Monday, August 13, 2012

Shape Edges and Broken Open Moments



Breast cancer is full of sharp edges and broken open moments. The first weeks and then months usually involve tests, procedures and some sort of treatment. When you've completed these you feel like an egg that has been cracked open. Or perhaps a cup that has been shattered and now needs to be put back together. Or perhaps even more accurately it brings one to wabi sabi through the events which you have experienced:

One is reduced to her simplest form, and that form brought to a peak of focus by its relationship with the system in which it exists. That is to say, the presence of an self and the presence of the said system interact to strengthen each other...

Wabi sabi doesn't simply mean imperfection as most Westerners believe, rather it comes from a sense of feeling involving despondence (wabi) and solitude (sabi).  It is an process of evolving an aesthetic consciousness that creates a unique prism through which to look at one's life. That is through this progression one is reduced to essence and forced to look within. More pragmatically, cancer is the system which you will continue to live with; it can either weaken you or you can use it to strengthen you. In gaining strength you are able to better look within and gain an understanding that life becomes distilled to this: you understand emotionally and spiritually impermanence.

Perhaps impermanence would lead one back to despondence, rather it is liberating because you  appreciate the essence of beauty in the moments you have. So to bring it back to a more personal level, the presence of cancer in my life will continue to be a reality that flavors the moments I have left and it strengthens me to continue on and appreciate the blessing of the aforementioned moments in my journey....

Gratitude goes to a long ago teacher who introduced me to the concept of wabi sabi.

Tracy Chapman, "Broken":


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