Distractions of the Doctor

You might have noticed that I’ve changed the look of the site. Early on in the day, I had to decide between changing to to a Drupal installation or upgrading my old WordPress installation. I decided on the former, but after some unsuccessful attempts at exporting the data, decided to settle on the latest WordPress installation instead.

But still, I’m not quite satisfied, and am probably going to try my hand at creating my own program from scratch, which will give me a lot more flexibility and allow me to get back up to speed with PHP5 and MySQL. But these things are still filed away as “maybe/someday”. A part of me still wants to use Drupal.

Coincidentally, I had actually read a piece of Zen writing this morning that appeared to suggest an answer to my problem on deciding upon whether to use Drupal, WordPress, or coming up with a whole system of my own. It seemed to suggest that I should just do what I do best. I guess the gist of it was: what is it that I can do that will offer the largest payoff?

I’m still thinking about it.

A well-known doctor in the twentieth century was a good amateur potter, and sometimes had parties of his patients at which he showed them his work. Once he invited a Zen master whom he knew slightly. The master arrived as a small bowl as being passed round, and they waited for his opinion. He looked round solemnly and said:

‘If any of you are ill in the future, I advise you not to call in this man. Because he must be a terrible doctor!’

There was dead silence. Then one old man asked: ‘But why, master?’

‘His heart’s not in his medicine, that’s why. Look at this bowl. Oh, it’s well enough, no doubt, but not up to professional standards, so even as a bowl it doesn’t really stand. And this man — he collects patients simply so that he can show them his pots!’

The doctor took it to heart and abandoned the artist’s vanity which had taken such a deep hold and was impairing his study of medicine.

This story motivated me to question my life’s motives. My life has been, thus far, mostly a generality. I haven’t really ever focused on any area of my life. Though I believe that this has aided me tremendously while I was younger, allowing me to experience plenty of possibilities as I sought my true calling, I had better start making concrete decisions, carving out an identity and destiny for myself.

I want to have something that I will be willing to die for, without which I have nothing to live for, either.

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