Life as serious fun

Acrylic on old board painting that I just finished, “The door is Round and Open. Don’t go back to sleep” Rumi *

When I hear people say, “Be careful what you pray for, you might just get it!” I usually don’t say anything, but this line of thinking never felt right to me, and I’ve come to see that it isn’t true. Oh yes, we can all  make things happen. I can put my will-power and determination onto an idea and wrench it into place with extreme effort, but this isn’t my idea of prayers becoming reality.

When I use pure will-power and grit to accomplish a goal, there are feelings that accompany it: struggle, worry and tension. And I’ve done this enough to know how it feels when “my plan” is simply that (and not a part of a larger good/higher ideal for my life). When I have the feeling that if I let up for a second, my goal will dissolve, then I’m usually contemplating a move that isn’t in the highest and best, because if it is, there is an energy, that is me but is also beyond me, and larger than me, that moves things along, opens doors, brings ideas, opportunities, and assistance, that I could never have dreamed of….and I know this feeling too. It feels like “going with the flow”.

Last week, I wrote about wanting to go to Alinea (a restaurant in Chicago). I contacted them (found out I couldn’t even buy tickets for September until mid-July), looked up flights from Albany to Chicago, and read about some interesting B & B’s within walking distance of the restaurant. All of this activity was so much fun.

I was talking with a family member about this, and he said, “Have you figured out the total cost of this trip?” I told him that I had (approximately) and then he said, “I want to pay for your trip as an early birthday present.” That was a total surprise. But I also knew that if this trip to Alinea was meant to be, it would flow….in ways just like this that would also be delightful.

It’s the feeling-tone of the idea/thought that lets me know if I am going in the right direction or heading off onto a side road/dead-end. If I have to work, really hard, to accomplish something, I will have to work really hard to sustain it. If I am worried sick about anything, then that event, relationship, or occurrence, will hold “worried sick” energy.

Prayer, to me, is seeing the outcome that I would like to see and then letting it go (to the best of my ability). But if I find myself thinking about “it” after I have let it go, and I usually do, then I try to make sure that I am not worrying it, struggling with it, or trying to micro-manage it. I want to live my life as play. I want to flow with this great stream, of which I am a part. I want to discover, deep down in my being, the truth that Life is seriously fun!

“Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” Alan Watts


*if you are interested in buying this painting, you can see the details on the My Artwork page or contact me at

5 thoughts on “Life as serious fun”

  1. Wow! This couldn’t be further from a roadblock, could it!? In fact it seems more like an open road, a scenic route, with a sign that says “please enter and enjoy the ride”! Wonderful! xoxo

  2. Mary –

    (A private comment). This is exactly how I ended up coming out here to Michigan! Maybe we can visit you while you’re in Chicago – if I’m here at the same time? Let me know the dates and I’ll see what I can do. The Burlington Bookfest is 9/19-21, but I’m not sure if I’ll be here or in VT at that time. I think I’m moving the bulk of my stuff here the week before, but no firm plans have been set yet. I’ll be living in both locations, but need to get stuff out I storage & release what no longer applies to my current life. A very fun adventure I’m on at the moment! Will fill you in when we talk!

    Hugs – Wendy (From LVW)

    Sent from my happy mobile world to yours!


  3. A couple phrases just jumped off this page, the expression “worried sick”, and your use of the word “worry” in such an active tense as
    “I try to make sure I am not worrying it” – that made me realize that though we often hear the phrase (and use it ourselves) “I am so worried about x, y, z” – that is NOT a passive state. We are actually harnessing our vital energy to actively worry a situation into a continued state of being. And yes, it can and will make us sick. I keep thinking of the visual, “who do you invite to sit alongside you in the passenger seat?” assuming we are in the driver’s seat to begin with, – what do we allow to be our mind’s most intimate companion? I say shoo Lil’ Miss Worry out the door – do not allow her to tether herself to our dreams, our hopes, and the very real problems we will face. Mary, what a delightful surprise from your generous family member! Do so hope this trip comes forth – enjoy the anticipation!

  4. Birds flying free on a gilded crown
    Mary flitting forth for fun
    Don’t sit still in a rut of life
    Burst out and enjoy the run!

  5. In your post of Jun 11 ” Go Forward” I was going to ask about the role of will power , or self determination. Was wonderful to hear you explaining that more fully today. After so much of my life spent worrying ( I even used to think worry was the responsible thing to do !) it still takes much effort on my part to relax whatever grip I thought I had on outcomes! Truly as you remind us , it makes all the difference to our sense of well being to go with where the gentle flow of life and a higher good will take us . After all , to use the allegory of your birds…who fly where the wind takes them , released from the confines of their cage, and then when the storm comes, they take shelter for a while, then shake themselves off again and away they go to the next puffy cloud. Watching them fly or play in puddles of water , don’t they look like they are having fun ?

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