There is a lot of talk of seeking balance in our lives. We talk about the fact that we are working too much. Or perhaps we are spending too much time alone. Too much thinking, not enough heart. We may be looking for the places in our lives where we are out of balance. We think that if we only had more balance, everything would be so much better!
Yet I am not so sure balance is what we are really striving for. Remember teeter-totters? If you stand at one end and slowly walk towards the middle, you will feel the board begin to tilt. You adjust and keep walking toward the midpoint. With every step you are altering yourself so that you can stay on the board. After you hit the middle, you keep going ahead and slowly the board in front of you will tip forward and you can walk off the other end. As you were moving along the board there was only one spot where you were balancing the board perfectly.
What do you notice when you are at that balance point? You have to stay very very still – even a deep breath can throw your stance off. And what else do you notice? It is very hard to maintain that perfect point of balance. We are actually stuck. One move either direction and we will fall.
So are we really looking for balance in our lives? That place where we cannot move one way or the other for fear of falling? Perhaps our search for balance remains elusive because in nature there is no perfect state of equilibrium. Stability comes from resonating, rhythmic movement. Perhaps what we are really seeking is healthy integration. Of moving: between work and play, between together time and personal time., between rest and activity.
We see this rhythmic activity all around us; the old has to die for the new to emerge. As wood burns it ‘disappears’ and light and warmth are created. Each season makes way for a new one. The water on this planet is always circulating and changing form. It moves between liquid to solid to gas. It circulates around the entire planet. It is not still or balanced. If it was we would not be able to survive.
The same movement and rhythm that is all around us, not only in our bodies and on this planet but in the entire universe, is the same rhythm that sustains us. As living human beings – we have a physical pulse within us that we can feel. We are aware of our heartbeat and the rhythm of our breath. This movement is what keeps us alive and healthy. If any of our human rhythms are out of step we are certainly very aware of it right away.
Perhaps it’s time to acknowledge that our health and our wholeness come from an integration of the various aspects of our lives. It is in the movement of life that we thrive. Then we can look at our rhythmic, resonating days and weeks with appreciation that we are truly in sync with what sustains and enlivens us.
Vicki Vanderhorst is a Licensed Unity Teacher and grateful inhabitant of earth. Her profound joy is to create sacred space where we can discover and experience our spiritual greatness.