Today while out for my morning dog walk, I came upon a funeral service for a city policeman.
A usually quiet park had been taken over by what looked like thousands, but was probably only a few hundred, police people.
Some were on horses, the streets around the park were closed and there were police vehicles parked everywhere.
I knew it was a funeral service because I read about it and knew how the death had occurred.
I walk this walk many days a week and have done so for many years. This park is beautiful, peaceful, has fountains, and the backdrop is a beautiful Catholic Basilica.
Today the juxtaposition of all the activity, the reason it was happening, all the events going on in the city and the world, the beautiful fall morning, and people walking around taking notice or not in this usually quiet corner of a city park had me wondering.
I remember one time I was in Thailand and I came across a white Buddhist temple that was hundreds of years old and right by the front entrance was a new bright red Coke machine.
The juxtaposition of the old and the new was jolting.
Life is constantly changing. People die and the world keeps spinning. Sometimes thats hard to wrap my head around.
And as I walked by the gathering for the viewing I thought about life and how fleeting it can be. I noticed the respect fellow police officers were showing for their fallen colleague.
I felt the silly juxtaposition of me and my dog walking by in my red logo sweatshirt supporting our baseball team trying to make it to the world series against the energy of sadness in the air. How do we grieve death and feel joy and hope at the same time? Joy over baseball none the less? How do we decide what is more important to give those emotions to? How do we manage the juxtaposition of the opposites humans feel as life goes on and these emotional events keep happening?
I guess we just keep walking and feeling the feels. Over time I've learned that feelings ebb and flow. They don't stay forever. The bad ones and the good ones. Letting the emotions happen, noticing them and the juxtaposition of what I am feeling to what I am experiencing outside helps. And if I change what is happening on the outside, I can often shift what is happening inside. And vice versa.
So I walked home and went about my day, paying attention to the juxtapositions.