Life? A gift and a curse, an opportunity and a frustration, sometimes tough to live with, always impossible to live without, although some of us give that a good go!
There have been many debates about what constitutes life, and when I am walking round the Metro Centre ( my nearest big shopping mall ), I often wonder that myself.
After a lifetimes observation, where I recognise behaviours that tend to appear in people who get something meaningful out of life, I take an interest. For me life is expressed by those people who are doing things that keep them engaged and engaging. Maybe we can find meaning in consuming and a consumer culture, but I find no evidence to back that up despite the best efforts of the worlds marketers.
Over the years I have noticed patterns, in nature and in the nature of humans. I have always had an avid curiosity, where I see any pattern that repeats I am curious about why that is the case. If any pattern in nature repeats then maybe it delivers opportunities for life, or is driven by a set of particular circumstances.
The source of the word curious is the Latin word cura meaning to care. Because I want to understand why people are the way they are, I care about the patterns of human behaviour I see around me. I have noticed that when we have role models around us who care about the world and the others sharing that world, there are usually opportunities for personal and community development. So I continue to develop my innate inquisitive nature and my life/work is a product of that approach.
So the patterns I have noticed and then reinforced with learnings from other curious types lead me to understand that we all require certain things in order to thrive, it looks to me like this.
Everyone needs a certain security, a knowledge that the sun will shine tomorrow and we will still be surrounded by familiar things. Without this we become so unstable that we find it pretty much impossible to express our humanity.
Once we can rely upon some certainty in our lives, we need a sense that things can change. We need variety. We need to know that new and unexpected things can happen. If everything just stayed exactly as it had always been we would cease to be humans as we understand what it is to be human.
It seems that we also need to love and be loved and share a sense of connection with our friends and family. That connection is based upon sharing beliefs and values with those others around us. This gives us a sense of belonging. The flip side of this is that we also need to feel unique and special. As in many human situations this appears to be a paradox, we need to feel that we belong and we need to feel unique. From my observations and experience that is the way it is.
Finally we need to have the capacity for growth, without growth there is no life. And from that growth we increase our capacity to give and to receive. These last three, growth, giving and receiving always seem to come to the fore as we mature, and often lead people down a spiritual path. I use that term in the broadest possible sense. We need to feel that we can contribute to more than just our own needs. People may do this for all sorts of reasons, but to be fully human we have to share our skills and resources with others.
I don’t know why this is the way human life is but that is what I see. And when we get those things lined up, life really delivers an amazing opportunity!
I guess my work has grown from my curiosity. I have turned my observations into a practice that allows me to work with people who recognise that they want to develop their humanity and their ability to grow and give and receive.
I like it when we share our ideas about what life has to offer and always appreciate the opportunity to listen, observe and add to my understanding. If you feel you want to talk through my ideas and share your own views, use the contacts button in the menu above or the social media icons below.