Tag Archives: the risk to bloom

Who Are We?

“You are that” or “that you are”–Tat Tvam Asi–a Sanskrit “great saying” or pronouncement from the Hindu Upanishads. Each one of us is unique; it is our connection to one another. Together, we are whole.

Oneness never diminishes the individual but honors the unique space each of us occupies. We mirror the world for one another; looking is how we recognize ourselves. 

This is at that moment in time for our country when we are collectively looking

in the mirror and with furrowed brow asking this question, who are we?

(Senator Kamala Harris, the Women’s March on Washington, January 21, 2017).

Day's Beginning 082016

Traits we so readily recognize in others are in us, too. No matter what label we give them.

If we shift our focus to what connects us— that we hold a mirror for one another— imagine the possibilities.

We are at a moment, a global moment, when we are looking in the mirror and asking who are we and who do we want to be.

To look is fraught with risk but as William James said, “it is only by risking ourselves from one hour to another that we live at all.”

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. 

 

Why the Open Heart?

Buddhists believe the “genuine heart” (bodhichitta) resides in all beings–no matter the selfishness or unkindness. It is the possibility in each of us to awaken, to change.

mindset-0115-3The genuine heart is neither neutral nor doormat. It is fiercely hard to be compassionate. After all, it’s so easy not to be. Why meet every situation with equanimity? For that matter, why risk a broken heart?

Elizabeth Gilbert says a broken heart is a good sign; “it means we have tried for something.” We are wounded but to wound in return only increases our pain.

Nor in the healing of the heart do we harden. We repair not to repeat but to renew, fortified in our compassion. We have a better understanding of pain for we opened ourselves to it. We tried something.

Equanimity is the spirit of risk, of accepting that the bloom is on the rose for such a short time butthe-blossom-0814 what a time it is. Never to risk the bloom is never to know compassion, that sacred space where we are taught what we need to know.

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.

 

A Stone in Hand

We create tension in our lives every time we stray from the moment, splitting our attention between the reality we are living and the life we want.

We let go of who we are for who we want to be. And we want it to happen overnight, if not immediately.

As Mark Nepo says, we are trying to “feel the stone and not the ripple.”

We set our sights beyond where we are, looking down the road before we take the first step. It is not long before we stumble and maybe falter altogether.

It is easy to stay stuck in the beyond, forgoing the now.

We want the stone of certainty without riding the ripple of uncertainty. We must bring our board, the person we are, and ride the risk.

straying-mccord-0313

To ride the ripple requires focus, our attention never swerving until the stone is in hand–whatever reality that may represent.

A stone in hand is not the only reward for riding risk.

Each time we stay in the moment— meet the reality we are in—we gain understanding of yet another facet of what it is to be who we are–our authentic self–in every moment.

That we stray from the moment is not surprising.

The more crucial thing is that we return.

(Nepo)

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity in daily doses. 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. 

The Bud and the Bloom

“I can’t think of any better representation of beauty than someone who is unafraid to be herself.”

Emma Stone

I’m reminded of Elizabeth Appell who also wrote a few lines on the risk to Bud Opening 0814bloom.

and the day came

when the risk to remain tight,

in a bud,

became more painful

than the risk it took to blossom.

(Elizabeth Appell)

Yet Appell, who wrote those lines in 1979, remained silent while greeting cards, posters, and eventually the Internet attributed this “blossom” to Anaïs Nin. In 2013, Elizabeth broke her silence and risked again.

In beauty, we open ourselves to each experience as it unfolds. The bloom will not last but how magnificent the moment.

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity in daily doses. 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.