Coffee Rhetoric: Off-Balance

August 19, 2009

Off-Balance

"If I had a world of my own, everything would be nonsense. Nothing would be what it is, because everything would be what it isn't. And contrary wise, what is, it wouldn't be. And what wouldn't be it would. You see?" Italic
-Alice, Alice in Wonderland
I don't know the minute intricacies of the term 'qui' (better recognized as 'chi'), but my research has indicated that it basically translates to "energy flow," and is compared to western notions of energeia or elan vital. Further research and etomology indicates that energeia was a technical term used widely by Aristotle and may or may not be the source for the word energy... or the term 'being at work', activity or perhaps actuality. Elan vital, on the other hand (coined by French philosopher Henri Bergson in his book 'Creative Evolution'), more or less translates to "vital force"... electricity, life, essence being breathed into something or other...
What does all of this philosophical rambling mean? In plain language, it's me saying my chi... my energy... my life force is off balance. Suddenly, despite my optimism (and struggle to remain so), is on shaky ground. I have these intermittent moments (exacerbated by PMS) where I'm gripped by anxiety: My stomach hurts and is all gurgly, I may get a headache, my sinuses become plugged giving way to a sore throat, a zit or two, cumulus clouds reign for the briefest of moments and I start brooding. My mood becomes dark. I become leery, introspective, somewhat misanthropic, because then I start mulling things over. People aren't who or what they seem. ... Gripping, I feel as if I'm hanging on by the tips of my fingers. And I'm just... solitary. ... Alone by choice and because sometimes I have no choice. I just am. Some folks don't get, or want to understand just... stuff. Instead they want to dictate, speculate, and worse yet... patronize, forgetting completely what it's like to struggle over a hurdle or to have off days... or to just feel mentally drained. Suddenly I don't have the right to feel worried about the immediate future and my livelihood. So I sort of withdraw and become self-contained.
The hunt is an exasperating process. The climate we're in makes it seem like I'm appealing to a panderer sometimes. And it's disconcerting. Either way, I'm still hanging on. by.the.tips.of.my.fingers. My pride and ego are like an undulating tidal wave, but I'm not broken... just bruised a little.
*Image: Paul Gaugin's The Brooding Woman, 1891