The Surprising Benefits Of Staring At The Sun

The Surprising Benefits Of Staring At The Sun

Cranes from dollar bills. Flowers from straw wrappers. Give my daughter something to fold and she probably will. It’s quite a joy watching her create something beautiful from something ordinary.

My origami skills, I’m afraid, leave a great deal to be desired. Although I do feel like I’ve been the one who has been folded.

Life has a way of doing that to us, it’s own version of origami, often folding us without us even being aware we’re being folded. Folded by the critical comments, unhealthy actions, and toxic opinions of others, especially in the formative years of our own self identity. Such folding impacts our experience and expectations, time often turning those folds into deep creases, continuously pressed even deeper into our psyche, reinforcing who it is we tell ourselves we are.

I’ve been folded and contorted into neither a crane nor a flower. I am just me, my final shape yet to be clearly defined. But folding is always a part of our evolution.

My journey into better understanding life and, in particular, my life has been a meandering maze of diving more deeply into me. Yes, I’ve been folded and molded and shaped into who I am today. But is who I am today who I was actually created to be? Like, are the labels and traditions and limitations I’ve accepted as true not actually the truth inherent with my creation?

Questioning something as significant as your identity involves a process of self awareness and examination. Sort of origami in Continue reading “The Surprising Benefits Of Staring At The Sun”

Waiting For The Beautiful To Become Beautiful

Waiting For The Beautiful To Become Beautiful

“They’re gonna be so beautiful when they bloom!”

This was overheard at a local nature preserve known, in part, for their large daffodil field, home to thousands of bulbs getting ready to share their gift. Visiting the field has become an annual tradition for a great many.

You could feel the anticipation in their voices as the daffodils were just days away from fully blooming and offering their vibrant color to the world. A few thoughts came to me in that moment:

Weren’t the daffodils already beautiful? Right now? As they already are? Like, at what point does something – or someone – become beautiful?

Ours is a results-oriented culture with a track record of celebrating successful outcomes. We usually don’t get too excited about the process. What we accept as beauty is greatly influenced by expectations and contingencies and once those conditions are satisfied we then feel free to affix the “beautiful” label. The daffodils, so close to fully blooming, apparently had not met their conditions for being beautiful just yet.

From a human standpoint, can we only see others and ourselves as beautiful when they/we are done growing? Can we find beauty in our incompleteness, in our unfolding, just as much as we do when we have finally blossomed and become?

For many we don’t allow our unfinished self to be beautiful. We “rationalize” that the process can’t be beautiful, only the result. As if beautiful is some sort of destination. But as humans we are never done blossoming, never done growing, are we? Because as humans, our unlimited potential for growth and expansion in an equally unlimited and expansive universe will never allow us to ever be complete, or done, or fully expressed. If we are waiting for the finality of our expansion before we can acknowledge our own beauty we will be waiting an entire lifetime before we do so.

And that would be such a shame.

Because beautiful is something we already are.

Exactly where we are, right now.

In our infinite incompleteness.

In our never-ending unfolding.

It’s a great day to be you!

God’s Night Club And The Velvet Rope of Doubt

Perhaps this has happened to you?

It’s Saturday night and you’re standing in the long line outside the hottest night club in town. There’s the muscle-bound bouncer, dressed in his crisp-yet-slightly-too-small tuxedo, clipboard in his hand. On the clipboard is the guest list with the names of the “important” people, the chosen few who will be escorted directly into the club upon their arrival.

The not-so-important people? They remain queued up in a corral of velvet ropes, anxiously hopeful the man with the muscles and the clipboard will somehow lower the velvet rope and allow them entry as well.

Heck of a way to spend a night.

Hell of a way to spend a life.

Many of us have places we’d like to go in life. Things we’d like to do. Things we’d like to become. But somehow we’re not moving forward. It’s as if Continue reading “God’s Night Club And The Velvet Rope of Doubt”