Life Lessons from the Number 643

“…A united self moving forward towards fulfilling our own unique divine promise…”

There were many things I learned in school that at the time made no practical sense to me. You know, the “am I ever going to use this in real life?” question. Several decades later I can confirm that for the most part time has not made what I considered then to be impractical anymore practical.

As a dad with school-aged kids I actively get involved in their studies. I like to be aware of what they’re working on. I like to be there to help out if they get a little stuck. Dad 101…here for the kids. A more secretive motivation is to see if ol’ dad still remembers the stuff, especially when it comes to math. My math skills back in the day weren’t that good to begin with, and the newer methods of solving math problems makes me wonder if I’d be able to pass the same exams that I expect my kids to pass themselves.

Recently the lesson was about prime numbers. I’ve never bothered to compile a list of my Top 10 Most Impractical School Lessons, but prime numbers would be pretty high on my list. To this day I still don’t understand the need to differentiate between prime and non-prime numbers. I must admit, though, that my comprehension of prime numbers did help me to answer a question watching Jeopardy! once, but I don’t think the goal of school curriculum is to prepare students to maximize their earnings on TV game shows.

DEFINING CHARACTERISTIC To refresh the memory, prime numbers are numbers that are only divisible by themselves or the number one. The numbers one, three, five, seven, eleven, thirteen, seventeen, nineteen, twenty three, thirty one are all examples of prime numbers. As is the number 643.

While no one ever taught me this in school, I have learned that we all share the same defining characteristic of prime numbers. What defines a prime number is it’s limited divisibility, divisible only by itself and the number one. We also possess a limited divisibility.

We are the only ones who can divide ourselves against ourselves.

CLOSER TO WHOLE I have to admit that in my own personal search for understanding and clarity in life, I’ve never contemplated my own divisibility. But a journey towards wholeness is strengthened when divisibility enters the conversation. Understanding what divides us brings us closer to understanding what it is that makes us whole. Perhaps this introspective pondering raises the possibility that maybe we have been the ones who have been getting in our own way on the road to peace and happiness.

Divisibility is about separation. Partitioning. Opposing factions. The Anti-Wholeness.

While we may never call it by it’s name, divisibility is something that impacts us every day. Divisibility’s weapons of choice are the thoughts that we can allow to divide us against ourselves, the negative thoughts that we can allow to take root within us and undermine our own sense of self…the very core of who we really are and the very foundation of all that we are capable of becoming.

THIS IS NOT THE TIME Self divisibility is usually a very subtle process and can come from several sources. Sometimes it comes from negative comments and opinions, especially from those whom we respect, love and admire which can lead us to begin recoloring the images we hold of ourselves. We live in a world full of people eager to remind us of what they feel are our shortcomings. The negative residue of their words can distort our vision of who we feel we really are.

Life events can also reshape how we assess our value and worth. Unforeseen events such as a job loss and the now-common ever-prolonged job search can thrust even the strongest of us into conversations with ourselves about ourselves. These conversations usually divide us against ourselves and fuel an internal struggle where we can begin to question our own worth, talents, and value. This is not the time to be divided against ourselves.

EMBRACE OR REPLACE The good news is those voices, some tainted with negativity, anger, hatred, or doubt have no power to weaken us. Nor do the life events that lie outside of our control have the power to break us.

Unless we let them.

We are the only ones that can divide us against ourselves.

It is important to recognize and respect those thoughts, opinions and life events that would serve to see us separated from our real selves. But the next step is deciding what to do with them. We can embrace them or replace them. It’s up to us.

We are the only ones that can divide us against ourselves.

STRONGER & WISER Our authentic self is a united self. A united self moving forward towards fulfilling our own unique divine promise. The road that will take us from where we are to where we need to be is full of twists and turns, at times poorly marked and often dimly illuminated. We are challenged every step of the way. But the greater challenge is how we decide to face these challenges.

We can succumb to the voices that divide and weaken us, that make us doubt who it is we really are. Or we can be empowered by the voice that reminds us that our whole and authentic self is stronger and wiser than the thoughts that would serve to destroy us.

Who do you listen to?

It’s our choice. But the quality of that choice is determined by how it is we actually view ourselves.

SHIMMER Negativity often grabs the headlines in our minds. Negativity always screams at the top of her lungs. But her volume is no match for even a whisper of the truthful divinity swirling within us all. Sometimes we may not be able to silence the voices that work against us, but we don’t have to listen to them, either.

Living Half Full is about realigning the vision you hold of yourself with your own truthful divinity, the person you’ve always been. Life’s cumulative effect can fog the mirror, can prevent us from clearly seeing the magnificence that always has and always will reside within us. As we wipe away the fog, the strength, wisdom, and beauty we possess will once again shimmer in our own reflection, reminding us that we already contain all that we need to navigate the challenges that shape our world today.

Perhaps the lessons learned about prime numbers have proven to be far more valuable than I ever expected them to become…

Thanks, 643.

It’s a great day to be you.

2 thoughts on “Life Lessons from the Number 643

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