Monday, November 20, 2017

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Fall Beauty

copyright: JWilson, taken on the campus of
Columbia International University

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Figure it out

"He who does not know what the world is, does not know where he is. And he who does not know for what purpose the world exists, does not know who he is, nor what the world is. But he who has failed in any one of these things could not even say for what purpose he exists himself. What then do you think of him who [avoids or] seeks the praise of those who applaud, of men who know not either where they are or who they are?"  (Marcus Aurelius, "Meditations," VIII: 52)

We become so "specialized" (for lack of a better word) in how we live and work that we give no thought to the world around us. We are so locked into being in a certain place to meet certain people at a certain time for a certain duration to accomplish a certain purpose that we have no reason to look around. We don't hunt or farm because we have no reason to--we just pick up meat and potatoes from the store. We have no reason to get in the dirt, to note the flora and fauna. The payoff? We lose sight of who we are because we don't participate in the world in which we live. 

I've worked in the same building on the same campus at the same University for more than a decade, making my way from car to office, from office to car that I never noticed the fig tree growing just yards outside my door until a few months ago. What else have I missed? How much of life has slipped by? What do I become? Nothing more than the proverbial cog in the proverbial machine--and that machine is relentless. 

Have you made little discoveries like that? 
"How long has THAT been there?" 
When you miss the world around, you miss the fruit it bears for you. 

Makes you wonder what else you've missed, doesn't it? 
Makes you wonder if you know yourself as well as you do--others, too. 
Who is in your world, anyway? 
Why do you do what you do? 

Grab your journal and figure it out. 
Record what you see and what you learn. 
Engage the world. 

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