Thursday, January 27, 2011

Reverting to Simplicity

I was walking down the sidewalk with my youngest son when he taught me a wonderful lesson. I was occupied in getting to our destination when he stopped. It was fall and the sidewalk was inundated with fallen leaves. He looked down at the multitude of leaves surrounding him, bent down and picked up two. One for me and one for his mommy. I asked him why he didn't pick one for himself, and he showed me his pocket, which contained an assortment of leaves, acorns and other assorted "treasures". Evidently he was much wealthier than I in the leaf department. What I learned from this seemingly innocent exchange is that I (like many of us) can get caught up in all the "extras" of life and overlook the simple treasures that surround us.

Some of the greatest pleasures in life are the simplest, a good book vs. one thousand channels. Water over the next super powered drink. Taking a walk as opposed to driving everywhere. The list is quite extensive. We have managed to surround ourselves with so much that we can literally be in a cocoon from life. How many of us have sat down next to our spouses or partners, watched a movie, but not actually speak with each other? In the larger scheme of things which would you weigh as more important, the movie or a great conversation with the person you have chosen to spend your life with.

Yet each day we are constantly rushing and moving towards, always towards something. So much so that we lose the moment we are in. In our training we have to, by nature of the training embrace the simple. Initially we learn the basics and it seems like a daunting task. After the basics are learned, the more advanced techniques are taught, what students learn is that the advanced techniques are built upon the basic simple ones. You must always revert to simplicity.

In our lives this is a worthwhile pursuit, instead of making our lives about the attainment of material things; let's pare down what exists so we can appreciate the intangibles.

It is now winter, and there are no leaves on the sidewalk, but I still appreciate the one my son stopped to collect so that I can have a reminder to do the same- stop every so often and let loose my sense of wonder.

Live simply.

strong spirit-strong mind-strong body

Sensei Orlando

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