Saturday, February 04, 2017

The Power Of Beauty

“Looking at beauty in the world is the first step of purifying the mind”.
-Amit Ray
“There’s only one reason why you are not experiencing bliss at this present moment, and it’s because you’re thinking or focusing on what you don’t have.  Right now you have everything you need to be in bliss”.
-Anthony de Mello
“What Need Have I for This?  What Need Have I for That?  I am dancing at the feet of my Lord!  All is bliss!  All is bliss!
-The title of a song by a wonderful band called Shakti
In many ways we live in a ugly world, especially if you live in a large city.  Many people also find the present an ugly time emotionally.  Much of the world is suffering from wars and famine and the lack of basic human rights.  The United States is a country deeply divided by politics and economics.  It is a challenge not to despair.  How does one cope with an ugly world?  One way is to notice beauty.  The famous writer Victor Hugo says “To love beauty is to see light”.  Before you can look at beauty you have to notice it.  I love beautiful things.  My mind and my spirit are occasionally overwhelmed by the ugliness of life.  Nothing will make it go away so we must learn to live with it.  I live with it by calibrating my senses to be on the alert for beauty, especially in places where I do not expect to find it.  When I am lucky I find myself in places of true beauty like a national park or any quiet and serene place. 
When I am attuned to beauty, my mind is purified and I am in bliss.  Beauty in all its forms can be overwhelming in the sense that it creates a lightness of being that transcends the moment.  You can be carried away by beauty.  If you are hurrying through life and you are not in the moment you will likely not notice the beauty in your life and you will never have a sense of bliss.  
Yesterday while I was walking around the office a person stopped me and said, “I heard you used to live in a monastery”.  Most people who know me know that I did once live in a monastery.  My Facebook and Twitter bio states that “I am an aging hippie that once lived in a monastery”.  I give my monastic experience the credit for forming me into the person I am.  It is my belief that I think the way I do because of the time I lived in a monastery.  Do you want to have deep thoughts?  Go take a walk in the woods and listen to the wind blowing through the trees.  You will see beauty and you will feel bliss.

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