Thursday, May 17, 2007


I recently heard this practice.

Look around you and see everything you can find that's red. Take your time and find everything.

Now, close your eyes and picture or identify all of the red things in your mind.

Ok, now remember the blue things around you.

What's directly behind you? What's the color and texture of the wall?

Open your eyes and look around. How close were you?

Most people will find that they can remember very few, if any, blue things. In my case I remembered one, but I was driving and kind of faking the process. I couldn't picture anything behind me without cheating.

The point is that we go around looking at only a fraction of the world. We notice very little when there is so much more around us to see and experience.

By staying within our comfortable and static lives we begin to insulate ourselves to only the world in which we surround ourselves. We begin to forget how to interact with the rest of the world.

I was in Richmond this past weekend, right next to a couple of relatively bad neighborhoods. It was a lot like when I grew up in DC. I found that it was very hard to remember how I lived that way and how to feign disinterest in everything around me. Really, I felt like an outsider. The only people I really connected with in the community were Caucasian, some in college and all within either a store or the retreat center. I just couldn't remember how to be comfortable enough to talk to strangers in this environment.

What do you do to break out of your community and remove those filters? How do you see everything the world has to offer? If you don't stretch outside yourself regularly, why not?



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