Appreciate, accept life as intending good, and you experience being goodness. Depreciate, resent, and you experience suffering.
Being a worthwhile human means vigilance. Being a good parent follows this same requirement.
Without ongoing scrutiny of our lives and their content, we will certainly be tossed about and directed by the cultural influences flowing all around and through us. Media, personal relationships, work, chores, marriage are all part of the life canvas we are painting. Just as we cannot drive our car well without awareness of our ongoing movement, the direction of our lives demands attention and intention. My purpose with this writing is to challenge you to observe your seeing and your hearing. This is step one. Step two is to make your meaning valuable.
Try this little exercise. Imagine you are at the end of this life we’re living, You are taking your last breath. What would you like to say your life has been? Turning awareness to your whole life, ups, and downs, how do you complete this statement? “I’m glad my life has been _________________.” This is a choice you can live by right now.
We answer this question of life’s meaning about sixty thousand times a day with our eyes and ears, giving attention and meaning to our experience.
You are the intention to be part of goodness in life. Each of us is. We may not understand it at times, yet we are guided by an inherent intelligence which intends good. The proof of this intention is everywhere we look. We have only to notice flowers, clouds, our thinking and feeling to experience the majesty and unconditional love taking form through and around us.
As we appreciate, life becomes what we observe. We all use our senses to gauge what life means, and in this applied meaning we experience purpose.
The gift of life we give and take. In giving and taking we constantly apply meaning which changes. One moment we may be contributing, the next we may be receiving. Knowing our role moment to moment depends on how and where we use our attention and remains our own individual choice. That choice is directed by our eyes and ears.
Very few people develop the disciplined structure of their senses. Seeing and listening. Our eyes and ears flow information about the world around us all day long. What we see and hear becomes our experience, and like a river is constantly changing.
Stop for a moment. Be the river. What do you hear right now? What do you see right now? If you close your eyes and simply listen you turn off the visual input and hearing can dominate your experience. If you open your eyes and attend to objects visible around you, the meaning you apply becomes your life. How you feel in response to hearing and seeing is life’s assurance that you stay tuned into life’s purpose, which is unfolding goodness.
If we don’t slow down to appreciate, we don’t appreciate ourselves, for we are life experiencing itself. Most of us learn this lesson by struggling with interactions which, like the flowing river, carry us along according to the water’s nature. When we accept this flow and intend to use it for the benefit it intends, we lose our ego demands and resume being unconditional love. Flowing like water through experience, we literally are love taking form. Using our eyes and ears as resistance to what is naturally unfolding brings suffering.
Here again, we see the design of nature’s beauty. Appreciate, accept it as intending good, and experience being goodness. Depreciate, resent, and experience suffering. Simple discrimination of goodness in all experience is the key to peace. But simple does not mean without diligence. Each thought, movement, sound is shaped by our projected meaning.
All our lives we experience pleasure and pain. Both are part of a loving intelligence. All of us develop by combining these two in ways that make sense to us. A little bit of pleasure, a little bit of pain. Too much of either means suffering.
A young man, whose life included being abandoned by a father who didn’t know his own power to love, said this to me at the end of a counseling session: “I choose to have flawless vision.”
I have quoted him many times because this directive to himself is available to all of us. See life as beauty and your experience becomes beauty full. It’s up to you. Do you choose flawless vision?
This post was previously published on www.thefatherconnection.wordpress.com and is republished here with permission from the author.