i am bewildered, and I am mad

A reader (and I’m sorry, I can’t recall exactly who) pointed me to this Rumi quote on bewilderment….


There are many guises for intelligence.
One part of you is gliding in a high windstream,
while your more ordinary notions
take little steps and peck at the ground….

…We must become ignorant of what we have been taught
and be instead bewildered.

Run from what is profitable and comfortable.
Distrust anyone who praises you.
give your investment money, and the interest
on the capital, to those who are actually destitute.

Forget safety. Live where you fear to live.
Destroy your reputation. Be notorious.
I have tried prudent planning long enough.
From now on, I’ll be mad.

Oh, gosh, this speaks to me. “I have tried prudent planning long enough”…. Ain’t that the truth. I am often so rigid with how I live my life. I wake up on my days off with a plan. I venture into relationships with a set idea of who I think I am. I think I know how this life is meant to unfold.

But of course the best things happen when things don’t go to plan.

I want to access the part of me that glides in a windstream, with open lungs.

The other day, the day after the Julia Gillard leadership spill, I think we were all bewildered. Everyone I spoke to felt this sense that all the rules no longer applied. Everything had shifted.

I described it as “that space between breaths”.

I felt ill-at-ease for a while, but then felt expansive and fresh once things settled. Bewilderment does this, when we acknowledge that the dis-ease is just awe.

I’m also liking the idea of destroying my reputation. I do this every now and then. I periodically venture into territory marked, “but what will others think of you”. I like doing it. I like proving to myself that if I maintain solid conviction and moral certitude, things will flow just right.

What are you doing to get bewildered right now?

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