds like e.e. cummings, and indeed, he knew about eyes of the eyes opening, ears of the ears hearing, and no doubt, the heart stretching into more of the most that can ever, and then leap on, unbaffled.

The ultimate return is stern. Does it mean living has to be timid, careful, deferential? Those who are under thirty have no idea of what I mean, here. Those who are under fifty and older than thirty had better remember, and  act with courage tomorrow and tomorrow, and those who are under any other age and older than fifty, your courage, and especially the courage of your parents has made the world what it is, and what it needs to be guarded for.

Every living moment is investment in one attitude or another, one kind of energy or another, there's an outcome, and nothing is about just you. The cycle moves, the gift is given, the heart grows in ways unfathomable.

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