Saturday, December 26, 2015

The Benefits of Discomfort

“Direct experience is out best teacher, but it is exactly what we are most bent on obliterating, because it is often so painful. We grow more comfortable at the price of knowing the world and therefore ourselves."    Joe Kane, Running the Amazon. 

We are not meant to live our lives indoors, not meant to breathe caged and recirculated air or always be warm and comfortable. Discomfort builds callus and muscle and bone. It breeds ingenuity and community: a melding of talent and time. The Greek word for comfort is paregoria—the root for the word Paregoric—an opioid once given to children to put them to sleep. Comfort being a kind of drug that dulls the senses and leads us into a stupor. Living outside for 31 days reminded me of this. Being home, in front of the fire and feeling like I need a nap reminds me of it too.

Naseem Rakha -  December 26, 2015


  1. beautifully said and heart leaps to it !

  2. River trips over the last 40 years-plus have generally been comfortable, but comfort is not guaranteed! We've had snow, rain, general cold, heat, and sunburn...but that stuff always ends. Usually, the sun shines!