Thursday, December 6, 2012


FINDING BALANCE IN A WORLD WITH FIXED SCALES

I love this graphic because it shows balance does not require symmetry.  For me the key to balance is recognizing inherent in true balance is diversity, and uniqueness.

Before I get into the rest of the post, yesterday while out and about several people I do not know approached me.  I do not like this.  I am very guarded about my private time.  But each of these people brought me positive energy so I felt very comfortable speaking with them.

For me, the BV is mostly about gaining the confidence of the business community.  The sad truth is, they are the ones with the power to move things forward.  The people can also move things forward if they would just organize - but with a shortage of people power, the business community is the next best option.

Both businessmen asked me if I was the blogger - I hate the question - they then immediately went into my post about the airport.  One noted that he was amazed how persistent I have been over the years.  I responded I understand education.  You have to keep the issue alive for years before you can build a consensus.

Both men are in 100%  agreement with me, but raised the question of how.  My response was simple - one step at a time.  Money is cheap right now.  Brownsville needs to buy the land now and worry about the airport later.

Governor Perry wants the LRGV vote in 2 years.  Governor Perry believes in Brownsville as the Gateway to Latin America.  I am convinced that if Brownsville would simply buy the land now on 511, Governor Perry will get behind state money to build the airport.  I am certain with the state behind the project, Congressman Vela will also seek  federal funding.  It is really just believing in the possible.

The businessmen then asked how do  we as a community convince the city commission to get behind the project.  I said - forget the city commission.  I am willing to offer any group of businessmen or women to put together a ticket of three candidates who will run on the Airport Development Ticket.  I told them they need to  find three Latinas, maybe one Latino, who are well educated and can articulate the issue to the people.  We need an at large candidate who will be so large, that once sworn in, Tony Martinez becomes an afterthought.

So I told them it is doable - they just have to organize.  My impression was - as business people they fear being on the losing side.  I told them to think of it this way - if they had not been willing to fail would they have even started their businesses.

Sorry for the side note - but the encounter gave me a lot of positive energy and I felt a need to share, especially since the encounter sparked my interest in this post on balance.

BACK TO BALANCE

Nothing wears down at exactly the same rate as anything thing else.  Consider the stones, if one wears down just slightly more in proportion to the others, everything will come tumbling  down.  To maintain balance there must be constant renewal.

Mary Baker Eddy was conflicted over the founding of the Christian Science Church - originally she opposed it.  If you know her writings you know they were constantly evolving with newer insights in to faith.  The Church is basically dying because those who truly study her words know they were not to remain stagnant in time.  The more you study the basic concepts she discovered, the more you realize there is more.  In time many people like myself left the church because we outgrew the old stagnant ideas locked in time.  Ms. Eddy knew her ideas were expanding on a regular basis.  The Church has lost its balance and is dying.  It is stuck in time with no option for accepting new insights into faith.  I am certain had Mary Baker Eddy lived another 50 years the Church today would be nothing like the Church has become.  I am also certain she would have taught the Church must evolve with the recognition of new insights into faith.

Now you know my background.  I have two sides to how I think and they are in constant conflict with one another.  I have a strong moral compass with little room for excuses, but I am also the consummate pragmatist.  You have to look for solutions which fit the time and not some predefined dogma.  A moral  compass is not absolute.  The  compass can move along the same continuum of a pragmatic policy wonk.  It is just a matter of learning where the two align.  It is no easy challenge.

The US and Brownsville are so filled with negative energy it is nearly impossible to find balance.  The community finds itself always at odds with its best interests as a necessary evil to survival.  There is no balance.  In many ways it is pure chaos.

I am very in tune with my core self.  Mountains, thunderstorms, and heavy rains flood my body with intense energy.  In your case it may be birds, the ocean.  I love the ocean, but prefer the colder ocean.  In two weeks I will be in NY for 5 days - not staying for Christmas - I will go out to the north Atlantic and feed the seagulls.  It can be snowing, icing, I will not care.  The renewal I will get from sitting in the sand along the cold north Atlantic is so intense. I cannot imagine anything being more powerful to aid my renewal.  I am fortunate in that I know these  things about myself.  They bring balance.

People who need to fix the world rarely fix anything.  I am happy doing little things for a few people here and there.  I am happy with my annual donations to Altgifts.org to help with development or sustainability projects in Nicaragua.  I never seek to do great things in a big way - I see great things in helping a handful of people at a time - no fanfare - no self promotion.  The good news is, all over the US people like me are a dime a dozen. 

But living in this world today makes staying balanced nearly impossible.  My time in Peru was amazing.  I loved being in the Andes more than anything else.  The Andres make Machu Picchu almost insignificant.  For me they are so much more powerful.  But that is me - I know people who go out to the desert in El Paso and sit for days on end renewing themselves.  They are not renewed by rain the way I am.

For me the practice of law was the ultimate act of self betrayal.  There is no balance.  It is self destructive.  To enjoy the practice of law you have to receive joy from money and power.  Inasmuch as I reject money and power as inimical to the natural human state, I was a fish out of water.  I simply do not understand the need to steal, destroy, and deceive for money and power.  Every lawyer I know in Dallas would leave the practice of law tomorrow if they were not prisoners to it. 

Those of us who have found the art of balance are growing in numbers.  But most are like me - too weak to let go and move forward.  In a perfect world I would probably live in a small mountain community on the eastern side of the Andes in Ecuador or Peru running a small public high school. That is what I would do with my lottery winnings.  I love the Rockies and they give me immense energy, but they do not have the balance in weather I loved in the Andes.  But you may be the type who thrives on the cold in the Rockies.

When I travel internationally, especially to second and third world  countries, I encounter people who are still thriving for something and who are willing to work together as a community to make for a better tomorrow.  In Nicaragua, more and more expats from all over the world are using their skills to donate teaching services to local communities.  I would love to do the same thing in Nicaragua, but the weather in Nicaragua does not feed me energy.

When I was in El Paso (76-80) at times with friends or sometimes on my own, we would climb the mountain in the middle of town and spend the day studying.  I always got great grades after studying on the mountain.  What makes the Andes in northern Peru or Ecuador so great is, at 12,000 feet you are so  close to the equator the weather is perfect.  You also get magnificent storms coming out of the amazon into the Andes.

I remember when I returned to Lima at sea level after a week in the Andes how I felt totally spent.  I was so full of energy that morning and seemed to lose all of it upon arrival in Lima. 

So today's lesson is take time to identify when you feel energized.  Stop what you are doing to find out what made you  feel energized.  Build on that and you will begin to find balance.

 It is not easy to remain balanced when life seems to always drag you back into the chaos.  This is the riddle I have yet to solve - how to not get drawn back into the chaos.

Most people who know me know I live by the concept of Chinses handcuffs.  The more each side tries to pull out the more both sides are locked in chaos.  If both sides will just push in a little in time they will both be released from the chaos.  Unfortunatelly some people are too stubbord to release even a little.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Very good lesson. Thank you.