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Spiritual ABC's -- The Letter A
In November, 2005, I shared a piece taken from one of my favorite books, Spiritual Literacy -- Reading the Spiritual in Everyday Life, by Frederick and Mary Ann Brussat. In that post, I offered their list of "spiritual ABC's" with no comment at all. Now, however, I find myself walking a renewed spiritual path of my own, and so I am inclined to work my way through those ABC's one letter at a time. I don't know, yet, if I'll find much to say about all of these, but I am content to let the words come as they may. I understand this may not be "it" for everyone, so feel free to go find something more interesting and exciting. My feelings won't be hurt much...
Pay attention. Stay awake and totally alert. See with receptive eyes and see a world of ceaseless wonders.
I have a greater respect for the act and choice of paying attention these days. Being awake and alert is necessary for a fully lived life. It is, of course, possible to just bumble along, stumbling through the days, seeing nothing of what is. I fell into that pattern, I think. I was wrapped up in staying alive, staying in place, holding on to what I imagined to be important and "real." I forgot to just look, just see, just perceive. And perhaps that isn't really even the truth. More accurately, I suppose I refused to look. I put metaphorical hands over the eyes of my mind and my heart and refused to look, see, or perceive. I missed seeing the hard things, but I also missed seeing the good things, the beautiful things, the amazing and wondrous things. I chose voluntary blindness, rather than allow myself to see the truth. That choice was wrong. It was a mistake. I cannot afford to miss a single bit of the wonder that is out there to see. Even when some of what I see is confusing, frightening, or ugly -- I will choose to pay attention and stay awake.