Life is Static Ecstasy and How to Find Contentment

Stewart Lundy has an essay on the paradox of how life is constant and static and yet full of movement and progress at the same time, and that both are necessary.

Read the article or here are some excerpts below:

Life is a constant ecstasy (ek-stasis) which always draws us out of the stability of non-motion into the feeling of instability with constant motion. Life is static ecstasy—constant, consistent movement….

Progress is made by focusing on the tedium between A and B (e.g., studying, working out, going to church) rather than trying to skip ahead. Generally speaking, the progress of receiving grades flows from the process of studying; the progress of health from working out; and spiritual wellbeing from religious habits.

The threshold of point B is an initiation, the beginning of a new stage of the same process, a continuation of the same progress. Baptism, eucharist, marriage. Each of these operates as a threshold, but are not resting points. The process continues beyond the words “I do”—in fact, the process is precisely living the words “I do.”

While it is one of the most frustrating aspects of our lives, the constant repetition of the same process is the only way to make the progress from A to B. Like a wheel revolving around the same axis over and over, itis the only way to make the car move forward. Or, on an even more practical level, walking from A to B requires the process of moving your left foot, then your right foot, then your left foot. If you stop the process, you stop the progress.

If we can become enamored with the human walk in itself, not merely as a way of getting from A to B, life will be much more pleasant. Instead of always thinking of A in terms of utility (“A will help me get to B, so I’ll suffer through it now”) and rather enjoying life as it is, you will find contentment in the present.


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