Like two thirds of America, I have been experimenting with sourdough. I have found this to be a great exercise in observation and patience. The lack of yeast meant that I needed to start with just water and flour, creating a little ball of tasteless dough, that sat in my shelf for a few days collecting wild yeast from the air. It is through this process that I have learned that my mind and my dreams are like sourdough.
Hear me out.
I walk around absorbing ideas and generating thoughts much like my lump of dough absorbs the little gas producing microbes that will eventually make it rise. These ideas and the thoughts they produce start to expend and grow. Some of what comes up is superfluous and is split off and thrown away. The really good stuff gets shared with others so that they can grow their own ideas and thoughts. It allows them to create their own dreams.
However, if you keep everything to yourself (dreams and sourdough) and don’t ever off load them, they will grow too big to be contained and things will explode out. I’m still scraping sourdough off my ceiling; sometimes I feel like I need to be scraped off the ceiling.
Both dreams and sourdough benefit from having the proper environment, the right stimulation; they need patience. Neither one can be rushed or the results will inevitably fall flat and disappoint.
They require appropriate inputs; they need to be cultivated and coaxed to maturity. They need to be able to evolve and change; they will take on their own flavor and nature depending on the circumstances of their creation.
Eventually with time, they become strong and productive enough to stand on their own and produce as one hopes they would. Then comes the true beauty of the process. Shaping them and developing them into something more than half baked, something that will sustain you.