The Pathless Path

Wayne C. Allen – a simple Zen guy – writes about living and relating elegantly

2012.10.22

You Are Only as You Do

Share

You Are Only as You Do – Wishing and hoping get you nowhere. Imagining get you nowhere. Just do, and then do again!


In This Moment

I’m writing this on the Canadian Thanksgiving Weekend, and realize how much I have to be thankful for. I’m enjoying the ride, and looking forward to whatever comes next!



only do

The amaz­ing Amanda Palmer has this song out — "In My Mind" — and it’s both great and inter­est­ing. Her writ­ing and videos push the edge, and I love her.

Here are some of the lines from the song:

… I’m not exactly the person that I thought I’d be.

… I’ll never be the person that I thought I’d be.

I’m so busy with every­thing

That I don’t look at anything

But I’m sure I’ll look when I am older

… I don’t want to be the person that I want to be.

And in my mind

I imag­ine so many things

Things that aren’t really happen­ing

And when they put me in the ground

I’ll start pound­ing the lid,

Saying, "I haven’t finished yet,

I still have a tattoo to get,

It says, ‘I’m living in the moment’".

And maybe it’s funni­est of all

To think I’ll die before I actu­ally

See

That I am exactly the person that I want to be.

I’d say, "I am exactly the person that I enact," because you are as you do.

The easiest way to get what’s going on here is to substitute "imagined" for "thought."

… I’m not exactly the person that I imag­ined I’d be.

… I’ll never be the person that I imag­ined I’d be.

We have in our heads remarkable stories… who we were, how we grew up, and what we imagine we shall be, some day, if all goes well, and the creek don’t rise.

And all of it is imag­i­nary. It’s all a pastiche (always wanted to use that word!) made up of the raw mate­r­ial stored between our ears.

It’s concocted out of raw, mean­ing­less data, to support what­ever "plot line" we’ve decided upon for our "story." As Amanda sings,

"And in my mind

I imag­ine so many things

Things that aren’t really happen­ing"

In my soon to be released (early 2013???) new book, The. Best. Relationship. Ever., I write:

The TV show “24” shot 26 hours of film for every one hour segment. The direc­tor and the editors took 26 hours of film and boiled it down to a one hour, real-time segment.

Now, think. How many possi­ble plot points, perspec­tives, and direc­tions are contained in that 26 hours of film? It’s infi­nite. Yet, once it’s edited and “in the can,” it’s condensed down to only one version. And, get this. The scenes chosen, out of endless possi­bil­i­ties, matches the prede­ter­mined script!

This is what we do, all the time, as we review every instance (plot-point) in our long lives. We edit, we ignore stuff, we stitch together unre­lated events, and we tell ourselves that the concoc­tion is “my life.”

However, it’s a story.

So, recog­nize this, and let go.

…Being present is having a love affair with Now. The “24″ illus­tra­tion is impor­tant. It explains why you can go through a situ­a­tion with some­one, and when discussing it, hear two differ­ent stories.

It’s not that one story is “true,” and the other “false.” It’s that each person filters (chooses the scenes out of all the scenes filmed) the data through their expec­ta­tions (their script.)

The past is a story, and "who I want to be" is a fantasy.

Amanda concludes,

And maybe it’s funni­est of all

To think I’ll die before I actu­ally

See

That I am exactly the person that I want to be.

Many do die before they see that wishing and hoping and dreaming and game-playing is not the same as living.

this is meThis is me, right now… living

It’s not about living in your head — it’s about living in the real world. In the here and now, there is this moment and a choice — how will I "be" with this, dance with this, engage 100% — with this.

No plans, no stories, no wish­ing, no imag­in­ing.

I am exactly and precisely who I am, right now.

Having a tattoo, loudly declaring that "I get it," coming up with excuses about why later is better than now, all diversions, and unreal.


Amanda, in the video, was (during film­ing) exactly and precisely the woman in the video, and noth­ing and no-one else. Her artis­tic expres­sion of herself is her, self­ing.

It doesn’t matter how she conceived of the video. It is exactly as she enacted it.

Your mind is a fun toy, but much like an X-box. No matter how real the graph­ics, it’s a game, and when you inter­act with it, you are game-playing. If that is your choice, great!

    • If you desire to get a degree, paint a paint­ing, create a busi­ness, write a novel, then stop imag­in­ing how great it will be to finish, and start the damn thing! Do it.
    • If you dream of an elegant rela­tion­ship, engage, right now, elegantly. Buy my new book, when it’s done, and learn how. But don’t whine, do it.
    • If you imag­ine your­self living fully some day, have a breath, and embrace right now. Live fully here, with no refer­ence to "then."
    • If you believe you’re here for a reason, live it now, no excuses.

    Dance the moment, see your face, and be you.

    You are exactly the person you enact. All the time. How could it be other­wise?


    Make Contact!

    So, how does this week’s arti­cle sit with you? What ques­tions do you have? Leave a comment or ques­tion!

    Subscribe to The Pathless Path

    Sign up and receive a free digi­tal e-booklet - my guide to Zen living - Exercises in Consciousness. (You'll receive a link once you've confirmed your subscrip­tion.)

    Powered by Subscribers Magnet

    A Shameless Bribe!!
    Receive The Pathless Path by e-mail!
    As a thank-you, we'll send you a link to our pdf book­let, Exercises in Consciousness.
    What could be better than that??

    Share

    Previous

    Miniskirts, Truth, and The Right Way

    Next

    Changing Channels on our Thinking

    4 Comments

    1. Jane

      Aha Wayne, wise words – we are exactly as we enact. Anything we don’t enact hasn’t come to fruition whether we want it, think about it or hope for it, despite the story I some­times tell myself.

    2. Because I can so elegantly get what I don’t want, this ‘stop whin­ing and get on with it’ message is exactly what I needed to hear today, Wayne. Thanks!

      I also recently heard a song by the Avett Brothers called “Road Full of Promise, Head Full of Doubt” with a line that says, ‘Decide what to be and go be it’. Yup.

      And hey, I’ll be first in line to buy your book so keep me in the publish­ing date loop :)

      • Hi Danette!
        Yeah, it’s “just” the simple reminder to do what you choose, as opposed to getting bogged down in what we don’t want, or inac­tion. Jet aircraft are appar­ently off course 95% of the flight, and get precisely where they are going by contin­ual course correc­tion.
        Keep in touch!

      • Hi Danette!
        Yeah, it’s “just” the simple reminder to do what you choose, as opposed to getting bogged down in what we don’t want, or inac­tion. Jet aircraft are appar­ently off course 95% of the flight, and get precisely where they are going by contin­ual course correc­tion.
        Keep in touch!

    Leave a Reply

    Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén