I used to think I was more of a loner then a people lover
Recently I found out that was a convenient little lie
Not an intentional one
But I had to wait for a change in perspective to see the truth
I’m not a religious nutter (nutter yes possibly 🤣 – religious no)
But there is a lot of sense and a great deal of comfort to be found in ancient wisdom – because things don’t change as much as we like to think.
The human race continues with the same diversity of emotion and habits, problems and preoccupations that we always have
Meditations of Marcus Aurelius is one of my favourite books – the philosophy and wisdom of Stoicism applies equally to modern life as it did hundreds of years ago.
The advice feels contemporary- fresh
Recently I was cleaning out our holiday home
The bed had been killing our backs (my husband and I)
I thought If I moved the damn thing around and flipped the mattress then perhaps we would find some relief
It was an ensemble – so low to the floor you know?
Underneath in amongst the grey balls of dust and lint was a purple pen and a soft plain navy blue leather covered pocket bible.
I’m a bit of fan of messages from the universe – probably because I’m an over thinker so when I try to come to important decisions on my own I tend to think myself into a hole as large as the Grand Canyon.
Believing in an intelligent universe that comes to our aid when required is soothing – it takes the pressure off
I had been going through some deep thinking (or rather, deep questioning)
So there I was, mentally tromping around in circles on the floor of my personal Grand Canyon with no way to see ahead and here was this oddly placed little bible- the original self help book – still on the best seller list – I figured why not randomly choose a page and see what Jesus thought I should do.
It never hurts to get another opinion.
I fanned the pages and randomly picked a spot.
Read where my eyes hit the page.
“Knock and the door shall be opened”
The passage continued a bit further, I don’t recall the rest of it something about seeking and ye shalt find – it wasn’t all that important
I had my answer
A little broad but my imagination could definitely work with it – was already working with it and boom!
Instant airlift out of the Grand Canyon
It may not make sense to you but it did to me (it was my answer after all) and my door was blown open (metaphorically at least)
I believe the little bible belonged to the old lady who used to own our house
The bed was hers
And yes it freaked me out that the cleaners had never cleaned beneath the bed
And I hadn’t thought to because they (the cleaners) had done a great job everywhere else
Besides it was good because I found the little bible and at an opportune moment – the cleaners would have just thrown it out
But I can’t (throw it out)
And sometimes I open it and read a few lines
It doesn’t always make sense but often enough it does
Often enough for me to keep it in my bag
Often enough for me to take a random look now and then when I’m down there in the Grand Canyon you know – And it’s oddly comforting
Furthermore – I don’t know if it was that little book or something else but my perspective has changed
I have found that I am not a romantic melancholic loner (even though I still enjoy my own company very much and am prone to a little melancholia now and then)
On the contrary I love people – stupidly
From crusty interesting old men and women who are unique and hold so much wisdom (lucky enough to know quite a few of these and I do prefer the eccentrics)
To kids who are smarter then half the grown ups I know and all sorts of characters in between
Now when I get all choked up over a homeless person who smiles with such beauty when I offer them an impulsive $20 note that I have to take myself off and weep in a toilet somewhere
I don’t berate myself for being stupid and overly sensitive anymore
I am not afraid to feel
And feel deeply – even when it hurts or frustrates or angers rather than being a joy to mingle in a group.
My door is indeed open both literally and metaphorically
I have also had a change in perspective on the bible. There is a great deal of unnecessary weight on this book and aspects of it in my past have negative connotations for me such as:
When I was badly bullied for a time at school my Mum used to tell me to “turn the other cheek” this was not overly helpful not comforting particularly because Mum was too busy to go into exactly how to carry this instruction out whilst still retaining a modicum of self esteem.
I attended religious schools – Catholic in primary – Anglican in secondary (so I know there is not much difference between the two branches) yet I rarely found a truly loving compassionate person in the religious faculty (usually to the contrary) and so no one practiced what they preached – hence my abiding mistrust of religion
There is more but this post isn’t really about the bible and my past experiences with religion (not like me to become distracted 😁🙄🤫
Stick with me here – you may as well it’s been awhile now.
In trying to understand the bible in a different way – a less “religious” way – I found a book by Rob Bell called “What is the bible”.
It’s fantastic for shedding all the negativity and ponderous dogma around this book and instead seeing the bible for what it truly is – a collection of ancient stories and wisdom which involve a man who was a true revolutionary of his time and the band of rebels who followed him, loved him and then wrote their memoirs.
There is a lot of code in the bible and reading it in a modern context we miss a great deal of that – Rob explains some of this in his book and it’s an eye opener.
Have a great day x
Header Image: The beautiful stained glass silky oak doors on our newly built shipping container re treat in the coastal hinterland.
My husband took them out of an old building, replaced the glass and sanded them back. They were just plain ugly old clear glass doors covered in paint but he saw the potential and put in the work to make them beautiful.
So the picture seemed appropriate for today’s post🐛🦋