You know the old round: "Row, row, row your boat, gently down the stream; merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a dream!" It is high time we considered the metaphysics of that classic ditty.
Of greatest importance is knowing whose boat you are rowing. As you travel the river of life, the boat used is yours. You cannot live another person's life; you can only live yours. Stay in your own boat.
How are you to propel your own personal water craft? The song says "gently." Row so gently as to become one with the stream. You do not need to make a big splash in life. Just being born into this particular physical existence is splash enough.
What direction does the song say you are gently going? You are going with the flow by going down the stream. With the flow is the only way you can go if you are rowing gently. If fighting the current instead by heading upstream, there can be nothing gentle about your rowing. You will need to row furiously just so as not to lose ground. Life cannot be dream-like that way, unless it be a nightmare, nor could it be very merry.
Do especially notice that the song sings the word "merrily" four times and the word "row" three times. This means that life should be more play than work. If such is not the case for you, consider the nature of your water craft. A row boat is a fine vessel for cruising the life stream; however, your back is toward the bow. You are forever going backwards, in a row boat. Oh, a row boat is fine conveyance for observing where you have been, but you can barely see where you are going. If rowing your boat seems to be a rather backwards thing to do, then upgrade to a canoe, face forward, and dig in with your paddle. Your navigation will be more precise and your speed forward will be increased. All the more swiftly will you arrive in the wide and mellow valley of success which your life stream has carved.
Do not confuse yourself with the river, however. You are in the life stream but you are not the life stream. In the maturity of your journey, do not start singing a different tune, such as "Old Man River." Even so, what does the river do at that point? The song says it "just keeps rolling along." Man or woman, the river you are not, nor are you the boat. You are the captain of the boat. You are soul, the boat is your body, the oar or paddle is your ego.
Having all that straight in your unique consciousness, you can sail onward with poise and grace. Furthermore, with Unity principles on board, you will find that, although any river still holds its snags, those snags cannot hold you as hang ups, because at that point in your maturity, so much water has gone under the bridge that you are more than sailor; you are sage. Sail on with the richness of your years, free and unlimited,
all the while giving that wealth to the broad and fertile valley which you have carved.
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