Various Thoughts

by Elizabeth

Avoidance of things which are good.

Why do the things that need doing get perpetually moved into an unknown future? The constant postponement of things that will be salutary, enjoyable. Instead choosing non-doing and frittering away over nothings. Not writing? Because I don’t have the right kind of pen, I don’t know whether to write by hand or type. Not moving and getting exercise? Because I don’t want to overstimulate the nervous system, because the weather’s not good. Not applying to graduate school? Because I don’t know what I want, it might be the wrong course. Not going to bed on time? Let me watch one more video clip…. Not making time to pray? I’m tired now; I can begin again tomorrow. True enough, but reinforcing a habit of dissatisfaction and restless idleness. Feed yourself on healthy doings; do not oversaturate with easy but empty calories—activities which leave you floating here and there, but never produce much of solid weight, of substance, of happy pride. Do the things that occur to you as healthy challenges: making your heart sing a little louder, freer, and lighter. Maybe the things that you present as excuses will clear up of themselves, when you immerse yourself in the doing.

It’s not easy to let go of someone you care for. It’s not easy at all. But sometimes there’s a reason for being uncertain. There’s a reason for hearing the bell of courage and saying: well, now, it’s time for a change. You don’t need to know how things are going to work out. You won’t know. It’s better—more exciting—if you let it be a surprise. A pleasant surprise it will be. You just keep your head high and work hard every day to do what needs done. The confidence of a radiant love will build up in time. You’ll see. The path is not lit until you start walking.

… You needn’t worry about the resources. They are there. What you should concern yourself with is the habit. The sitting-down-to-write every day. There will be inspiration and opportunity enough, but it depends on you whether the writing will get done. There is the old-fashioned principle of hard work. It hasn’t outlived its use. Not very attractive perhaps, and simple in its ways, but eminently wise and, if I may say it, irreplaceable.

There is no reason at all, no matter the physical limitations or geo-psycho-biological circumstances, to keep from loving someone you have already loved. Love is by nature a permanent fixture. It must be kept alive in various ways—sparked into renascence by attention or kind intention—but it is really not meant to die. For love to die is slander to its eternal character. Yes, you must love.

I have no easy answers for you. You wish for reassurance, and for certainty, but life is an unpredictable thing. There’s too much mystery for answers to come hard and fast and easy. What I can tell you is just this: Look to your heart—to the deepest place of your soul—you will not miss it, it is unmistakable, and you feel at home there. Look to this place, which is true, and ask: What can I be in this world? What love can I bring? What choices will lead me to the highest place of love, where the joy of surrender is a daily gift? The truth of your answer will bring you the peace you seek.

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