Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Joy of Lack

An oxymoron, isn't it? "What joy comes from lack, and where did you get that title?" are questions you may be asking. Well, the title came from the thought of wasting time. I was on Facebook for two hours playing diffferent Zynga games, and I began to wonder why do I spend so much time with games. The simplest answers are:

1. They're fun
2. They provide easy entertainment
3. Sometimes they're mindless actions, and mindless actions can be restful/peaceful.
4. The results of your actions are immediate.

So that's the joy. Not having to think too much and experiencing immediate results from your actions. In the case of the Zynga games, if I keep doing actions to collect coins I can build things. Watching my creations grow can be rewarding.

But then, that is where the lack comes in. Yes, watching more buildings erect or planted crops grow is cool when it comes to the virtual world, but what about the real world? The abundance that I'm creating for myself virtually by collecting coins, building houses, and picking crops is equating to lack in my reality. The only thing I'm getting done during this time is resting; however, as Newton's First Law of Motion implies a body at rest remains at rest.

So, while my virtual world continues to grow and as I continue to take joy from its growth, my real world goes lacking. To restate, the joy found in those few hours equates to even greater hours of lack happening in my reality.

During this time of change, let's find a way to wean ourselves of those things that create temporary joys but create longer lasting results of lack.

6 Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:
7 Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler,
8 Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest.
9 How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep?
10 Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep:
11 So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth, and thy want as an armed man.
(Proverbs 6:6 KJV)