Posts Tagged ‘possibility’

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Philosophy Tuesday

May 22, 2018

You absolutely cannot un-saw a tree. 

“To share something is to risk losing it, especially in a world where sharing occurs at tremendous scale and where everyone seems to want to be noticed, even if only for cutting down a beloved tree. If you’d never photographed the Broccoli Tree, it might still be there for you to see on your commute every day. It might still provide shade to the real people who live with you on the southern bank of that lake. But, then again, the far away people who loved your pictures of the Broccoli Tree were real, too. They took shelter under its canopy as well, even if only virtually. And, the truth is, if we hoard and hide what we love, we can still lose it. Only then, we’re alone in the loss. You can’t un-saw a tree, but you can’t un-see one either. The Broccoli Tree is gone, but it’s beauty survives.”

John Green

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Wonder Wednesday

May 16, 2018

I shared this lovely video during the Mindfulness panel I led last weekend…

This is your world

You’re the creator

Find freedom on this canvas

— Bob Ross

 

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Philosophy Tuesday

May 15, 2018

“I live a little bit on the seat of my pants, I try to be alert and available.  I try to be available for life to happen to me.

We’re in this life, and if you’re not available, the sort of ordinary time goes past and you didn’t live it.

But if you’re available, life gets huge.

You’re really living it.”

— Bill Murray on being present

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Philosophy Tuesday

May 8, 2018

Goals, resolutions, targets…

Maybe sometime, it’s better to just play a game.

Not any kind of game, though.  Not something like poker or sports or something we can wrap so much of our identity(ies) around.

But the primordial kind of game.  The kind we made up when we were kids.

Games like “The Floor is LAVA.”

Games that we totally made up, and know we made up, but we play them like they’re real.  Full out.  100%.  All the way, twisting, jumping, balancing, taking risks, giving it all we’ve got.  (And probably laughing a lot too…)

And then we either win – yay! – or not.  Floomph!  Into the lava we went.

The game is then done.  We reminisce about the game, we review what we did, we

Then, we can play the game again, make up new rules for the game, choose to play a different game altogether.

And so it goes.

Our games can be short and simple:  “Today, I will practice being grateful.”  At the end of the day, “Hmm.  How did my game go?  Did I win that game?  Yes, no?  By a little, by a lot?”  Tomorrow, we create another game.

Or the games can be great and long.  “I am playing the game to complete the first draft of my book by the end of the year.”   The year is up!  How’d the game go?

Oh, you want to play again?  Or play this related game?  Cool.  Anything you see missing that you want to add in before you play?  Cool!  Ready… set…

Games are fun.  Games get us going.*  Games can be fulfilling.  And they’re just games.  They propel us forward, and when the timer’s up, they disappear, leaving a clean field for the next one.

So…

What games do you want to play?

 

* The NaNoWriMo is another great example of this:  A game to write 50,000 words of fiction during the month of November.  It’s a game!  Play, write, and either hit 50k, nor not!  Woo!

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Philosophy Tuesday

May 1, 2018

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.

And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost.

The world will not have it.

It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions.

It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.”

Martha Graham (Emphasis Mine)

 

Everyone is passionate about something.

When we listen closely, to our deepest authentic selves, we can feel it welling up, ready to burst free in glorious self-expression.

When we listen closely, from our deepest wonder, we can hear it singing in others, ready to grace the hills in its beauty.

When we remember that life and living life is itself an art, our avenues of expression grow even more.

And with the channel open, we get to share with the world.

 

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Philosophy Tuesday

April 24, 2018

It was dinner time, and two fish lay in elegant plates on the table before us.  At this point in the trip – my first to China for some kung fu training – this was expected. Every dinner featured one, usually two, very whole and complete fish.  But there was one thing that I felt I didn’t quite have a grasp on yet.  Fortunately, I was seated next to Sifu that night.

“Sifu,” I asked, “What’s the secret to serving fish, so that you don’t get any bones?”

He paused, smiled, and said, “Don’t eat fish.”

It took me a moment, but I got it.

And like many things fish related, it went well beyond the realm of fish.

To eat fish is to get bones.  If you’ve made the choice to eat fish, to go down that route, then bones should be, if not expected at least predicted.  As the expression goes, it comes with the territory.

So too in many of our lifelong activities.  Down certain paths, especially many worthwhile paths, there are things that will come up, things we will encounter, things we need to deal with, that, while not inevitable, there is a chance (and perhaps likely) that they will arise.

To get caught up in frustration or upset or “shouldn’ts” is, in some ways, kinda weird.  We made the choice.  We said we wanted fish.  And lo, here are the bones of that fish.

It needn’t, of course, descend into fatalism or cynicism – that is as much an illusion as imagining boneless fish forever.  Possibility doesn’t live at the extremes.

Inside possibility, we swim and dance down those worthwhile paths, seeking what we desire, dealing with and putting aside the bones that arise with clarity, peace and grace.

And sometimes, in the most literal way, we serve ourselves and eat some very delicious fish.

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Philosophy Tuesday

April 17, 2018

Our deep human yearning for certainty

Our deep craving to know

Our deep need for agency

Can all lead us

To great places

And great creativity

Spawning deep musings

Wonderful art

And beautiful acts of community

But they can also lead us

Down dark paths

Of arrogance

Of righteousness

Of hatred

And of force

Ways that are most harmful

 

The desire is real

It will set us off

to travel down those paths

It is only clinging

That can lead us astray

 

Part of being human

Is learning to live with

And dance within

The spaces of uncertainty

 

For there will always be some

And that’s ok