Life is Mysterious…

A wise person once told me that “Life is mysterious, don’t take it too serious.”  I haven’t always taken that advice and maybe it doesn’t fit all situations. Still, we have so many questions, so much is left to the deal. Life is not hard wired to guide us along a path of predetermined automagination or deliver to us a clear eyed existence. Life is a blend of events, personality and actions. It’s a ride on a horse we call time that takes it’s own shape over an ever changing landscape. In a way, it’s like a dream. Where did the horse come from? How did I get here? How, in this world, do I get where I want to go? Where, exactly, do I want to go?

Reality is, truly, a creation of our perception; it is history and hormones. We use these – and often are used by these – to make sense of our world. But, what is this world, really? Underneath the hood it’s atoms, chemicals, electrical impulses and so forth. There are more cells living on us and in us than belong to our own body. We create a reality in our head but, it is in concert with our physical and social ecosystem. Let that sink in!

Reality is not as obvious as we usually think. We gather our knowledge and habits along the way from our ride. Our grip on the stirrups of tradition, the confidence in our seat, the balance we engage and the geography through which we maneuver dominate the navigation our future. Those shades of gray in the background and multicolor flashes of light in the distance combine to propel us forward and into that daily challenge.

Answers are not permanent answers. Solutions depend on the context we encounter, much like the space-time continuum with velocity and gravity working to constantly change the ride. The speed and weight of things present a constant challenge. Our position and response must be fluid whether we like it or not. Only those continual adjustments will maintain equilibrium.

As humans of limited capacity we crave simplification. We find it in the stories and characters we construct. Most things are just too complicated to continually trace how we came to understand that original thought. We only manage with the shortcuts we build in our brains. We have this consciousness thing going on and it doesn’t function smoothly on the level of details. consciousness ticks along the stream, not unlike that old Timex watch in the commercials until something stops it and the light goes out. Mostly, we don’t think about that. The body is as much a process as a being. Control is something we share with nature. We ride that mysterious wave rather than tame the sea.

Understanding, in a real sense, is an illusion mostly created by our brains. Color has no meaning until light is processed by our eyes and is sent on as signals to our brain. Smell, taste, touch, hearing, all our senses are chemical electric impulses sent through our nervous system to the brain and other organs that then interpret the blast of stimulus. Add to that a mix of hormones, particular genetics, and other vague sensations the brain and nerves use to make sense of all those signals then turning them into story form shortcuts you have habituated into experiences – basically habit – creating your own reality. Of course, none of that would make any sense without the great store of unwritten, pre-written and digested tradition standing long before that instant of awareness we call the present.

So, where is the mystery? That is the mystery! And, what good does it do to understand how we “understand?” Will it bring me the big bucks or get the boss off my back? Well, maybe. Or, maybe it will just put me in a different place. If you have a different perspective, does it change your situation? It does! As you see yourself differently you feel – and feeling is an important part – different priorities. It is in the giving up of some of that “control” we think we have that gives us our own mystery.

There are things that we can “control.” But, it’s only relative to your personal wave. You make decisions relative to your understanding. You interpret life. You change a habit.  You ride the wave. You become more. You feel more authentic, more honest and real. It is that interpretation that we can control.

Let go of some of that control you thought you had. Spend some time learning to tell the difference between your ability to “control” and riding the eternal mystery. Ride that wave between understanding and enigma. Enjoy the mystery and feel more at peace with yourself and the systems we all inhabit.