Observing the animals in my yard makes me wonder — the sparrows, lizards, hummingbirds, rabbits. There’s so much purpose in what they do; when they’re going about their routines they’re quiet, alert yet focused. But the minute they feel threatened, even if it’s just a perceived movement, they bolt.

Their lives are about survival and so it’s natural that they react so quickly and dramatically. but what about humans? Beyond our physical safety instincts, do we need to create drama in our lives?

Since we moved to Arizona from New Jersey, it’s been obvious to me that my drama quotient has gone down considerably. There are numerous possibilities as to why, not the least of which is the peace that comes with immersing yourself in natural flow and beauty. Plus we’ve been focusing on enhancing the spirituality we feel so much out here. But one component of life that persists has been the need to occasionally “produce” drama in order to effect shifts in perspective.

In other words, despite an abundance of enlightened conversation, the drama continues for most of us. We may “know better” but our egos grab hold of our throats when confronted with perceived threats and we go into fight or flight mode. My question: Is that necessary?

I would say — yes. We’re human and we have histories, and often to move forward we have to go back a few steps. What’s important is how quickly we notice what we’re doing and intentionally step out of the drama. Often we create our own drama in order to learn something we’ve not been accepting and if we can recognize the opportunity we don’t have to continue to suffer.

For me, the good news is that as my own recognition time has gotten faster. I realize how much we really are in control of this facet of our lives. We can choose how long to stay in the drama zone before we consciously step up and out. This gives us an advantage over those who truly have to stay on perpetual alert in order to survive their circumstances of life.

7 Responses to "Do We Need The Drama?"

  1. Scott Clark

    May 20, 2008

    What is life but a perpetuation of consciousness trying to realize and manifest itself in all forms. What is Drama, but one’s personal delusion, rooted to the society, people, and religion they choose to adhere to and ‘What should be.’

    Drama to me is useless. It is the wasted refuse of self-centered personality trapped in the confines of what society tells them they should be doing. Our spiritual being has no use for Drama, and the underlying root of Drama, I believe, is perhaps the process by which we struggle to survive in society; or our deluded notion of self-preservation realized on a superficial plain.

    Life, if we are in the flow of it, must not be realized by paying attention, but on acting with our heart. I have found the superficial matter between my ears, can often lead me because it is thinking out of social duty, where as my heart is acting out of spiritual identity for what must be achieve in order to fallow one’s path to personal rapture.

    Love yah’ Sunny

  2. sunny

    May 20, 2008

    Scott — yout truly get it. This was written for the rest of us. 😉

  3. Swirly

    May 21, 2008

    A girlfriend and I were talking about this exact thing today, which for me was framed around the question of how much responsibility each of us has to save those we love from themselves. In other words, how much should we give towards trying to rescue others from their dramas and struggles. My friend is embracing the idea that these struggles can be moments of great excitement because they so often lead to tremendous growth…and alongside that I agree with you, that it is important we learn how to recognize when we’re falling down an unhealthy pattern of drama.

  4. sunny

    May 21, 2008

    You know what’s interesting, Swirly, is how we can sometimes get addicted to the excitement inherent in drama. It took me years to understand that some people I was trying to help didn’t ever change because they needed the drama. When it wasn’t there they created it. I used to joke, half-heartedly, they they worshipped at the church of Perpetual Crisis.

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  7. Lauren

    May 30, 2008

    I really, really like this blog entry, mom. I agree with you wholly about the potential for addiction to life drama as well as that it can (sometimes) serve to propel growth and insight. I am not sure exactly what I think about whether it is actually necessary for growth, but I think you’re right on when you said that the faster we notice what we’re doing and can step out of it, the less we’ll suffer.

    I think what all of this points to is what Scott was talking about….how personal drama tends to reinforce a socially constructed personality and an inherently limited sense of self. We often feel at both an emotional and intellectual level that we have to preserve and enhance our identity, our sense of self. In terms of getting along day to day in the world, sure, that is true to some degree. But when we become too closely identified with the role of the character/personality that we project, we become slave to it and we invariably suffer as a result. The dramas of our lives are the stories we tell ourselves about who we are and how things should be because of who we are. We derive meaning from them. I do believe, however, that these stories are only part of The “Story” I can’t tell you that I know exactly what that is in words, but I know that it has something to do with the process of discovering through experience (not through being told) who we Really Are and why we’re here. The funny thing is that at that level, it’s no longer even “personal.”

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