Hmm. (Hexagram 10, CONDUCT)

I recently found a quotation that's stuck like Krazy-Glue (or would that be Sane-Glue?) to the front of my mind. Here it is ...

This act of choosing is the ultimate human act.
(George Grant)

To begin to realize our capacity for choice -- our ability to make choices -- is so refreshing ... and sometimes terrifying! There's no turning back -- except at great cost -- once we fathom how responsible we really are for what we do ... and for who we choose to be. (Gulp.)

... and then I sense another presence -- it's mercy. Now that's a surprise!

What a (seeming) paradox. Responsibility and mercy sharing a space in my head. Then I clue in to what responsibility really means: the ability to respond.

No praise; no blame. No lording-over. Oh phew.

Simply the ability to respond.

And then ... the choice. (Gulp.) The choice to respond. The choice to ... choose.

That's where this licence-plate thingee comes in. I searched Google Images for "choose, choice"; this was the first image that emerged:

Choose Choice. (Huh...?)

Choose ... choice. OK! There's a potentially maddening roundabout in that pairing of words ... so I'm just going to notice my response to it (the "Huh" ... perplexity ... curiosity ... ), and let it sit awhile.

Choose choice. How does that strike you?

Comments

Jan said…
I came from an alcoholic military family, and so didn't know about choices. I didn't understand that choices were available (and not just SHOULDS) until about 13 years ago. Shocking, huh?
Jaliya said…
Dear xo Jan ... Not shocking at all ... Both parental alcoholism and a strong military influence on a family aren't exactly empowering of children, are they ...

I've just been starting to realize the power inside me -- that capacity to choose that I wrote about in the post -- I'd been so thoroughly passive for so long that I didn't think (or sense inside) that I had *any* volition or capacity for assertion ...

You write that you first became aware of choices about 13 years ago ... what / who was the catalyst for this awareness?

Funny ... I'm aware too that it was about that long ago that I first put my foot down with someone -- my ex, with whom I'd been married for nine years. One night I simply opened my mouth and said ENOUGH. WE ARE FINISHED. OVER. I simply could not imagine living one more day in the straightjacket of a "shut-up-and-put-up" relationship. We were both choking, and one of us had to bail in order to keep both of us sane ... Now we are both with people we are much better suited with ...

I shocked the daylights out of myself (! --> or *into* myself) with that declaration ... shocked the poop out of my ex, too. That night marked the true beginning of the end for us ... and a startling new direction for me. By the time my beloved Sweet Man and I came together about 4.5 years later, I was so much more a solid self ... very clear on what I wanted and what I would not tolerate.

Whew. Long journey, often hardscrabble ... and worth every bump in the road.

Bless you xo
ROBERTA said…
my first response to this is a pro-life vs. choice scenario :)

but once i let that image go....it does settle in to the reality that i often ignore that i do have the choice to choose - in all areas of life!
Jan said…
Finally got back here--depression, therapy, and Al-Anon brought choices into my awareness. I still forget now, but am trying to be more awake to my life.

You're so right--worth every bump on the road!
Jaliya said…
It's amazing how simple choice is ... it's just the struggle to get to the place where I *know* I can choose -- that I'm not helpless. Sometimes it feels like running a marathon just to make a decision!! Anyone relate with this?
Jaliya said…
Roberta ... Yes, that makes so much sense -- your first thought. Isn't 'CHOOSE CHOICE' used as a slogan?

I get to thinking that our good use of the capacity to choose means we've finally grown up ...

I love the I Ching as an ethical guide ... Hexagram 10 whacks me upside the head on occasion, when I need to be reminded that I may be making a currently *stupid* choice ... ;-D

... and the hexagram seems to point us toward the question, "How will I live?", in the ethical sense ... "How will I conduct myself?"
Karin said…
My first response was to laugh at Choose Choice - I love the obviousness of it, yet know well the difficulty in recognizing that I always have choices in my life even when it feels like I don't. I also thought it was literally about choosing the choice to have free choice on the abortion issue. whew - that's a lot of choosing!
Anyway, as always I love reading your thought process and insights Jaliya, and enjoy the accompanying images!
The Crow said…
"Choose choice. How does that strike you?"

Just about right...as it should be...

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