Horse and Rider

Horse and Rider

When my brother walks into my life I am delighted. He is a man of like passions and spirit. When he rides in on a horse  I am guarded. Whether the horse be named Reverend or Doctor or Sir, a man on horseback moves about differently than a man on foot.

Horses are of a different passion and spirit. A horse is always noticed before the rider and rightly so. Though the rider may hold the reins, the horse may carry the bit in its teeth.

I am on foot. Perhaps tomorrow my brother will be on foot again also.

Knowledge – Belief – Behavior

Knowledge, Belief and Behavior

Knowledge is no guarantee of right behavior. Knowledge by itself is a man sprinting on one leg. It has an insuperable weakness in that knowledge and the corresponding response to knowledge have an arbitrary nature about them. I may appear to behave according to what I know, but I frequently do not. Some say knowledge is power. Potential power perhaps, but as it effects behavior it is essentially impotent. Examples of behavior contrary to knowledge abound. I have a theory; all behavior, functional and dysfunctional, is compulsive. By that I mean that there is something in us that is so compelling that knowledge alone is an inadequate motivation. I really want to do one thing but contrary to what I want to do, I do its opposite. I really do not want to do something but in the end I do it anyway. Exterior pressures may exert considerable influence, but in the final analysis even these pressures are inadequate masters of behavior.

As a form of knowledge, coping skills abound to modify behavior sufficiently to avoid certain consequences. But like a too short blanket, coping skills can be tugged first one way then another, as needed, but in the final analysis they are still too short.

I would suggest that it is only as knowledge is coupled with belief that it is possible to run on two legs. Behavior is the sum total of what is believed, and will not allow of aberrant acts lest a verdict of incompetent by virtue of insanity be rendered. Believing is behavior. Behavior is the proof of believing. That is why judgment according to what one does is justice. Behavior is the infallible proof of what is believed. Note that behavior is proof of what is believed, not whether they believe or not. Do you wish to know what a man believes? Watch what he does.

Would you change behavior? Address what is believed.

 

Later

A self-contained game plan for nothing.

Blessed are the compulsive for they shall be busy. Blessed are the procrastinators for they shall have nothing. More blessed are they who do the right thing at the right time for they have overcome the power of “later.” The story of ones life doesn’t appear as a book fully written. It proceeds one word at a time, one line at a time, one page at a time, and without prior permission. A Life Story is that journal wrote large. So, how does one seize the day? Perhaps it would be revealing to say “We are the sum total of our choices.” OK, so how has that worked out? If we continue to do what we have always done we may reasonably expect our future to resemble our past. Incidentally, our future will come to us in the same way as our past. It is not yet a book fully written and published. It will come to us one word at a time, one line at a time, one page at a time. Perhaps one could say, “We shall be defined by the sum total of our continuing choices.” Will we continue to do what we have always done?
The antidote for Later: NOW.
…behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of… —St Paul  (2Cor 6:2)

Entice

Entice: to attract by offering a hope of reward or pleasure —Webster’s New World Dictionary

Enticement never asks permission before invading your space, trespassing upon your awareness, breaking your concentration; stomping by your window waving a flamboyant dare to ignore it as an act of the will.

It differs from temptation. Temptation is just another after-market deal compared to this beastie. Temptation says simply, here is the product (caveat emptor) and the suggested retail price, open of course to terms. It’s a five senses thing, I see it, I want it (or not), I buy it (or not). Any animal can be tempted.

Enticement presents as the royal precursor to opportunity. It is not of the senses though it may come by the senses. Enticement spins its web in the day room of the imagination. Nothing can soar to the heights of desire like imagination —beauty possessed, virtue captured, whim of delight at your beck and call. But imagination can’t produce the objective reality around which temptation coils. Enticement does have, however, in its DNA string a hope factor. It seizes upon a linchpin, some small handle, i.e. quasi-fault embedded in the subject, and necessarily within reach of the mesmerized psyche to open the door to possibilities.

Some examples; Have you ever wondered why models and movie stars of years past would paste a dark colored “beauty mark” on their face in plain view of everyone? Have you ever considered the power of the wink as a linchpin of hope? Why is it that the most provocative of cultural icons are the ones with an enhanced irregularity, notably of the eyes or mouth?

Forgive a very crude and barely applicable analogy, but a while back I was shopping for a new appliance, top of the line, latest model, and current rage. What I discovered was I simply could not afford that appliance. Oh, well. Then I saw the dent in the side of it. That dent made all the difference. Hope sprang to life and – salesman! oh salesman!

…the prince of this world cometh, but he has nothing in me. (Jesus – Jn 14:30)

Value

I was browsing an antique shop one afternoon and stopped to admire a bookcase. As I explored its features another person walked up and joined in conversation. As it turned out he was the owner of another shop and just happened to have a similar one  in his inventory. Looking at the price tag he fell into a monologue about pricing. As I discovered, he was also a frustrated ex-auctioneer. “Everybody else knew better than he the value of things,” he said sarcastically, and his conclusion to the matter was, ”Then let them sell it themselves!” On that unhappy note the conversation ended.

Later, as I was pondering this encounter it settled out uncommonly easily. Of course the owner of a piece has a higher valuation of the piece than the hired hand who sells it. His cost translates into a chunk of life determined by however long it took to earn the purchase price. And then there is the value added cost of all the memories  and other associations involved in the piece. Really! And what would a man take in exchange for his soul? How does a man redeem his time?

For the auctioneer it is only worth what the market will bear. His interest is to simply facilitate a quick sale, collect all fees and commissions, and leave. The piece cost him nothing.

Value is like that.