Brownie points if you can name where that quote is from.
Americans, as a general statement, are obsessed with the concept of balance. Just look at our commercials, it is the single most used “tool” to sell a product from yogurt that promises to balance bodily functions, to candy bars that promise to return the balance of your spirit and body. Balance sells, or rather, the promise of it does.
More so, I think, then youth or everlasting love.
I am not as intimate with other cultures to make such a broad generalization about them, but feel free to make your own.
Youth and everlasting love, as commercial tools, are secondary to the promise that having them will provide eternal calm waters in life. It is the…what is the word? The subliminal message in all of our advertising, entertainment and often, our art.
We have even managed to take religions and subsume them to our desire for eternal sameness. The Americanized forms of Hinduism, Buddhism, Catholicism, Paganism and so on and so forth are rooted in the belief that there is a point at which everything is even and nothing is disruptive.
Yet, balance is disruptive.
It is messy, uncomfortable, life changing — and also — slightly thrilling, because the core of balance lies in change.
Sun goes up, sun comes down.
Within that simple statement, about a repeating cycle that appears to be perfectly in order, lies the nature of life and balance. Each time the sun moves, life changes. Some things grow, some things die. Some things must stop at night, some things start during the day. Some things whither in the sun and some things thrive.
The cycle is the balance, the balance lies in what is allowed to change and move through a process of growth. The cycle lies, not in the repetition of the exact same thing (after all, the sun itself is in constant turmoil) but in the consistency of the process of passing through stages of growth.
We do ourselves a disservice when we seek the kind of balance that lies on a horizontal line, where everything stays the same. In life, as we grow and change, our attention is diverted, distracted, redirected towards one thing and away from another and then back again.
Balance lies in the willingness to be uncomfortable, to let life be a little messy, to experience some highs and lows and above all else –
to be willing to grow.
c.2011 Cassandra Tribe. All Rights Reserved.