Telling the difference between a gate and a wall

There are lots of metaphors related to the paths our lives can take.  There are even metaphors of metaphors.

nowheregateWe like to think that we can pretty much do whatever we want.  The reality, for most of us, is that our choices are limited by where we have been–where we have come from–and the many restrictions our culture places on us.  Most of the time it is difficult to tell, except in retrospect, that we have truly chosen.  If the outcome turns out “OK” we take credit.  If the outcome is less desirable we are not quite so willing to take responsibility for what has happened.

Our “choices” more closely resembles our being driven–as opposed to our choosing.

Sometimes the road blocks are obvious—sometimes not.  They are mostly of our own making but often there are limits based on the culture we grow up in.

Freedom beyond being a “state of mind” is very difficult to pin down.

Ultimately, that is all it can ever be.

Some paths appear blocked, we know they are blocked.  We may even know they are supposed to be blocked and yet we still look for a way around or through them.

Such is the case with the gate in the above picture.

Why do we waste time–sometimes our whole lives–on paths that are obviously blocked?  Sometimes we have to look very closely to tell the difference between a gate and a wall.

While some obstacles along the way are meant to be pushed out of the way, climbed over or even ignored–sometimes we need to learn when it is more efficient to go around.

By Charles Buell, Real Estate Inspections in Seattle

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  1. Hi Charles. I always enjoy your posts. I don’t think of myself as a lazy thinker, but I’m stuck on the meaning of your last post regarding the gate. I would like to know what you are trying to say without using my imagination too much. Should I be inferencing something regarding your President’s border wall? The immigrants who have to contend with a muddied immigration policy? Help me out if you can. Cheers.

    • Charles Buell says:

      Oh, nothing too complicated, although your guesses work most likely. I was just having a little fun with this as relates to what looks like a gate (entry, passage to somewhere) and yet the handrail makes it more of a wall. I am just interested in illusions and allusions I guess. 🙂

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