Category Archives: Books

The Antidote

 

“Failure is everywhere. It’s just that most of the time we would rather avoid confronting that fact…

Our efforts not to think about failure leave us with a severely distorted understanding of what it takes to be successful. An openness to the emotional experience of failure can be a stepping-stone to a much richer kind of happiness than can be achieved by focusing only on success.”

The phrase “failure is the mother of success” didn’t come from our predecessors for nothing – they knew the meaning and value of failure, something our society seems to be rediscovering – thankfully.

The Little Things That Add Up

“Movies are made out of darkness as well as light; it is the surpassingly brief intervals of darkness between each luminous still image that make it possible to assemble the many images into one moving picture. Without that darkness, there would only be a blur. If you could add up all the darkness, you would find the audience in the theatre gazing together in a deep imaginative night. It is the terra Incognita of film, the dark continent on every map. In a similar way, a runner’s every step is a leap, so that for a moment he or she is entirely off the ground. For these brief instants, shadows no longer spill out from their feet… These tiny fragments of levitation add up to something considerable; by their own power they hover above the earth for many minutes…

We fly; we dream in darkness; we devour heaven in notes too small to be measured.”

-“A Field Guide To Getting Lost”

But we could use the power of mindfulness to pick out all the terra Incognita in our being. Then we might be able to get a taste of that elusive heaven. For there is infinity within a moment, and all we have is each moment.

Creating The Past

“It is true that the old have no opportunities, no possibilities in the future. But they have more than that. Instead of possibilities in the future, they have realities in the past – the potentialities they have actualized, the meanings they have fulfilled, the values they have realized – and nothing and nobody can ever remove these assets from the past.”

– Man’s Search for Meaning

Reading this, I hope to see my impending leave from this place and life in a new light.

Yes, I will probably not experience life as a student again. I may not ever have as much time with and by myself. I might not have as much time to reflect and think and ponder in the rush of work and commitments and social obligations.

But, all those hours I have invested doing these in the past years – would have contributed to my being, to the person I am and will be.

And wherever I work, serve or practice – the insights and knowledge I have gained will make their presence felt. I can tap on them, their accumulated presence in my mind and life, to be the best I can be in every moment I have. They have not been wasted, because they have Been.

“Instead of possibilities in the future, they have realities in the past – the potentialities they have actualized, the meanings they have fulfilled, the values they have realized – and nothing and nobody can ever remove these assets from the past.”