Throw the ball. Don’t aim.


Day 307 – In today’s reading, Rolf discusses knowledge and beyond knowledge.  The metaphor he uses is the baseball pitcher, writing:  “To aim the ball is to come from a place of knowledge, of trying to control events.”  So, too, in life’s current pursuits or calling (which is to say, for me, teaching middle school VE) I often aim.  Rolf writes that aiming the ball is akin to affirming one’s separateness.  And, indeed, I think my students feel this separateness.  In aiming each and every day, my mind is full of chatter, mistaken for possibilities and false realities.

This weekend’s experience at the FEA Delegate Assembly taught me much.  I think that knowledge is important, taking action is paramount, speaking up and out where injustice or improprieties rear their heads is imperative; however, I learned to just “throw the ball,” too.  By the third day, fueled with MY food and good sleep, I was in the flow of things.  What I soon realized is that in the presence of other public educators, facing many of the same challenges I do in their classrooms, schools, and communities, and being surrounded by like-minded, passionate, knowledgeable community, makes a huge difference in mindset.  It literally fuels, regenerates, lifts me up.

Rolf writes that throwing the ball, there is no sound; it is “let go into the flow of the moment, to trust events and your place in them.”   Further, he likens this to yoga, writing:  “We can think about a posture or we can embody it fully, without reservation.”  Practice is important.  Knowledge is important.  It is on these that we embody our art.  So, in life, as in yoga practice, or meditation, I can be at war with myself, “trying to stay with the breath,” or I can “surrender and soften into stillness,” that which lies beyond knowledge.

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