I’m going to attempt a response to one of my writing partner’s recent articles here. I doubt I’ll do justice to probably the most beautiful piece Katherine Tandy Brown has written for Wholly Holistics, but it’s worth a shot. Here goes:
Balance is a nice thing.
A laudable goal for when we feel all out of control. Balance is defined as a condition in which different elements are equal or in the correct proportions. How often is life actually like this? I mean, praying for and seeking balance is an awesome undertaking. And I do mean awesome by its literal definition here that most people don’t even know, especially if you grew up in the totally rad 80s. Awesome is defined as “causing fear.”
Now that we’ve gotten our Webster’s dictionary lessons out of the way, what’s my point? Well, perhaps we don’t know what we’re asking for when we ask for balance in our lives. The Angel of Balance can be a fickle bitch from our human perspective as she sorts out the things that cause unbalance in our lives and humanity, as a whole. She may decide she needs to balance without prejudice. Think, “Why do the electronics in the house always eff up at the ‘wrong’ time?” On a larger scale, the Great Depression and WW2 are bookended with the roaring 20s and the prosperity brought on by the Baby Boomers booming until we hit civil unrest in the 1960s left over from the 1860s. Prayer for balance could mean losing that something or someone you think you can’t live without. You’re better for it in the long run. Short term, it feels like a part of you is missing and you’ll never be the same again. That’s right, you’ll be better, but it certainly doesn’t feel like it.
Another facet to this subject that bears baring is a concept that comes from my favorite Buddhist quote. “Everything in moderation, even moderation.” Wow! And I don’t say, wow very often. There are so many ways of looking at that quote. I’ve been pondering it for about the last twenty years since I read it. I feel that a primary way to squeeze the juice out of it is not to overthink it. Moderate your thinking until you need to concentrate. Moderate your drinking until you need to blow it out in celebration. Moderate your TV until you need that Star Trek marathon like humanity needs humpback whales to communicate with phallic alien probes that are putting the pounding to Mother Earth.
Now, we know what it feels like when unbalance shows its ugly face. We know what is meant by the phrase, “He/she is unbalanced.” Throw in other terms like unhinged, cray-cray, manic, unwell (thanks Matchbox 20), off-kilter, etc. That person is a creature ruled by instincts, whims, and desires flitting about leaving a swath of destruction like a wrecking ball. Those same individuals can suck us into their vortex of rationalized chaos if allowed. Of course, from chaos comes order, but it’s best to be at a safe, balanced distance when detonation occurs.
Here’s something to throw a wrench in things, but I feel it’s a necessary component: Can you have true balance without joy? Is the notion of suffering all the way to the bank something we’ve bought into wholesale and erroneously? What do I mean by that? Firstly, it matters more what you feel as I raise the questions, but let’s take eating, for instance. Is eating a juicy cheeseburger gratefully and joyfully better or worse than eating organic and working out while hating every single bit of it? It’s just a question, so don’t be scared of it; think about it, then feel it. Is losing weight by looking down at and on the naked beauty after a shower actually adding weight to the argument between your heart and mind?
My overall point with all of this is that balance certainly isn’t mutually exclusive in this world of unrelenting duality. Perhaps rather than chasing balance and its unforeseen effects, maybe cultivating a “roll with the punches” attitude and finding joy in even the smallest things in life will give you a more holistic peace. Just a thought; don’t fear it. As far as the Angel of Balance, leave the worry to her. She has the big picture with all of its moving parts.