Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Letting life unfold

Jon Kabat-Zinn, whose specialty is mindfulness-based stress reduction, has a lovely way of describing how we can simply let life unfold. Make no mistake, however, letting life simply unfold isn't simple! Most of us tend to try force things into our preconceived notions of how they should be. Often, that doesn't work out—have you noticed?

Anyway, here's what Kabat-Zinn says: "Non-doing simply means letting things be and allowing them to unfold in their own way. Enormous effort can be involved, but it is a graceful, knowledgeable, effortless effort, a doerless doing."

Got it? Hmmm, perhaps not. It really does go against the grain of our typical way of being. Perhaps you have learned how to allow things "to unfold in their own way." If so, kudos to you. I'm still trying to learn this. I know that forcing an outcome doesn't work. But just letting go and letting things be is difficult. It's a life lesson on which I'm working.

I wonder whether I shouldn't post Kabat-Zinn's words somewhere so I'll read them daily. Perhaps in time the "graceful, knowledgeable, effortless effort" way of being might sink more deeply into my consciousness. That description intrigues and invites me. How about you?

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