Saturday, January 16, 2010

Glass of water

Notice.-- This was first written and posted on my Dysthymia blog (see my profile for my blogs), but it overlaps into my view of Taoism as both my Dysthymia and Taoism are inextricably linked in my mind and part of my sense of being and living, so I am duplicating it here for others to read.

Glass of Water

Why do they always ask you about the glass of water half filled with water, "Is the glass half empty or half full?" What not just say, "It's a glass of water." Why is the water seen as optimism and the air as pessimism? Or better yet ask, "Gee, I'm thirsty, do you mind if I drink it?" Or ask, "What type of water?", meaning where did come from, to know it's origin more than the faucet.

Why can't an optimist say, "It needs to be filled up."? Or, a pessimist say, "Maybe someone is thirsty."? Why do they want to assign some qualitative value to a clear glass of water? Relative to its content of water and air? Why can't they give you the option to say it's both, half full and half empty, an equal amount of each?

Well, I don't know but psychologist love to make things an either-or judgement to see which side of the fence you mentally live. Like it matters? For what? It doesn't change you, and certainly not the glass of water. Only them making some judgement of you, not that it's important or critical, just personal to them.

Which means, to me, it's simply cow pasture material. A Taoist would look at the glass and say, "It's a glass of water." Nothing more than the simple observation. A realist would say, "Well, is anyone going to do anything with the glass of water?" Nothing more than thinking out loud.

But it's at the heart of many psychologist's, or therapist's, questions, the either-or idea to discover something good or bad about you or your thoughts, emotions, or feelings. And if you can't or don't want to make a choice, then they'll push until you make it, meaning your reaction is now part of their judgement.

Like, "So why are you afraid to say if the glass is half full or half empty?" Like it matters? And if you, "The glass is both half full and half empty.", they will ask you why you thinks it's both. Like it's the reality of the glass and the air and water inside it? Why are we driven to either-or choices?

Taoism teaches you it's both as both are necessary to the balance of the world. And Dysthymia teaches you to see it's both, like there isn't any other reality, let alone a choice between two, if not more, choices. It's always, "All of the above." when it comes to life and the world.

I would ask, "Why a clear glass?" Why not an opague one you can't quite see the line between the water and air? Why not a black one where you have to imagine the air and water? Would they ask to imagine and decide, make a choice? Why? What does it say about you? What does it tell the psychologist? They all don't interpret the answer the same, so then why answer?

The whole world of your mind, all in a glass of water. And now I'm thirsty.