Be Unprepared

“It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is Be Unprepared
“It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power.”

Alan Cohen

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When travelling, you’ll frequently hear of the virtues of planning and preparation. Of course, a certain amount is a necessary part of getting from point A to point B, but this Yang part of the journey has a complementary Yin component which requires an attitude of openness and possibility. If you have to tack down every hour of the day into a set agenda in order to feel that your journey is going to plan and that you are achieving your goal, all those random unexpected opportunities for connection, insight or taking a leap into the unknown , will pass you by. You will end up with someone else’s journey, following someone else’s plan.

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Just think of the travel guide books and their powerful impact on our consciousness. They can be great at the very beginning of a journey in some respects, but that certainty they can provide comes at the cost depleting your own capacity for self determination to their influence on where you go and what you do. Take Bill Bryson’s books for example and how he has presented Australia as a place full of dangerous creatures.
When I was in Canada, I met quite a few people who kept quoting or referring to his negative portrayal of our flora and fauna, causing fear in the local populace.

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Sure, we have plenty of unique species of wild animals but most times its our species from whom nature has most to fear with our limitless ability for endangering the lives of our animal co-habitants. We are far more dangerous to them than they are to us.
On the journey, leaving  space and time to see what emerges can allow for delightful happenstances to occur. Waiting outside a café, you fall into conversation with a local who gives you the lowdown on where to go and what to avoid;local knowledge which can change the contour of you journey for the better.

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Being unprepared means being willing to invite the unknown into your life. This unpredictable agency of change can reveal aspects of yourself and life you could not have previously imagined . It can be either thrilling or scary ;sometimes both. Most of all it will be an experience that calls forth the authentic you. You might look back in wonder at the previously unacknowledged parts of you that came to life when the plan broke down or the route diverged.   And of course planning and preparation do not ensure a set outcome. With travel and life, the gods of chaos and change are always on the lookout to shake us awake. And aren’t we lucky that they are!

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