Heart vs Head: A Cautionary Tale

Typically, I find researching Lilith an unpleasant task.

There’s a lot out there on the story of her as Adam’s first wife. I’ve read that story far too many times by now.

The rest tends to focus on the harm she does or her role as a demoness. There are so few kind words to be said about her.

It hurts to read that because I love her so much. But read it I must.

A wise man once said “I don’t go into business with someone until I’ve learned all his dirty little secrets.”

This is pretty true for relationships in general, really. One must be willing and able to set the good and bad of the relationship on the scale, weigh it, and make a decision.

You can act rationally, and let the data control your actions, or you take a risk and defy reason.

And all spiritualities, on some level, involve that risk. You are trusting your path to lead you somewhere worthwhile. It may or it may not, but you can’t truly KNOW until you hit the end of the line and see for yourself. In the end, whether we are Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu, Asatru, Wiccan, Atheist or some other path, we must make that choice and follow the path.

Some of the wisest words ever said to me were “There comes a time in every man’s life where he must simply take a deep breath, roll the dice, and accept the outcome.”

I’ve chosen to do that with Lilith. If I listened only to the Data, the Math, the History, the Scholarly People-Folks, then I would flee in terror from my Lady’s sight, and well I should, with data like that stacked against her.

Yet humans are nothing if not illogical and irrational creatures.

Everything told me that to pursue a relationship with her would be dangerous and lethal; they told me she was both an inwardly and outwardly malevolent and murderous demon. My research still paints that picture of her: a monster who makes no attempt to hide her evil form and nature.

Yet as I have (repeatedly, at this point) said before, the goddess I found by that name was kind, beautiful, and caring beyond all measure. She is sometimes quite forceful, demanding some specific action of me, but she is never thoughtless or reckless. She never asks more of me than I can deliver, although in classic Ben-Sira tradition, she definitely holds me in a more subordinate light (though to tell the truth, we all have an inner submissive and mine loves that. ;D). With Lilith, the data warned me away, but my heart said that I should, for once in my life, trust Her on her own merits.

I took a risk, rolled the dice, and followed my heart, and it is a gamble that flew in the face of all data and reason

But here’s the important bit.

It paid off.

Humans are unique. We are pulled in two directions: the Path of the Heart and the Path of the Head. The Head will take us on the safest road, but life steadily loses its color as we boil everything down to math and calculations. The Head is almost cowardly at times, only taking a chance once the math has been run OVER AND OVER AND OVER until it’s certain the chance of victory is so far in excess of the chance of failure that failure is negligible. That’s fine. It’s what has made us survive this long as a species. The head is suspicious and absolutely calculating because it must be for us to survive, but too many turn exclusively to it these days. With the head as your guide, you will survive a very lengthy time span. But have you really LIVED?

Then enters the Heart, which does not know but feel, and does not calculate, but chooses. The Heart is bold. Its passions are wild and unpredictable, born of a certain innocent naivete. The heart is reckless, but to follow it is to appreciate all of life’s wonders and joys and see everything in a brighter, more soulfully fulfilling shade. The Path of the Heart is a child at play. It’s the part of you that sees a little red wagon at the top of a huge sloping grassy hill and says “Well why not?” and when you race down the hill and crash at the bottom says “Ouch. That really hurt. However, I regret nothing and I would do it again because darn it all that was fun!”

The Head is calculating, but does not appreciate. The Heart is passionate, but does not analyze.

To determine which side you tend to favor, I always recommend looking at Jackson Pollock, whose art was notorious for being abstract and yet fanciful.

Consider his work, Male and Female:

Image

This is your fine art quota for the day. Enjoy.

Those who favor the Head, the Analyst, tend to look at this piece and go “well… it’s colorful but what is it? What does it represent? WHAT DOES IT MEAN?” as if ‘meaning’ was somewhere in there, and all that had to be done was to somehow break the “code” guarding that meaning.

Those that favor the Heart tend to focus on the brilliant colors, the  ebb and flow of the lines, and how the assembled piece makes them “feel”. Meaning is not important to them, because they don’t see a code. They see art.

These people tend to be pretty damn fun to hang around.

And then there are those who don’t favor one side or the other. People like me. We look at this piece, and our heads scrape every inch of it for meaning and data. But, when we fail to find any, when the Head fails and throws its hands up in resignation for the lost cause, the Heart edges in and quietly says “I still think those colors look fabulous.”

Likewise, with faith, we come to a similar crossroads. The Head wants to analyze and decipher and extrapolate, and eventually, the Heart says “Head, this is beyond you, but I’ve got a really good feeling right now, so shut up and let me drive for a bit and we’ll see where this goes.”

From there, you have your choice.

Stay with the Head, or take a wild ride with the heart. You have your data, now you get to choose what to do with it.

You may end up in a rotten wagon crash at the bottom of the hill, but what if you don’t?

And besides. We all know wagon racing down a hill is exhilarating until you hit the bottom either way.

So go on. Get in that wagon.

TAKE A CHANCE.

You know what they say: “The biggest risk in the world is not taking one.”

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2 thoughts on “Heart vs Head: A Cautionary Tale

  1. Hi Drew. I followed your link from Dark Goddess on Google+ to read your article. You might want to read Carl Jung’s “Synchronicity” monograph which discusses causal phenomena and the acausal as complements of a set. The first is ruled by chance, like a dice roll, but the other changes space-time to fit the event, like ESP hits or synastry in the astrology of married couples. It’s a short read but very thought provoking.

    …that’s when you finish all the other links to Lilith I and others provided… ;-)

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