© W.David Hoisington, Ph. D.

Monday  11 | 07| 2016

Taking that Other Fork and Getting Lost

If you decide to take this journey of the soul in a mindful manner, then getting lost along the way will happen.  You will realize that at times you took the troubled path.  Life is not perfect and flawless.  We will get lost, but the good news is that it is possible to get back to the middle way. In facing Parkinson’s disease I took the path I’ve always taken in facing challenges: show up, give it everything, show up again and give a little bit more. Do this day after day and whatever challenges in front of me would see progress and eventually be completed. But this time this approach failed. I saw no progress and using this tool box sent me down the road of confusion, pain and suffering. Now that I am not on that fork anymore, I can look back and reflect on where that fork in the road took me. I can clearly see that for a short period time I was lost. But staring down such a dark path is frightening. There is a great terror in staring at the forecast of potential insanity added to the physical issues already being endured with the Parkinson’s disease. Yet I must look down the path, and even travel it a bit, so that I may know what this fork looks like and do what I can to keep myself from getting lost for any extended period. Upon reflection, I can see that I approached dealing with Parkinson’s disease using the toolbox I had with me at the time. It is a toolbox I brought out every time I had large life problem that needed fixing. In the past I was a successful with this toolbox. My tool box has in it what I call Grasping Tiger.  It is a hyper alert state that absorbs (grasps) as much from the environment in any given situation so that I could be completely ready with a defense (tiger).  This Grasping Tiger was quite skilled and turned the skill into a second career in human services.  So I used it for the Parkinson’s problem.  I kept using Grasping Tiger over and over again to face these new Parkinsonian issues, and over and over again it failed. You see, I was using the same tools to deal with the problems and getting the same results that were not helping. And yet at the same time I did not realize this was happening.   Obviously, I thought I could apply Grasping Tiger to myself. I thought I was doing the best I could. But all I was doing was spinning around in confusion with no forward progress on the path towards personal and collective well-being. I was confused and lost, things were getting worse not better. Grasping Tiger doesn’t work with Parkinson’s and I didn’t know, didn’t see, and was lost. Going down the spinning path of confusion, pain and suffering is something that will happen to all of us because we are explorers and we are not omnipotent.  Exploring is as much a part of this process as a plant needing sunshine and rain.  When you spin, you get confused, and then you no longer have the clarity associated with knowing where you are going as you explore. This confusion about where you are as the soul explorer is the elephant in the room and we cannot see it for what it is.   The elephant takes up a lot of room and demands our attention as it represents the hunger of our own needs to avoid pain and suffering. There is a different fork to choose.  How is one to do that if one is lost?  It requires both recognition and responsibility.
We will do our best to post something thoughtful every month.
next next previous previous Continue to All Past Blogs Continue to All Past Blogs
Seeking the Soul of Life

A quest of compassion and finding our “true self”

in the midst of a hectic world

Seeking the Soul of Life: Blog Short essays exploring man’s quest for enlightenment
© W.David Hoisington, Ph.D.

Monday  11 | 07| 2016

Taking that Other Fork

and Getting Lost

If you decide to take this journey of the soul in a mindful manner, then getting lost along the way will happen.  You will realize that at times you took the troubled path.  Life is not perfect and flawless.  We will get lost, but the good news is that it is possible to get back to the middle way. In facing Parkinson’s disease I took the path I’ve always taken in facing challenges: show up, give it everything, show up again and give a little bit more. Do this day after day and whatever challenges in front of me would see progress and eventually be completed. But this time this approach failed. I saw no progress and using this tool box sent me down the road of confusion, pain and suffering. Now that I am not on that fork anymore, I can look back and reflect on where that fork in the road took me. I can clearly see that for a short period time I was lost. But staring down such a dark path is frightening. There is a great terror in staring at the forecast of potential insanity added to the physical issues already being endured with the Parkinson’s disease. Yet I must look down the path, and even travel it a bit, so that I may know what this fork looks like and do what I can to keep myself from getting lost for any extended period. Upon reflection, I can see that I approached dealing with Parkinson’s disease using the toolbox I had with me at the time. It is a toolbox I brought out every time I had large life problem that needed fixing. In the past I was a successful with this toolbox. My tool box has in it what I call Grasping Tiger.  It is a hyper alert state that absorbs (grasps) as much from the environment in any given situation so that I could be completely ready with a defense (tiger).  This Grasping Tiger was quite skilled and turned the skill into a second career in human services.  So I used it for the Parkinson’s problem.  I kept using Grasping Tiger over and over again to face these new Parkinsonian issues, and over and over again it failed. You see, I was using the same tools to deal with the problems and getting the same results that were not helping. And yet at the same time I did not realize this was happening.   Obviously, I thought I could apply Grasping Tiger to myself. I thought I was doing the best I could. But all I was doing was spinning around in confusion with no forward progress on the path towards personal and collective well- being. I was confused and lost, things were getting worse not better. Grasping Tiger doesn’t work with Parkinson’s and I didn’t know, didn’t see, and was lost. Going down the spinning path of confusion, pain and suffering is something that will happen to all of us because we are explorers and we are not omnipotent.  Exploring is as much a part of this process as a plant needing sunshine and rain.  When you spin, you get confused, and then you no longer have the clarity associated with knowing where you are going as you explore. This confusion about where you are as the soul explorer is the elephant in the room and we cannot see it for what it is.   The elephant takes up a lot of room and demands our attention as it represents the hunger of our own needs to avoid pain and suffering. There is a different fork to choose.  How is one to do that if one is lost?  It requires both recognition and responsibility.
New Blog