involutionary path and evolutionary path

This hit me smack dead between the eyes this morning.  It’s a passage from a book by a Russian guy named Gurdjieff, who basically dedicated his life to answering the question: “What is the sense and significance of life on earth and human life in particular?”  He developed a school of thought called The Fourth Way, but I won’t go into that just yet.  The passage in question that caught my eye was this – and I’m paraphrasing here – life is like a river that forks into two branches.  There is the involutionary branch and there is the evolutionary branch.  People who take the involutionary branch essentially just spend their whole life meeting the basic requirements of nature.  In polite speak they are like cattle and all of their energy is focused on eating, breeding, raising their young and being a good member of the herd.  People who take the evolutionary branch embrace life.  They are never satisfied with the status quo.  They are always pushing the boundaries. Always looking for opportunities to grow.  These people, according Gurdjieff, will have something extra in life that other people will never have.

Now the thing is I think there is no end to the amount of people who talk about personal growth, who talk about not living life in the comfort zone.  I’ll hold my hand up and say that I  too have been guilty of loitering in the comfort zone, which is why this passage probably struck such a cord with me this morning.  Although I am a cautious man, I have never been known as someone who doesn’t like pushing the edge, but lately, I have been sitting back in the comfort zone with my feet up, six pack in hand, and the beer belly to show for it.  But they say it only takes the right passage at the right time to change the course of your life.

Now where did I put my sword?

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