Cactus Person Tuesday

Universal Love, Said the Cactus Person

It’s amazing to occasionally get the chance to take a couple steps out of the car. Here’s some things I’m thinking about it:

You’ve got Heart/Body and you’ve got Ego/Mind. (Not sure if Heart and Body are the same, but they feel like it; same with Ego and Mind.) Usually, at least in my experience, Ego is in charge 100% of the time. It’s almost comically difficult to get ego to stop being in charge. By the time you say “I’m going to do X to get ego to chill out”, you’ve already lost; that’s ego talking.

Ego is probably there to protect you, evolution etc, if we’re watching out for threats constantly then we won’t get eaten by a tiger. But in the modern world, it makes you miserable. It’s like an overzealous teacher who’s been given an order to “control” a classroom of kids; yeah, it can do it, by sheer force if need be, but nobody’s having a good time. (including the teacher!) For this reason, it’s important to be kind to ego. You can’t force it out of the way; it’ll fight back harder, and it’ll probably win.

(why will ego win? notably, it’s got control of attention - which is like controlling all the input/output devices on your computer. imagine trying to make a computer do what you want when a hacker adversary can make the monitor show whatever they want and can make your mouse/keyboard do whatever they want. good luck! better befriend the hacker instead.)

What happens when ego does take a break, though? Then heart gets to lead, and wow, whole different ballgame. Heart lives in a whole different world. Here are some things that are true about heart world:

meme where top guy says “I love you” and bottom guy says “I don’t think about you at all

So, how do you let heart lead? … ok, that’s the hard part. Certain technologies in ceremonial spaces do help, though it’s certainly not guaranteed. Some things that might help in regular life:

I think it’s like growing a garden. You can’t make it happen; you can just create the conditions for it to maybe happen on its own.

But when it does, it’s magic. It can be life changing just to get out of the car for a few hours or even minutes, because then you have a sense of what to aim for in the future. Instead of a list of “not"s (it’s not “looking at the dials in the car”, it’s not “driving the car very fast”, it’s not …) you have something that it is, and that makes the search seem so much easier and more hopeful.

And then maybe you try to go back to work on Tuesday and try to write emails and code reviews without saying “have you considered, universal love? transcendent joy?”


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