Thursday, August 2, 2007

not again

I've been riding my bike on a regular Thursday morning ride with a group of folks in my neighborhood. We meet up at a coffee house and then ride through Griffith Park, up to the ridge. Unfortunately, since the fire a few months ago, the route down the other side of the hill is closed, so we usually end up turning around and coming back down the same way we came up (there is another way down but it's an extremely rough road it's no fun to ride). It's a little unsatisfying to retrace the route, although going down is different from going up, and the purpose of the ride is training our bodies, not to get somewhere or complete a specific route.

Once we've accomplished something in life there is no spiritual need to do it again. Repeating accomplishments unhealthfully snares us into the past, instead of allowing us that time for new experiences. instead of re-recreating past experiences, which are never as fulfilling the second time around, it's better to see what new experience we can undertake. Once we've already made some potential in us manifest in the world, the experience is forever preserved in God through God's role as the eternal rememberer. Doing it again adds nothing to the divine experience.

Of course, like my weekly bike ride on the same route, a lot of what we choose to do a second time or again and again, is not an atempt to re-create the past, but is in the service of something new. The weekly bike ride is in the service of growth in experience and strengthing muscles. And some experiences are so rich that it make take several repeitions before everything potential in it is actually realized. So the useful question to ask when faced with the possibility of doing again something we've done before is, "Is this an attempt to re-create an experience I've already fully realized, or, is this an opportunity to add to my experience of life by finding something new in the already familiar?"

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