I know someone… let’s call him Fred… who, at least from how he interacts with others, seems to me to be profoundly unhappy. He seems to assume that if he doesn’t understand something then there is nothing there to be understood. When blessings cause his cup to overflow, he seems unable to appreciate it and complains about the bigger cup that he doesn’t have. When told that he seems very negative he has responded that he’s simply being realistic! His approach seems to be that you can call it anything that you want so long as you don’t call it what it is! He does not like his life and yet seems unable or unwilling to change it. So, one day, Life itself decided to change it for him. Late one night while on a cruise he fell overboard… and no one noticed! When a passing ship pulled him out of the water a few days later the person who they pulled out of the water was not the same one who fell into it! Fred was happy… happy to have been saved, happy to be alive, happy to have another chance at life!
Sometimes we box ourselves in by our view of things. “It’s too much trouble”… “I’ve never liked that”… “What’s the use!” When we convince ourselves that there is nothing of value to be seen we become blind to what is there. Having indulged often enough and long enough in negativity one forgets how to be happy. Negativity boxes us in. The Hawaiian musician Robert Cazimero once made the comment,
“Be open! Be open to the gifts that are coming your way!” So what shift must occur within us in order for us to become free of the prison that we have invested so many years in building? Instead of thinking negatively, assume that there is something positive to always be encountered… in people, in traditions other than one’s own, even in foods one has never tasted! What we look for, we find. It’s as simple as that.
What do you look for? What do you see? And more importantly… what don’t you see?!