Author Ursula K. Le Guin said, “The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty; not knowing what comes next.”
Boy, it sure can feel intolerable, uncertainty. If you're anything like me, you'll recognize in yourself a driving compulsion to understand, to figure-out and master and define every darned thing. Like that will somehow make it easier or more manageable or more successful. It’s really tempting, and so we end up pre-packaging our reality into the tidy boxes of what we think we already know, into routines and the way "it's always been." We think we need to prepare for every contingency, leaving nothing to chance. We attempt to think of everything beforehand so nothing can possibly go wrong…
And yeah, good luck with that.
Because the thing is: the very best of our living-breathing reality is, in truth, a lot more about what we don't know, about our uncertainty, about everything chancy and dicey and unprepared-for. I think Ms. Le Guin really nailed it when she said that this is actually what makes life possible. It is our not-knowing that makes possible the exploration of new ways of being, the discovery of new horizons, the creation of new worlds, love.
I love the in-between time — after the Christmas season and before the beginning of the new year — because it feels like a perfect time to practice not-knowing, a time to be with our uncertainty. Everything can be up in the air. Nothing needs to be fixed in place yet. Nothing needs to be pinned down in our firm plans and resolutions for the coming year Right now, in between, in the breath before it all begins again, life is pregnant with possibility.
It's all about possibility. I'm not talking about a shut-down, I don't mean not-knowing as a conclusion or stagnation -- "After careful consideration of all the evidence and options and my lifetime of experience I've decided that I don't know, so there, the end." That's a bullshit way to end the year and start anew. What I'm excited about is embracing not-knowing as a great beginning -- a chance to stumble upon previously hidden vistas, to move and dance unbound by our preconceptions, an opportunity to open our hearts and untether our minds and come alive in an expansive way!
Join me for Boxing Day, December 26, at Albuquerque Center for Spiritual Living, as we celebrate the up-in-the-air of it all, allowing life to be fluid and motile and rich in wonder… Service Saturday at 6:00 pm. Refreshments, community, and cheer at 5:30. XO, Drew