Something I am trying to practice: when the inner critic voice sets about shutting me down, preventing me from pursuing a creative activity because, really why bother, I suck-- I actively shift the focus of that critic to take a look around and focus on beauty.
I think I mentioned to you that I've been reading Beauty by John O'Donahue and it is grounding me and opening me in wonderful ways. (I had ordered it in through the inter-library loan program on a whim-- and think I am going to have to purchase a copy of my very own). In one passage, he talks about the importance of this critical voice as it serves to keep us clear of illusions (i.e. difference between the true spirit world and our silly human crap) but that we have to be careful as it can be deadly when turned on the self.
Oh yes, we all know just how deadly.
And so-- off I go into the world, trying to put into practice ideas that I get intellectually, but prove to be much gnarly when you want to actually let go of old beliefs and live by new ones.
As life would have it, there is an exciting project underway at the farm right now: they are putting in a new foundation under the sugar shack which requires that they jack the 100+ year old building up into the air.
Yeah-- the metaphor is not lost on me.
And you know what else? It makes me see the building itself with fresh eyes. For instance, in all the dozens of times you walked past this hand-wrought beauty, did you ever notice the crafted bough detail over the front door?
Yeah, me neither.
Oh, the things we miss because we are letting our heads fill with the busy whirring of our incessant thoughts.
So that's where I am at-- walking a road without knowing where it leads, but trusting I'm headed where I am supposed to be and trying to enjoy the journey by focusing on all the beauty around me and not freaking out at the fact that I cannot see what lies ahead.