As a child I loved mysteries.  I loved them in books including devouring every Agatha Christie I could get my hands and I loved them in real life.  I was always wondering what was beyond the next bend in the road, what the story was about why specific things, places, organizations existed.  My parents called it adventuring when I would go off trying to figure out the next thing or see what was just beyond the horizon.  And I thought I had experienced all the different ways in which a mystery could exist until I ran across the mystery of the Ideal vs. the Real.

Now, the mystery doesn’t lie in the fact that the two things can be different.  That’s something most of us figure out before we’re even teens at this point.  No, the mystery, at least for me, showed up when the Ideal and the Real seemed pretty similar and yet ended up not being the same at all.   One of the funny examples that came to mind recently was my love of the book “Dune.”  My Mom had a complete set of the Dune series along with a nice collection of other classic sci-fi books.  At some point I just knew that I would read them and understand them and love them just like my Mom.  In high school I got into an AP English class and was able to read Dune for credit and I did enjoy it and have since collected my own set of the series.  Years later I mentioned this to Mom with a smile, wanting to share our love of the books.  She looked at me with a frown and told me that she had never liked them, but they had been a gift and so she felt she had to keep them around in case the person came to visit.  ??????  It still makes me laugh.  Ah Reality.

The Ideal and the Real can look very similar. Yes, the Real contains more components, takes time, is less heroic, clean, easy, and doesn’t include people who have dissenting opinions or who mean well but derail things.  Basically, Ideals have much less reality to them and stuff like that.  None of that is mysterious although its very much something you learn on the job.  🙂  No, the mystery comes in when the Ideal you set as the goal ends up not being what you thought it was at all.  Like hard work not actually being a guarantee of success even though that’s what you’ve been told since you were born.  Or another that says all work has to be hard and that makes it meaningful.  Or that work is a four letter word – something you have to suffer and survive in order to do the things you want to do or are meant to do.

Believe it or not, those things aren’t so.  But if not, then what is?  Ah, there’s the mystery to be uncovered.  Ze Frank talks about his experience in discovering this mystery and how he’s been collecting clues along the way.  He even includes a couple of PSA’s along the way.  🙂  Hard Work by Ze Frank