Friday, October 18, 2013

Inner Conflict

I’m struggling with several things in my daily life. One is how much information I allow in. I’ve written about this before, several years ago, when I gave up the newspaper and decided I didn’t need to be informed about every little thing going on in the larger world, but there’s been some serious backsliding since then. I go through periods of addiction to information on the internet.The serious research does me no harm, when I’m on the trail of a new idea and I’m trying to pull the pieces together. It’s the time wasted on newsfeeds (of dubious quality) and yahoo groups and even high quality blogs and forums that causes problems for me. When I look critically at the vast amount of information I regularly hoover up, none of it has added anything of value to my life. It hasn’t changed who I am or how I act in the world. Changes for me come from following leads that come to me based on where I’m at in the world at any moment—my own leads, the intuitive ones that come from being present, from being fully here on this spot on this planet. That’s the only thing that gets me anywhere.

I know this, yet I go through these periods of information addiction, one I cure myself of only to slide back into before I know it. Yesterday I got angry enough to delete all of my bookmarks for news sites and all of my subscriptions to yahoo groups. In the past I’ve deleted feeds to my favorite blogs and quit visiting forums. I haven’t participated in social networks for several years. The addiction always seems to return however. I don’t know why that is—why don’t I want to stay fully in the moment? There’s so much to explore by staying open to this moment and it’s the only way I know of to get to novel insights and solutions. Is it just laziness?

Somewhat related is my need to be a hermit. Perhaps it’s an over-reaction to the superficial connections the internet encourages, but for the past few years I’ve had an intense need to limit my contact with other people. I do fine with real live people in my real live world, but unless someone is right here face-to-face with me they fall off my radar. Much as I care about and love a lot of people who live at a distance to me and much as I’m stimulated by emails with folks I don’t personally know but who share similar ideas and ideals with me, I just can’t carry on conversations at a distance anymore. It seems like I’m way overcompensating for living in a much too connected world. Yet I do believe I should limit how many relationships I have so I can deepen the ones I do have, just like I should limit the information I allow in so I can focus on what’s truly relevant.

I think the reason this causes me conflict is because at heart what I’ve really been drawn to do for the past several years is an experiment with being a total hermit. I mean going off somewhere and having absolutely no contact with the human race for several years, apprenticing with the land. Intuitively I feel there are powerful things for me to learn by doing so. Yet it’s something realistically I’m never going to do. Instead I’ve pulled back as much as possible from human interactions so I can at least get a small taste of what my soul is craving. This has to be the solution for me anyway—living on the fringes of human society, so I’m able to dip into the world of human interaction and relationship while mostly immersing myself in those other powers and relationships residing in the more-than-human world.

My writer’s block fits in somewhere here too, I think. I want to communicate, but taking the time to put my thoughts on paper (or online) takes me out of being right here, which is where I really need to be. When I tried to tell the story of my time in PA on this blog I failed because to me that story was already old news. It was stale. I had already incorporated the lessons learned through that experience and had built on it and was on to a new level of understanding. I bog down trying to tell an old story. I have to speak from my present where the story is still vibrating with energy. I think I still may be able to get the tale of my time in PA told, (and it’s important to me to do so because I learned some really valuable things) but the tale may be told in bits and pieces over many new posts, as each tidbit becomes relevant to a current discussion.

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