Faltering

Faltering

On the topic of faltering, say when you stub your toe or bang your head, or almost lose your balance on say standing up at a restaurant and nearly crash into the table next to you, catching the concerned eye of fellow diners, or when your vision of the future falters, and you find your evaluation of your current status in the game of everyday life completely off-kilter, or you're giving a best-man's speech and for a moment forget your best friend's name (all these are examples taken from different snippets of emails I've received from various people seeking advice incidentally – though myself I just typed indicentally before I corrected it, so am no stranger to the falter) – in that moment just before righting yourself a gap opens up between the visible, on-show and the invisible, all-is-hidden worlds.

A gap opens between the realm of the holding-it-all-together self and the random on/off self – and behind both is the one presence, the Tao in you.

Now our main function is to serve as conduits for the Tao, channels whereby it's able to express and experience itself in human form, so it's our duty to hold the shape together enough that it doesn't split asunder as the Tao pours through it.

Yet in my experience, paradoxically, the Tao seems to enjoy these moments of falter immensely – it seems to throb more strongly while they're happening.

It's as if the warp and weft of the fabric of the story of reality needs tilting out of shape for an instant so it can subsequently swing more back into shape than it had been before.

Subtext being that rather than fight the falter, gird those loins and actually ride it. And if the falter comes with embarrassment for being seen by those around, to be imperfect (as if anyone isn't), ride the embarrassment too.

The Taoist way is to love the Tao in everything – and in everyone – even and especially when it's occluded by static and interference.

But while loving the falter it's imperative or at least useful to be ever-mindful of your intention to thrive and arrive at the utmost expression of yourself, and reach your potential in all respects this lifetime, always with the underlying message-to-self, 'everything turns to my advantage'.

That way every falter, every tumble, along the way merely shunts you closer to realizing the desired state.

And the key, bear with me being repetitive but it's important, it’s important, is to situate yourself in your back whence you're able to bear witness and maintain equilibrium and perspective – something impossible to do when stuffed into the front with all the noise of the human drama going on.

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