From River Abel:
Roger Housden wrote in SEVEN SINS FOR A LIFE WORTH LIVING the following: “In Japan there is an entire worldview that appreciates the value of the imperfect, unfinished, and faulty. Wabi Sabi is the aesthetic view that sees beauty in the modest and humble, the irregular and earthy. It holds that beauty comes with the patina of age and in the changes that come with use. It lies in the cracks, the worn spots; in the green corrosion of bronze, the pattern of moss on a stone. The Japanese take pleasure in mistakes and imperfections.
Day by day, tiny specks of us float away. No matter which exercise or diet regimen we follow, no matter which self-help guru we believe in, nothing will dispel the reality that we are not built to last. Death is our supreme limitation, the final proof that perfection was never meant to be part of the human experience. A hundred years from now, all new people. Sooner rather than later, we shall not be here: no eyes, no nose, no ears, no tongue, no mind; no you or me—gone.
Yet knowing the extent of our limitation, feeling our soon-not-to-be-here-ness in our bones, is the best condition we can have for waking up to the miracle that we are here now at all. And if you think about it, that is the brilliance of the human design plan: The built-in “defect” is the very thing that can spur us to drink down the full draught as it comes to us. Better to taste it now, this life that we have, than to defer it to some future that may never come.”
I came across this as I was flipping through that book to help narrow down my blog topic. Contemplating my death was pretty much low on my proverbial list of things to do. I had too much unhappiness to do in past and boy oh boy, did I do it well ! Whining, moaning, finger pointing, yelling, crying, disengaging, over eating, not exercising ... blah, blah, blah ... I did a great deal of drama for years over my prior employer treatment of me. Yet I had been afraid to leave out of fear. This past spring I left as an easy decision which was rooted in the question “what do I want ?”. I wanted to leave. Period. Finally, and with great gratitude for my tenacity looking at this topic, I left after almost 28 years of employment. Months later, I continue to be comfortable and confident over this decision. No regrets. I look forward.
I have accessed my self love again and turned that up and am rockin’ with it. My desires and wants are running rampant rather than being squashed by my unhappiness. It feels wonderful to be wanting again. I see my wanting as a direct and profound connection with my level of happiness. The happier I am, the more I want. While tangible items area a small part of my wantings, they are focused more on experiences I want to have, connections with others I want to create, fears and walls I want to explore and change, a new business I’ve started and am moving towards making very successful, friends I want to see and invest in deeper relationships, travel, likely move out of the area, etc. A fun thing I want to do is to take tap dance lessons again! I’ve got a call into the dance studio that I took lessons starting when I was 8 years old as I still know the family that runs the place. Hear that ?... The music is starting ... 5, 6, 7, 8 ... I’m becoming a voracious wanter now and am tapping my way towards them !
What’s my connection with wanting and death? I just got it today. A close friend for years has shared with me that he contemplates his own death every day. Bears has mentioned “ momento morte” in a handful of programs I’ve taken. Oh ... “momento morte” ...means “remember you will die”. This was a common greeting amongst a group of monks in Italy centuries ago. Today I recognized that I got a great deal of wantings I want and I am sure I will create others too. As another friend told me “when you’re dead, you’re dead for a very long time”. I want so much. My time is limited.
As the quote above states so well“The built in "defect" ( death) is the very thing that can spur us to drink down the full draught as it comes to us. Better to taste now, this life we have, than to defer it to some future that may never come”. So raise your glass with mine and let us all go for our wantings as we're going to die!