In Praise of Mud
Mud gets a bum rap.
Your name is mud. Don’t muddy the waters. That’s clear as mud. It seems the only bone it gets thrown is mud pie, a dessert of coffee ice cream, crushed wafers, and a divine volume of fudge sauce.
Today, I rise in praise of mud.
Mud takes many forms, but its forte is chaos, disorder, discomfort. When you boil it down (if you can do that with mud), it seems to be uncertainty and not knowing.
But what are those if not the necessary precursors to clarity? There can be no insight without befuddlement first.
So. A wild idea.
What if we treated mud as a teacher? Not one we asked for. But one whose presence means we are moving towards new knowing.
(Remember, too: Four-year-olds delight in mud. We might not return to that, but we can reach towards it.)
So. When we next find ourselves in the thickest chaos, disorder, discomfort, we could try something:
I am not in mud, we could say. I’ve been served mud pie I didn’t order. And when I am through with it, I will be a more full human than I was before.
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