MapWorld or Presence?

“We tend to overlook it (reality) in favor or the abstract map-world that thought has painted. But all the while, the actuality (reality) is effortlessly and spontaneously functioning in perfect harmony.” Joan Tollifson: “Death, The end of self-improvement.”

I can live in mapworld, that extracted world of ideas, thoughts, and dreams for days. It’s a place where I can change anything by wishing a new scenario, or change the past by manipulating reality into another fantasy. I can suffer and experience the most intense feelings in mapworld, I spend days tied up in little knots, while the “actuality” as Joan refer’s to it, continues moving along quite nicely, parallel to mapworld but never quite connecting, but often annoying to those of us living exclusively in mapworld.

Life always turns out the way I want in mapworld, somehow I win, am successful, knowing, sophisticated, empathetic, and caring, (and attractive and young) while in the world of actuality I have moments when I’m in a hurry and YOU! for whatever reason, are driving slow, way to slow, maybe ten miles under the speed limit. In mapworld, I’m driving a tank and run you off the road, in “actuality” life is unfolding exactly where it unfolds, I can only be in the unfolding, paying attention, and using what I can to reduce any of the wobbling that comes with living in this part of the universe. (My hope is that some other part of the universe is wobble free!)

I’m not a purist, I don’t believe I’m going to become “enlightened” or reach someplace called “nirvana.” Those places are in mapworld, only to be embraced in illusion and delusion that is the reality of mapworld. I believe it takes both in balance, mapworld and actuality, to fully embrace the totality of a Being, Human.

This morning, I noticed returning from mapworld on my walk, I smile, breathe, and notice how crystal clear the moon is shining through a break in the clouds.

Bryan Wagner

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