the futility of legs


shoes in puddle

Why do we have legs?

Think about the metaphors we use which are enabled by legs.

We can walk away.  We can run away.  We can stand our ground. We can stand on our own two feet. We can make strides. We can walk in someone else’s shoes. We can put our foot down.  We can leg it.  We can cool our heels.  We can have an Achilles’ heel. We can stamp our foot. We can drag our feet. We can be fleet of foot. We can stand down. We can have the world at our feet. We can start off on the right foot. We can have itchy feet. We can stand firm. We can land on our own two feet. We can put our foot in our mouth. We can be on our last legs. We can put our feet up. We can step on someone’s toes. We can pull someone’s leg. We can stand out. We can have two left feet. We can shoot ourselves in the foot. We can set foot somewhere. We can have a foot in both camps. We can trip ourselves up. We can be legs akimbo. We can stand tall. We can get a leg up.  We can get fresh legs. We can be encouraged to break a leg, for luck. We can do the legwork. We can leave with our tail between our legs. We can stand back. We can get our sea legs. We can talk the hind legs off a donkey. We can step out. We can stand around. We can get a foot in the door. We can put our best foot forward.  We can stand tall. We can stand on the shoulders of giants. We can find ourselves without a leg to stand on. We can even get our leg over… and that can cost an arm and a leg!

All could be metaphors for our approach to life.  How we come to living.

Maybe legs are a distraction to our stance to life?
What stance do you choose?
Are there patterns?
Might you choose a different stance?

simulating life

I got to sit in a simulator last week. A flight simulator for a 747.

The complex software can mimic situations the pilot might find themselves in. It looks and feels like the real thing. Climbing, banking, landing, shuddering in turbulence. The flight crew can test handling the plane in any emergency, as well as practising routines like take off and landing.

Every year they return to the simulator to effectively take their driving test again. Useful. Reassuring.

Where are the life simulators?

Why can’t we practice?
Test out possible life situations?
Run the routine ones, over and over, to ensure we get them right?
Where is the life test?
And where is the re-test?

the move for movement

movement change reflection now
Water seldom stands still.

Part of the endless water cycle. Rain, snow, hail and other precipitation falls. It runs from mountain to valley, it seeps into the ground, it pours into rivers. Driven by gravity, it is drawn down towards the earth. Providing a life source for plants, humans and other species. Then, from the land, the oceans and seas, evaporation and condensation draw the water up again, high into the atmosphere where the cycle begins again.

Water in many forms, with many uses. Always moving, always transforming, always serving.

As human beings we too seem drawn to movement. To move away from a past or present truth or to move towards a future one. Drawn too to transformation. Drawn to experiment. To change our state. To experience change. To work towards something. To grow our usefulness. To breathe life into something, someone. To find a new place. To simply find a place.

The inevitability of movement.

Yet water pauses too. Beads of water hesitate in the arms of the leaf, pause as a dew droplet on a blade of grass, hang in the air in a foggy breath, rest for a moment in the rock pool. Socialise with friends in the puddle, the lake.

Water reflects the beauty of now. The glassy eye of the water bead displaying its surroundings in a full panorama. The puddle reflecting passers by, life in action.

As human beings we would do well to mimic this behaviour too. To pause in the moment of now. Life comes in these moments of rest, these moments of reflection, these moments of connection with each other and the world we live in. For in one sense this is our purpose.

The cycle of movement will continue, relentlessly. It will happen whether we seek it or not. Just like the water cycle, it will complete. But like the water droplet, we would do well to pause, to reflect the light around us. Ours and that of others.