Monday, January 30, 2006

In Defense of Schedules

I've found myself over the years (and by years, I mean the past 4) oscillating between using schedules and not using them. Take for example my Freshman year: that was the first year I ever encountered "self-help" texts, and I became fascinated with the idea of time management. I attempted, futilly, to account for every second of my day, to manage life to the microscale. That, admittedly, became tiring and fell to the wayside.

Sophomore year, no real scheduling of interest. I continued with a more of a "go with the flow" sort of idea, just doing things as they came up. Junior year, with my first real introduction to "mysticism" and more spiritual elements, I decided that schedules (as well as goals, plans, etc.) must be inherently evil. They required me to forget the "now" in favor of the "future." And since the future is an illusion and the now is all there is, such scheduling must be evil.

Comes Senior year. I've realized, as you could probably guess through other posts, that such an approach, such a radical abandon of scheduling, goals, etc., does not have a positive affect. Unless you consider a feeling of intense apathy and unease to be positive. So, I've come to the conclusion that yes, maybe schedules do have their place. At least, if they can get me out of this quagmire of uselessness that I've fallen into.

I'm not proposing scheduling in the way I first encountered it, some sort of super map that counts my seconds off for me and almost runs my life. Rather, I'm advocating a more fluid, dynamic schedule. I'm going for planned periods each day, at a certain time, to do something. And if something important -- truly important, not a lame ass excuse important -- should come up, I can ignore the schedule. The schedule is there to serve me, not the other way around.

On a slight non sequitur, looking at the world, I find that most "spiritual" people follow this path anyway. You won't find any monastery, Buddhist, Christian, or otherwise, where the monks don't rise with the sun, meditate at certain times, and go to bed with the sunset. Even these most spiritual of men follow a "schedule" of sorts.

So there I have it. This is yet another example of settling the paradox of the relative vs. the absolute and the fact that they're not-two. I really should write about this idea sometime, since I base a great number of decisions on it. You can find the jist of the idea in The Two Truths Doctrine or from a really ancient blog post of mine. Those should give you some idea of what I'm talking about until I write something more substantial.

Well, I'm off to schedulize. Or maybe go to bed. Yeah, that second one.


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