A voicehearer’s path ~

Posts tagged ‘humor’

Humor ~

oldchurchI spent most of my high school years in a little  church in a small town. I liked many of the other members of my youth group, and one of my mother’s best friends was an elder in that church. The Pastors that came and went were decent people whose main fault was that they took the Bible as a literal truth that must be practiced point by point. {The more I study this rich resrource, the more I find that is an impossibility. Onc can, without doubt or hesitation, most often follow the principles incited, but the literal obedience would have you stoning your  children to death for misbehavior. Perhaps a temptation, but never a possibility.}

I enjoyed that church, and the point of most of the sermons was learning to live a life that hermes1honors Creator. I had only one reservation in that church, and have heard from friends still there that it is better now. There was this hesitation regarding a sense of humor and the appropriateness of laughter because of some faulty translations in the Old Testament. I can be sure they are faulty because, though it is translated as laughter perhaps even appropriately, it is about a humor that hurts others. That is never right for those on a spiritual path.

However, there are places in the psalms that ring with joy, and one is encouraged to make that joyful noise before the Lord. It is impossible to have that kind of joy and not laugh and smile. In the reverse, no humor that makes it’s point through hurting the well-being of another, or taking power over another is part of that joy. In that joy, one cannot take delight in another’s sorrow or trouble, such a reaction to life is not possible when one resides so totally in the Spirit that one has that depth of joy.

Yeah, I kinda hammered that, sorry. But it is necessary to make that distinction. Especially for people like myself. I was reared by a man whose skill with sarcasm was razor edge sharp. I was capable of such wit that I could wound another with a few words. One day I had so wounded a dear friend with my sarcasm that I nearly ruined the friendship, and though she forgave me, it was a while before she could trust me not to hurt her again so deeply. I have only indulged in such repartee (since Spirit brought my shortcoming to my attention) when the person had so completely disregarded the well-being of others around them as to cry to be brought down. {I was more than happy to comply.} There is a time and place for all things, one must be mindful, however, that one will answer for every word that comes from one’s mouth, don’t wound the innocent or those who truly intend good, even when sorely tempted and the path laid out before you.

Just remeber, there is humor that wounds, not to be practiced by those who follow the Ruach Ha’Kodesh, and there is humor that heals, always appropriate, any time of night or day.

Balance and Beauty ~

Buddha taught that life led in moderation, called the Middle Way, was a life of balance. Most Native American tribes, and the Kaballists teach that beauty and balance are the way to live. They are the same teaching, from different perspectives. Our little Kung Fu master demonstrates the beautiful sense of balance gained from working with Tai Chi, a form of martial art developed for meditation and control rather than combat.

Part of the deeper beauty of all of these paths is that they do not teach a static balance, as though one were standing in one spot, never to move again, but a  dynamic balance that prepares one for the changes and jostling that are a part of everyday life. I love the path of mysticism, though could never truly enjoy life on a mountain top, living as a recluse. I like people, flawed, imperfect, warts and all, I love to be in the midst of things. I do not have to be the center of attention, in fact prefer to be a bit on the side, but I definitely like to be part of an interactive show.

I think the reason I was drawn to mystic spirituality was that there was always room for me to be an individual. I am just as flawed as anyone else, maybe even a bit more. I am not going to achieve perfection in this lifetime. But, though it has been a bit of a bumpy ride, I’ve had a lot of fun!

One of the most important tools in learning to walk that balanced path is the sense of humor, and here I am not talking of laughing at others, but learning to laugh at ourselves and our foolishness. Besides, if I hadn’t been kicked out of the Lutheran church for thinking in circles, life would have been incredibly boring! Garrison Keillor says Lut’rans can’t have any fun! I love the Prairie Home Companion, with Mr. Keillor’s dry wit and sense of the ridiculous. His entire discourse is a sort of gentle, laugh at oneself, lesson in living. One of my favorite characters of his was Guy Noir. Or was that Guy Noarr?

I was listening to the “tube”, (don’t often watch, but sometimes you see some worthwhile stuff on there,) and Professor Randy Pausch was mentioned. His sense of balance in the act of living and dying was probably as profound as any I have ever seen in action. Having every reason to be angry with G-d, having a young family and a wife with whom he shared a loving relationship, he died with grace and humor, leaving a wonderful legacy for his children.

Among the things most memorable was a comment of his that “Right up there next to being responsible and doing the right thing . . . . .this close,” and he held the thumb and forefinger apart for us to see, perhaps an eigth of an inch “Is having fun.” It would certainly be no shame to have seen this man angry and in tears, as the pain of parting from such a full life would be immense.

That statement is as close as one can come to expressing the concept of walking in beauty and balance. May he be blessed on his journey.

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