Blog, Thoughts

Criticism and Dried Well

It needs not even a single sweat drop to criticize on things that bothered us, things that against our view or values, whilst it can be a hell of a job to fix or improve it for those who are inside the circle, the box, especially when it's related with paradigm, attitude, habit, politics, money, power, sex.

We can't be good in all things, nor can be bad in everything. Some people are very good in making critics, some others are very good in getting things done. It's quite rare that a person can have both traits with equal strength, and hence they need each other, provided that there's a healthy communication between the two.

Throwing critic to someone or to an institution is as important as giving a praise, appreciation or encouragement. It's a matter of taste, whether bitter or sweet, and both are healthy for the mind, heart and soul (mihes). But be careful with the dosage to be given; too little will not work and too much will become a deadly poison.

My personal experience, be it in professional or private life, excessive critics thrown by me maybe an indication that something is going on with my mihes (mind, heart and soul). If mihes are imagery wells, the water will be abundant when we continuously deposit old and new things into them, by readings, learning new things, meeting (new) people, doing creative things, performing worship, listening to music, going to concerts, doing social activities, etc.

When the mind well is drying up, we may have little information or few thoughts to share with others. The comments or the articles we wrote may not be that intelligent or deep enough to inspire others. It's time then to spare time to read books that we have bought but have never been opened, have lunch or coffee with friends, attend seminar or professional gatherings, or contemplate to hone our mind.

The heart well is drying up when we get bored with what we are doing, with what we are and who we are today. Life is just pale, bleak, not enough color to cheer our days up. That's probably the wake up call for us to stop going to malls, and go to see music concerts, plays, poetry readings, painting exhibitions, or visit museums. Maybe also it's time to play our "jablay" guitars or pianos and learn new songs or compositions.

The indication that the soul well is drying up is when we lost our direction in life, words of wisdom are becoming rare, more criticism rather than giving positive advice or contribution, stingy to others and indulge in ourselves too much, see life as a mere profit and loss transactions. Then it's the time to do fasting, make our stomach hungry twice a week, pray the way we want and know what we say, read and learn the holy book and other books of wisdom, meet Khidir -the wise men- and mingles with them.

As a normal person, our mihes also follow "cokro penggilingan" rule, the wheel of life. There are ups and downs. We just need to watch out for the signals, and make necessary adjustments, before the wells completely dried up and needs major treatments to fix them.

, seorang pejalan musiman dan penyuka sejarah. Penduduk Jakarta yang sedang tinggal di Cikarang Utara. Diperbarui: December 29, 2007.

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