Saturday, May 7, 2011

A thing of beauty is a joy forever

To me, it’s a thing of beauty ...

  • To sit at a table in the early morning light, with a steaming cup of tea, well before the rest of the household awakes, and read and reflect on scripture, tackle my to-do list, or just do the long-range planning that's a common casualty in the hustle and bustle of daily life.
  • To give both my kids gentle, full-body squeezes every morning as a way to usher them into the new day, and to feel my love flow through my hands into their delicate bodies
  • To hear (my son) Rithvik’s cheery “Hi, Appa!” ring out the moment I walk in the door, regardless of where he happens to be in the house, because for years he gave no indication he even noticed my arrival.
  • To see good communication: a message of some significance expressed directly, respectfully and economically, with matching non-verbal affect, then received clearly, interpreted correctly and acknowledged. The phenomenon of meaning being transferred from one human being to another is no small miracle.
  • To see service and teamwork in action – on a large scale, with a leader outlining a bold vision, and committed support players following the plan with no concern for credit, or in a more mundane scenario, maybe at the dinner table for instance, silently placing a pad to receive a descending hot dish or offering the salt a moment *before* your spouse opens their mouth to ask for it.
  • To witness your friend or relative about to hurl some hot words in the heat of an argument, but at the last moment, with visible effort, hold back those words – especially when they have been working for a long time on their anger.
  • When I hear some of my favorite pieces of music. What mastery of the craft, what genius (and presumably what pains) must have gone into the making of the piece! How can sounds generated from a little shiny disc transport me to places of such soul-shaking intensity of feeling?!
  • Is music. Blessed music. What ability it has to transport me, especially when the hand of a master of the craft is evident. When coupled with devotion, it touches me deep inside, in places where pure love and joy reside, and under waves of glorious music I can feel layers of accumulated dirt wash off my soul, leaving it lighter, softer and stronger. And in an exceptional session like the one earlier this evening, I am left with the conviction that after being bathed in such surpassing beauty and truth I could never again speak a harsh word to another human being, or commit an act of violence, or indeed act in any way other than completely lovingly.
  • When I can go through an entire winter without using my winter coat or gloves :-).
  • To bound up the stairs to Rithvik's bedroom for the umpteenth time every night in response to his summons on the baby monitor, and to be able to do so with neither a trace of irritation nor an air of martyrdom, knowing fully well that each run I make is a premeditated investment that pays back in spades, in terms of the trust and bond between us.
  • To drop in at this blog anytime and always be able to get something that makes my brain go “Huh?”, “Wow” or whirr, be it a zinger from Teflon, musings on playing or running from Iris, a thoughtful piece by Kathy, a wry & honest look at oneself from Faith, a direct and unconventional question from Joy…

What are the things of beauty, be they enduring or fleeting, in your life?


1 comment:

  1. Sree,
    So much beauty.

    I really enjoyed reading your list. It got me thinking of how much beauty there is in the everyday and how often I overlook it.

    To watch Iris intently focused on her MacBook, typing and pausing occasionally to laugh and giggle.

    To lean back against the counter and survey the freshly cleaned kitchen.

    To hear the ding that email has arrived and see the new writing prompt from Jenny.

    To listen to Luke's latest discovery about life and adulthood.

    To run as fast as I can, stretch my arms and just barely catch a frisbee.

    To improvise a an amazing riff and land it right in time with the band.

    To sit a night and read the wonderful posts of friends like you.

    Thank you!


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