Monday, November 22, 2010

Brian’s Reflection: Tuesday, November 23, 2010

To live is so startling it leaves
little time for anything else.

Emily Dickinson, poet

Read this and you will know without fail where the story in Genesis came from, about Adam and Eve being kicked out of the Garden and being condemned to work – horrors! – to keep body and soul together. It’s what is called an “etiological” story, that is, a story that has been concocted to explain some “mystery” of human life. Why must we work so hard to provide the wherewithal to live?? People have asked this question since the beginning of time.

Emily didn’t have to work to survive, as far as I know. Except perhaps for her artistic soul to survive. It recently appears that she might have suffered from a chronic illness, like epilepsy; so she could stay home ….. and write! And she did.

But in her writing, we see time and time again her passion for Life. We see her “startled-ness” at Life, at how amazing Life was. She had little time for anything else, so awing was Life.

I want to be like Emily! I want to develop even more than I have now a nature that is endlessly entranced and delighted and charmed by Life.

I’ve had my share of the drudgery of work. But I’ve been fortunate to have had a good deal of work that allowed me to experience the wonder that Life can reveal: delightful human beings and exquisite things and places and a huge amount of Beauty. And “retirement”, even with a small pension, has expanded it.

How I have been blessed! Particularly with an appreciation of Simplicity, and the ability to let go of things.

I wish it for you all. A Life that is startling.


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