What an extraordinary thing the mind is. While waiting at the airport between flights I am surrounded by things that celebrate the mind. Sadly, the incomplete Sudoku in the Qantas magazine might be less than a celebration of my mind although it needs to be said that I did bypass the easy and the medium challenge for the hardest.
My travelling companions, whose names I will never know but whose germs I have now shared for a number of hours, exit with books tucked under their arms. Books, a testimony to the educated mind. As I exit, my mind offers a sharp perspective. Don’t you just love the intimacy of plane travel, stuck in a seat that is too small, next to a person who is too large, who talks too much, coughs all over you and then falls asleep on your shoulder. Of course, when they wake up, they’re apologetic but step on your foot as they try to get to the onboard bathroom for the third time. They clearly didn’t have a mother who would say “go before we board”. But this was meant to be a celebration of the mind, not a whinge about plane travel so I will attempt to bring my mind under control.
Everywhere I look the brain is processing. In the airport lounge there’s the rolling advertising board, currency exchange information and coffee signs offering to stimulate minds. Taking all this in, I can still make a decision to sidestep the oncoming commuters, and look at the departures board for analysis. Who said a man can’t do two things at the one time? Global crises are being resolved through parental text messages, while matters of the teenage heart are being discussed. Amidst all this action and the announcement that my flight is boarding at gate 23, my brilliant mind is choosing my footie tips for the weekend while the woman next to me picks up the Financial Review. To save that woman any embarrassment my mind told me to pick one up as well. She will never know I will never read it. Isn’t the mind brilliant!
With mobile hidden in the lifted pages of the Fin Review, winning NRL picks made, my mind returns to the typing of this article, sending signals to the specific four of ten fingers that I use for typing. The mind of course is more willing but the fingers are weak. A bit like my footie tips where my mind is perfect but the teams I choose are weak.
What is the point of this article your mind might be asking? This article is my little moment of applause for the mind. What an extraordinary job God has done in creating the mind that meets the plethora of images and challenges we confront every day. From the engineering of an aircraft that flies to the technology we carry in our pockets, the mind is extraordinary.
Its weakness, however, is the distance that it sometimes keeps from the heart and the mouth. As my plane lands and the hostess speaks, I have to wonder, “Is there a virus in the mind that makes a person release their belt and get up before the seatbelt light goes off?” This is followed by push and shove at the expense of another. What an embarrassment for the virus affected mind to discover that you have to get onto a bus that won’t leave until we have all disembarked. My observant mind asks the question as to what is the matter with the person who ignores the guy in the wheel chair, drops their rubbish on the floor for someone else to clean up and neglects to say thank you when the hostess hands them their coat. As they grow in frustration waiting for others to get on the bus, their mouth offers the tell-tale sign of just another person whose mind is a long way from their heart.
I think the mind is extraordinary and we should celebrate it. However the mind is capable of great good and great evil. The mind is not pure and we should always consider what is informing it. The Bible says, “The law of the Lord is perfect refreshing the soul. The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant giving light to the eyes.” Now there’s something to set our minds on!