Do nothing.

Discombobulated.

I bought a book on my recent trip to New Zealand. “500 Words You Should Know” by Caroline Taggart.

The first word my daughter pointed out was “discombobulated”.

And it’s the perfect word to describe how I have been feeling these past few months.

According to this book, discombulated is “a jokey word meaning exactly what it sounds as if it means: confused, disconcerted, ‘thrown’ in a big way. You might be discombobulated by an interrruption or by the appearance of an unexpected guest; on a bad day you could be generally discombobulated, not with it and unable to cope with the many questions that life throws at you.”

Life has been throwing many questions at me and I have not been able to cope.

And in my quest to find some solace in this rather noisy and upset world, I came across the “art of doing nothing” – 無為 (pronounced WU WEI or oooo-way) – a Chinese concept from Lao Tsu. It literally means “no trying” or “no doing”, but it is not about doing nothing. It is rather a state of mind where one is in his/ her most natural state, in harmony with one’s surroundings/ situation. And also a state of “effortless action”.

Seems to make so much sense and no sense whatsoever to me at the same time.

And in exploring this concept, I have somewhat already found some peace and answers.

Isn’t that the Art of Doing Nothing?

From being/ feeling discombulated, not in harmony with myself and the world around me, what I seek is the state of 無為 – through effortless inaction. To just be.

The past few months has been a state of frantic action, goal oriented planning and doing which has thrown me off balance. So much so that I no longer enjoyed the things I once loved.

So I decided that I will do nothing.

Till balance is restored, or at least till I am combobulated. (If there is such a word…)

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