Darlene Cohen

‘We’ve all been conditioned since childhood to focus on getting things as an indication of achievement, be it material like a new car, or intangible like a promotion. We experience this striving in endless subtle forms all the time. We cook our food in order to have dinner. We wash our clothes in order to have clean clothes. We go to work to make money in order to eat, to have shelter, to buy things we desire. We get on the bus in order to go someplace, and o on. Much of our activity is to produce a desired result. This makes a lot of sense. It’s common sense. The trouble with thinking this way, though, is that it tends to focus us on the outcome rather then on the effort of our activity itself. We barely notice the cooking, the cleaning, the  bus ride, the working, except that it takes time away from what we think we really want to do. And after so many years of looking ahead to the results of our doing rather than focusing on the doing itself, we don’t even notice the taste of the food, the smell of the clean clothes, the moment we leap off the bus at our destination (“Wow! I’m here!”), the brief but hallowed moment of receiving our paycheck. We’re trained now to focus ahead – to the next paycheck perhaps. This one’s already spent and therefore no fun. We miss whatever’s in front of us.’ (The One Who is not Busy)

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