For the past several years, I've been thinking about my life as a journey. Focusing on the moving forward part, not expecting to arrive a destination. All the while thinking that I needed to be growing, learning, gaining insight and wisdom. Somehow it all seemed uphill. And yet, there were niggling inconsistencies with that model of my purpose in life. For one, why would I seem to need to learn the same lessons over and over, if I was indeed on a path toward something? Even switchbacks constantly gain elevation.
Happily, that pathway/journey/hike-up-the-spiritual-mountain metaphor was blown up recently by a mind-altering video my friend Jeri Saper shared on facebook. What if life is not about the journey? What if it's not about taking a trip to somewhere more enlightened? What if it's more about the experience of this moment, more along the lines of flowing with the music. A dance floor instead of a mountain path?
It works. It works for me. It explains why I would experience lessons again and again in a slightly different way. Maybe a different spiritual language. And this idea makes it okay for me to learn it again. I get another go at it, not because I'm not smart enough or good enough, but because I will benefit from experiencing it again. Because it's a gift. Sure, Judy, you can do that in your street shoes. But can you do it in tap shoes? Pointe shoes? Cowboy boots?
I love the dance floor idea for other reasons. It's a level place where others are laughing, dancing, singing, enjoying the music. Sometimes we dance together, sparking energy in each other. Sometimes we stand on the edge and watch, not because we can't do it, but because we need a rest. Because we need to watch. Because watching is therapeutic.
Back on the trail, I was only aware of those who were further along than me. And I could never catch up. On the dance floor, we are all in this together. And if the DJ plays one we don't like, well, we just sit it out. Or we dance anyway, to heck with the expectations of the song. I can do a mean Charleston to a hip hop song.
Perception is everything. I like this dance floor thing. Music, please.