What keeps us going? The next thing! We have no idea what it will be, or how we will respond to it. The possibility of new and innovative is never farther than the next thing away. The next thing stands before us as the Cyclops stood before Ulysses. Joseph Campbell said, "It took the Cyclops to bring out the hero in Ulysses." The next thing does that for us. We have to call upon the Hero within to stand up and meet the next thing, and do with it what needs to be done, when it needs to be done, how it needs to be done, because it needs to be done, anyway, nevertheless, even so, for the joy of doing it and the satisfaction of having done it, no matter how often we may have done it before. The Next Thing is the Sisyphean task awaiting us all-- calling out the hero in us all-- waiting for us to gather ourselves and do it again, for no other reason than because it needs to be done. As with everything, the right attitude is everything. By standing up and doing the next thing that needs to be done (again), we are molding the right attitude and shaping the right way of living by bringing our original nature to bear upon the time and place of our living, time after time, and that alone is bringing something new to life moment-to-moment, after all, where is that being done anywhere? Who do we know who is doing the next thing in the right way? In doing it ourselves, we bring novelty to bear upon the same old same old in the way we greet the day, and that creates the possibility of seeing something new, of doing something different, of bringing to life something that would not be there without us, of changing the world--our world, at least-- of changing ourselves, a little at a time. Improving our attitude is the surest way I know of improving the world. And the next thing is always there to assist us in doing that. The Hero's Task is how we meet the day, everyday.
Jesus was an original human being. The list is long. But not long enough. The other list is longer to the power of infinity. Cows following cows from the barn to the pasture and back to the barn. The reason unvaccinated people are unvaccinated is their social circle. The people they hang out with. That is the reason things are as they are worldwide. If you want your life to be different than it is, hang out with different people. If you want your life to be what it is capable of being, hang out with fewer people. Stop watching TV. Get off of social media. Spend time in the natural world. Visit art museums. Listen to a wide variety of music. Expand your interests. Empty yourself of judgment, agendas, opinions, desires, fear, duty, anger, and everything that prevents you from experiencing the moment of your living. Sit in the stillness and the silence. Watching the mud settle, watching the water clear. Seeing what you look at. Knowing what's what and what is called for in response to it. Do what needs to be done, when it needs to be done, the way it needs to be done, because it needs to be done, on your own authority, with the gifts/genius/daemon/shtick/interests/etc. that come with you from the womb, for the joy of doing it, and the satisfaction of having done it, in each situation as it arises, all your life long. Be the original person you are created to be. Day in and day out for the rest of your life. Switch lists. That is your mission if you choose to accept it. Beginning here. Now.
Jesus came tossing out theology and tradition. His, "You have heard it said, but I say unto you..." turned the Judaism of his day into an enemy determined to see him dead, declaring, "It is better that one man die, than that the entire nation be destroyed!" The entrenched way of seeing and doing things never goes quietly into the night, and Jesus was a threat to all that was seen and done. From turning over the tables of money-changers at the Temple, to harvesting wheat and eating it, and healing on the sabbath, Jesus was against the way religion was done in his day. And he paid for his defiance with his life. And within about 300 years of his death, the Christian Church was burning heretics at the stake for doing the same thing Jesus did to stir the wrath of the Pharisees and Sadducees of his day. Religion does not lend itself to reformation, and has a hard time changing its mind about anything. Changing our mind is the key to success on all levels, and the essential characteristic in finding our way to The Way. We get there one mistake at a time, one wrong turn at a time, one dead end at a time. The right kind of attitude about all of our failures is the path to The Path. The trick to arrival is to keep on walking. Our investment has to be in the search, and not in making The Find. Thinking we have found the answer for everyone is a clear indication that we don't know what we are doing. The right kind of emptiness, the right kind of stillness, the right kind of silence will lead to the right kind of clarity more surely than anybody's Book of Doctrine. When in doubt, be quiet, and see what stirs to life in the gap between thoughts.