August 23, 2012

Thoughts on Contentment

Let's face it, we are imperfect beings endlessly searching, in vain, for our elixir, our cure-all.  A take one pill a day to do the happy dance, a carefree twirl around the room, as a way to achieve instant happiness as an emotion and contentment as a state of mind.  A way to get out of bed in the morning in order to face the tumultuous day.  War paint.  Maybe you're not the pill popping type, so you instead seek happiness in buying things to fill the emptiness inside you: that deep, dark, arcane thing that surfaces (and colors your interactions with others) whenever you perceive times to get unbearably tough.  Or perhaps you thrill seek in order to feel fully alive, to take the numbness away and replace it with a temporary adrenaline rush.  Now, I can feel.  Others keep everything--the plane ticket stubs, musty old newspapers, tattered magazines--deriving a sense of stability and order in their mere presence.  Just in case.

(I am just as imperfect as you, as imperfect as the person in the next room.  A stranger in the midst, from this perspective, is nary a stranger at all--you see?)

Our daily routines become so emotionally ingrained in us that we lose sight of their actual meanings, including the implied.  Our minds become impermeable to change, to growth, unable to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Timid, we are afraid to reach out into the dark and take that leap into the unknown.

But sometimes, hope flickers where darkness permeates.  In this hope is the seed of contentment reaching out, first cautiously--with tentative steps--and then bravely, with a determined stride.  It grows, shapes itself; conceives.  Reveals to us mere mortals that contentment must be found within before it can be found without.

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