The Happiness of Inverse Proportions: Humble Dog/ Small god
Monday, February 8, 2016
I heard the roof creaking in the wee hours and exhalations from the old refrigerator. I imagined waking to piles of snow, but then, I didn’t hear any plows and, indeed, this morning the tarmac is black and some of the slippery iced divots have coalesced into fewer locations by the wind. The wind has also swept drier the smoother surface of the parking lot. And I am both edgy and curious to see what the wind will bring. How much snow? How heavy? How havoc-wreaking with my schedule for the day? At least my seven and eight o’clock appointments will arrive. Both have confirmed.
I woke thinking about happiness at its most emotionally elevated. Euphoria: a rapture of singing nerve endings and a mind expanding gymnastically. Euphoria is a magical address like Alice’s Wonderland where possibilities seem endless and infinite and the present bubbles in the vast cauldron of itself. Euphoria engulfs. There is some brinksmanship to jumping into the cauldron. But once in, we are consumed, awed, permeable, permissive, dis-inhibited.
And yet, like a thin silk cord, a vein of attention sluices off a bit of down-light from such heat and effulgence. And then we experience more dimming, more cooling, in an unconscious self-reclaiming, self-regulatory process.
Soon the down-light, the softening, begins to feel good, in its own diminutive way, as does sleepiness feel relieving after a full day, or an empty mind after a problem is solved meticulously. Our bodies humbly serve our illustrious ambitions and unfettered imaginations like obedient dogs, but only to the point where the leash is stretched to its maximum tautness between the two realms. We are both the dogs and their small gods, tethered on this precious planet, but afloat in a vast space.
Is happiness the spice or the meal, the ecstatic mirage or the camel’s back? The dance or catching the breath?
Guest saddle: What’s one of your euphoric experiences or imaginings? How did you recover? Who are you as ‘dog?’ Who are you as ‘small god?’