The World as a Canvas

Henry David Thoreau wrote that “this world is but a canvas to our imaginations.” Truly, the possibilities are endless; existence offers a full palette of color, every hue available.

Sometimes, I forget that, especially on days when I am immersed in ongoing political resistance. I have a tendency to live my life in separate scenes, and when I do, I don’t use all the colors of my day.

If I leave my Zen at home or here in a post, I am not taking advantage of the complete canvas available to me, as if the only color on my palette is activism.

My entire life is a canvas, chopped into scenes–seemingly–but there is a continuity to the practice that is my life, even when it’s not readily apparent.

So often I feel separate from my own scenes but that is the oneness of existence.

Myriad experiences—the infinite field of possibilities—ever await. My canvas—my life—will only be complete when I color my last scene.

So, if I don’t bring a full palette—the colors of each day—the scene lacks luster. It is easy to be strident–the color of self–when I am, its many hues dominate the scene.

Admittedly, I live to tweet an original Zen koan. That alone keeps me open to every color on my palette.

If I meet the world as a blank canvas and not with the idea of setting the scene as I would like it to look, then I am restrained only by imagination, and that means access to a full palette.

Who knows what or who is affected–maybe even changed–because of the colors I choose. It is a sobering responsibility to know endless possibilities.

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.

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