September 5, 2015

Burn the Haystack. Find the Needle.

Gordian Knot

I’ve no doubt that you’ve heard the idiom “Like looking for a needle in a haystack.”

It’s based on the idea that it’s hard to find a sewing needle in a haystack. It means when something is almost impossible to find.

It got me thinking about the Holy Grail and the Arthurian legends attached thereto. Just in case you’re not up to speed. The Holy Grail was the cup used by Christ in the last supper. And, in which Joseph of Arimathea received Christ’s blood on the cross. As far as I know, nobody has found the Grail yet. It’s rumoured to be in Ethiopia according to Indiana Jones.

Thus, a Grail quest refers to something that we desire but it is just about impossible to achieve.

If you’ve spent any time with yourself you’ve no doubt craved something for just you, haven’t you?

We all want something. And, it’s different for all. What is it for you? Power, money, fame, relationships, status, peace, friendship, harmony, fulfilment, security, cars, houses and heaven?

Here’s the question, “If you want something, why don’t you already have it?”

Why is the thing that haunts our dreams so difficult to find? Like the proverbial needle in the haystack?

I might have an angle, and an answer. But, first let me just put it out there … wanting wealth, power, money and fame is just a sideshow. It’s not why you’re dancing on this planet with your allotted 2-billion or so seconds. In my opinion, you and I are here to get our heart, soul and spirit right. We’re here to stand in awe of the magnificence that we live in. We’re here to live in gratitude for that which we already have and that is still waiting for us.

So, now that I’ve sucked the fun out of wanting ‘stuff’, let’s go there anyway. Perhaps, the reason we don’t get what we want is because of one word: Excuses.

Burn your damn excuses!

I think the human condition is one overflowing with excuses and justification. We always have a reason why we couldn’t, shouldn’t and didn’t.

We try. We don’t do (stealing the concept from Yoda). Or as Carlos Castaneda wrote, “A warrior lives by acting, not thinking about acting.”

I believe that if we were to complain less, justify less and make fewer excuses, we would be a lot nearer to our goals.

We also have an insatiable need to complicate what is simple, don’t we? And, we use complication and the drama we create in our lives as excuses to why we are not where we should be.

The Gordian Knot

Let’s go back in time to see if there’s another way to deal with ‘complication’. When he was appointed king, Gordius dedicated his oxcart to Zeus, tying it up in a peculiar knot. An oracle foretold that he who untied the knot would rule all Asia. Many people tried to untie the the ‘Gordian Knot’. It persisted in thwarting everyone for 100 years. Then, in 333 B.C,  23-year-old Alexander the Great arrived in Gordium.

He couldn’t resist attempting to untie the legendary ‘Gordian Knot’.

He struggled with it for a while and became more and more frustrated in his attempts. He unsheathed his sword and said, “What does it matter how I loose it?” With one powerful stroke he severed the knot and the whole of Asia opened up to him.

Perhaps it would be an idea for you and me to stop complicating your lives and making excuses. Stop thinking about acting and start taking action. Cut our ‘Gordian Knot’ so that ‘Asia’ can reveal its splendour to you and me.

Just burn the haystack. Find the needle. Do it now. Life is too short to mess about, it’s too short for excuses and it’s too short to watch opportunities pass you by. Go for it because as the old saying goes, “we regret more the things we didn’t do than the things we did.”

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