We see it time and again: the excitement and enthusiasm of those who discover something for the first time and want to know ALL about it.
This phenomenon occurs in all areas of life. It permeates everything we do, whether it is cooking dinner for ourselves or deciding to take a night course, starting a relationship or picking out a knitting pattern. Something different is dangled before us and we run headlong to jump in and roll in the shiny newness.
I suffer from “Ooooh, SHINY!” syndrome myself and love the rush I get from a new discovery, be it a person, place, or thing (nouns, anyone?). There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the thrill of the new; without it, life would become stagnant fairly quickly. In my opinion, though, the speed at which some people dive headfirst into new things is an issue.
One of the blogs I follow had a post not long ago about not putting the cart before the horse and it was incredibly apt. Sometimes, in our haste to embrace the shiny NEW THINGS we forget that we don’t really know much about the topic, nor do we know where to start, and so we find something onto which we can latch and…and…and…then we get stuck.
We get stuck on the little things, like what our new lover thinks about the price of tea in China, or what color the cloth for our new altar should be. We worry about proper offerings (is chocolate really always acceptable?), or whether our knife slant is exactly right to turn out carrots like the recipe says. We forget to stop and take a breath. We forget to separate that which matters from that which is nice to have.
Unless we have a vested interest in tea exportation, does it really matter how our lover feels about tea prices? What does matter when we take on a new lover?
If we don’t really understand the reason for an altar, does it really matter what color cloth we use? Where (if anywhere) does an altar fit into the path we want to follow? What is an altar anyway?
We need to slow down and examine why we’re doing in addition to what we’re doing.