Summer Solstice–2017

We are moving into the longest day of the year in Minnesota, light brightening our days and often, lifting our spirits and mood.  I know I like it.   But I don’t often think about what light is.  However, for thousands of years, humans have pondered the nature of light, pushing and pulling all areas of art, science, religion, philosophy, and play to try to understand its nature and power.

Finally, we know light dances in paradox.

When scientists study light and expect it to act as a particle, it is a particle.

When scientists study it as a wave, it is a wave.

Of course, this is impossible because a particle has mass, and a wave does not.

One scientist said light becomes the answer to the question we ask.

Thus, the questions we ask form reality.

This has significant implications for our lives.

The questions we ask ourselves have an impact on the answers we get.

Am I lovable?  Am I worthwhile?  Am I important?  Can I honor my gifts and talents even if they go against the culture (think gender expectations)?  How do I prove I am lovable, worthwhile, important?

More questions:  Am I enough?   Does my family’s opinion of me enclose me in expectations or break me out of culture’s definitions?  Do I have to prove myself superior to others in order to accept myself?  Do I need to control others to hide my shame?  Do I have the right to grow and change throughout my entire life and not accept a rigid sense of personality?

Can I respect people who are completely different from me and still feel safe?

What did I love to do when I was 8 years old, and why don’t I continue to do these things?

What are my dreams for my life?  What are my goals?  Do I need dreams?  Do I want goals?  Particle or wave?  Our questions create the answer.

We, too, are a scientific paradox, a creature that can observe our own thought process, challenge it, and change ourselves.

Are we a particle or a wave?  As receivers of light on this planet Earth, it depends on our question.  And the impossible answer is, we are both.

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Flowers and Weeds

With warm, sun-filled days, I am weeding.  My yard is a standard suburb lot, unusual for its many trees, a mini forest surrounding my home.

And with this natural beauty, I plant annual flowers in pots around the yard and delight in the robust perennials.

And I weed.

I find the sun and fresh air lift my mood.

I also notice that my mind calms as I routinely pull weeds between brick walkways and along the driveway.

I am also aware that some plants are plants when they grow where I want them to grow. The same plants are weeds when they volunteer in a place I don’t want them to grow.

This reminds me of thought, our thinking process.

Some thoughts are appropriate at a certain time and place, and the very same thoughts can feel invasive and irritating at another.

For example, an appropriate thought could be, “Oh, I made a mistake, and I need to apologize.”  While that thought may induce a sense of guilt, it also allows responsibility, and that is a lovely human trait, responsibility.  Knowing I recognize my mistake is a positive thought, allows me to be human like everyone else on the planet, and gives me the opportunity to take responsibility and learn from it.  It’s like planting a dahlia in the right place, enough sun and enough shade.  On the other hand, the thought, “Oh, I made a mistake, and I need to apologize,” when a home-cooked meal doesn’t turn out quite right, and the recipient of that meal becomes angry and verbally aggressive.  That thought is a little weed.  It doesn’t need to be in the mind.  Not all meals are perfect, and that’s okay.

Feeling guilty and responsible for someone else’s anger becomes a weed and comes at the wrong time in the wrong place.  In this case, the recipient of the meal should apologize for being angry and abusive.

Thoughts come and go, just like flowers and weeds.  We can mistake a weed thought for a flower.  Am I responsible for someone else’s inappropriate behavior?  No.  I am not.  So I can recognize the thought, sigh, and pull that weed thought out by the root.

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