Jes’ session on Spontaneity

this is a little overdue lol sry. i only just got ard to finishing it. 

Spontaneity is a quaint thing. It is elusive only when you try to catch it. If not, it remains there, openly available to those who fail to try.

I’m an infJ. That ‘J’ means that I’m a planner. My life revolves around lists, schedules, calendars, folders, files… you get the picture. It’s a pretty organized one (although neatness is another matter). It also means I’m conscious about things. I set goals, create action plans and work step by step to achieve it. I introspect and become self-aware of what I’m doing and saying and the life I’m leading (or trying to lead). Which is why being spontaneous and free is one the most difficult things for me to do.

I had my first trysts with spontaneity in sec 3, when I got close to my band friends. I won’t elaborate much. Suffice to say that, if not for them, I probably would be trapped in the throes of perfectionism, stuck in a private hell of unreachable goals and insatiable achievements. It’s a worldview that I’m immensely grateful to them for broadening.

I saw a book at kino the last time I went for a sale. It was titled ‘Obliquity’, written by a psychologist who theorizes that the most important things in life – peace, happiness, relationships – cannot be directly pursued. They only truly come about when they are the side-effects, rather than the goals of our actions. You can’t find peace by fighting for it, because fighting isn’t peace; you can’t attain happiness by struggling for it, because struggling isn’t happiness; you can’t retain love by jealously guarding it, because jealousy isn’t love. All you can do is to predispose yourself to those things, walk around with your hands open and ready to catch the bundle that the stork drops.

Maybe God-moments are something like that. Maybe we can’t pursue it single-mindedly the way we pursue our grades. Maybe all we can do is just to be still, do the things we are good at, and do good in the things that we are at. Then maybe, we’ll stumble upon Him along the way, stop to chat and say hi for a while, and that will sustain us for the next leg of our journey.

Jes asked me how her session titled ‘You Will Not Remember This’ went, that day we studied at poey’s house.

In short, I thought it was a colossal failure. It failed because the memory of her session is fresh and alive in my mind, even after the days have passed. And by immortalizing it on the annals of my blog, I have ensured the failure of her session on a whole new level. Her session will never be forgotten, preserved in the unfailing archives of wordpress.com servers (and in print, when I finally get around to consolidating this year’s blog entries some time next year).

So here’s what I experienced of the session. The first card I got was ‘I am an Ishmael (the bear).’ Lol how epic is that? But more important were the messages – ‘God is in the people’; and ‘God is in the little thoughts we have’. Reading the messages, following the instructions… just struck a chord I guess. It reminds me of an attitude that I try to commit to – that paradise is neither attained nor achieved; it is realized.

Small Tsui (I’m sure Big Swee will agree) alluded to this ‘landscape’ of his as the ‘beauty of epic spontaneous events’. St. Catherine puts it another way – “All the way to heaven is heaven.” We are not yet where we are meant to end up; but I think we are where we are meant to be right now. We only have to be more aware of that.

Wit aside, this was what I really thought: her session was really inspired. I tried for a while to help think of something to capture spontaneity; but I’ve never seen it done as effectively as this.

Haha maybe, this is what Jes intended all along – for us to remember what we did that day precisely because she began with the controversy that we would not remember it. And maybe by writing this, I played into the hands of the cunning reverse psychologist. But if I have, well then, praise God anyway =)

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About Mel

I dreamt I was a whale. https://melvynfoo.wordpress.com/about-mel/