“We are circumference people, with little access to the center. We live on the boundaries of our own lives.” Richard Rohr
This is the opening line in Rohr’s book, Everything Belongs. He notes, (in a warning of sorts) that “we can remain on the circumferences of our lives for quite a long time. So long, that it starts to feel like the only ‘life’ available.” I haven’t read the book (yet), but it occurs to me that living on the boundaries makes us awfully busy, and perhaps a bit paranoid. Living on the boundary, the boundary itself becomes the only thing that separates us from the outside, and there is, then, a constant effort to protect the boundary at all costs, and a tendency toward binary thought — to see things as outside or inside, and judge them based on that. (Stop me if this starts to sound like an election strategy!) Inside becomes good. Outside becomes bad. Those who look, think, act, and talk like me are inside while those who don’t are outside.
There is, of course, difficulty in the journey to the core, away from the boundary but it occurs to me that perhaps the hardest part in the journey is coming to grips with the thought that the move is a good and necessary thing, that we no longer need or want to be “circumference people.”