Endings

Maybe it's comforting to think about endings, since we're only actually halfway through the month.  O.O

The Buddhists have this lovely metaphor of "eight winds", explaining how the forces of external life-stuff shove at you, challenging you to maintain your balance and keep your feet planted (or your stance rooted, if you like the kungfu angle).  The "winds" are basically four kinds of pleasure (gain, praise, etc) and four kinds of pain (loss, dissin', etc) — exactly what you'd think.  There could just as easily be two kinds, or four, but the Chinese hate(d) the number four and love(d) eight, and were probably too fancy for two, so there you go. 

This is related to endings, I swear. 

The thing about endings is, they're all arbitrary, anything could be seen as an ending; but every one shares one characteristic:  You have to get to them.  The ending is a point you have to make it to, and the only way to do that..yup, is to keep your balance while those winds are hitting you.

The false thing about the idea of endings is that after them, the winds stop — ha, no, because again, they're all arbitrary, which means that there's always an ending past the one you're thinking about.  So after you make it there, however it goes, things keep going on, largely indifferent to the fact that you happened to think there was an end-point there.

And I used to think that that falsity meant that constructing or declaring endings was a mistake; but I take that back.  As long as we don't forget they're all arbitrary and minor in the scheme of things, as long as we aren't fooled into expecting the winds to just stop because we Reached That Point we were aiming for, I now think they can be quite healthy. 

For one thing, I couldn't have done any of these blog posts without leaning heavily on my completely arbitrary idea of The Ending of it.  I've always had such trouble stopping writing, because I'm always so hyper-aware that I'm making up the part where it stops, and that I could be (am!) changing everything, the whole story, by deciding that place should be X instead of Y.  It's harrowing, let me tell you.  I am so aware that nothing stops where I say it does, or when I give up on continuing to tell it.  So every time I reach an ending, I kinda feel like a liar.

But I've had to get comfortable with endings, these last two weeks.  To admit that even though they're fake, they have value; they're part of this craft (and most others), and part of living.  A curse of consciousness, I guess; a price you have to pay in order to Do Stuff.

This makes all our symbolism of the Reaper and Death really interesting to me, by the way.  Cutting the string, ending the story, is a task none of us wants, maybe, so we dress it in black and fear and try to convince ourselves that it's a force outside our control.  Buuuuut the evidence, I think, says otherwise.  An ending exists in our minds.  That's an idea that just gets more sobering the more I let it be, y'know?

I ended some things today, including this.  All the parts involved will keep spinnin', and the winds of their effects will keep buffetting me around (more or less successfully, depending on my stance), but to me, that thing as I had encapsulated it is over.

This thing is over, because I said it is, and for no other reason.  To the Universe, nothing of any note has changed whatsoever. 

It is both a tiny meaningless action, and a terrifying power to be forced to wield.

Let's do it again tomorrow, shall we?

About puredoxyk

Word addict, kungfu/taiji nut, and life-partner to polyphasic sleep. Rabid fan of as many hobbies as the world will let me pry into its piddly fourth dimension (it helps to have knocked out the wall).
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