Look at me!

My oldest daughter and I got together the other day for a late Valentine’s Day rendezvous and ended up going to see The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. It was a good movie with wonderful cinematography and a display of creativity that is lacking in most respects these days. I was pleasantly surprised.

As well, the storyline offered abundant fodder for contemplation … and one of those morsels I offer here:

Beautiful things don’t ask for attention.

In context, the statement was made about the snow leopard, also known as the “mountain ghost” by the local people, because it chooses a solitary life, shunning attention. Taking that context a bit further, the implications of this quote can be quite humbling. The morsel becomes a mouthful.

If you dare linger, take a moment to consider the quote for yourself.

A thought comes to mind … that we all want to be “seen.” Is that a fair statement? Is there something deep within us that yearns for attention? I see it in myself. Sometimes it is quite noticeable. Other times, subtle. Perhaps there is purpose in it. Perhaps this desire, unconscious or not, actually moves us toward being who we are intended to be. Then again, perhaps we can go over-the-top with this desire … and fall out of balance. The implications? Once again, sit awhile with it and I’m guessing “answers” will flow in abundance.

Hey Mom, look at me! No hands!

Does that phrase bring a chuckle? Or a cringe … because we know what often happens right after the words come. Ah yes, boys will be boys. And girls will be girls … at least until they begin approaching their teen years, and then it seems, if walking around a mall offers any indication … they leap to being … or in the least, trying to be … “women.”

The world of marketing certainly knows of this “human” leaning. They are quite adept at stirring the embers of the ego, at times boldly, while at others with great subtlety. Early on, children are inundated with a deluge of messages that dig around in one’s psyche for a place to root. Fortunately for some, there are other “influences” in their life they pay heed to … and the roots don’t always set. For others, they allow the line to wrap tightly around their minds, hearts, and spirits.

And they become adults.

There is a great deal of emphasis put on appearance. I was leaning toward adding “these days” to the end of the last sentence, but I wonder if “we” have always been influenced by it. I suspect there have always been “the beautiful people” … the powerful … the influential … and all of them were likely found appealing by others in the age. Granted, it’s not merely the manner of dress, the ride, the income, or position. These things have never been alluring to me … but yet I’ve still noticed the ways I “seek attention.” I’ve felt the sting of not being accepted, which in itself could stir the desire to remedy the situation. Feeling this “sting,” in and of itself, is a reminder to me. I know how others view me isn’t important … but it still arises from time to time.

And then the question comes. Who am I? Am I the body of the man you see? Am I the clothes, the car, the job, or the money? Am I the wit not what I put on. If there is anger, bitterness, jealousy, and deceit in my heart and spirit, there is nothing made of man that could conceal their presence for long. Neither will charisma, great knowledge, or an extensive repertoire of one liners do so.

In turn, if my heart is light, seeking only that which is beautiful, there is nothing left to do. I will be seen for who I am. It’s for this reason I continue to walk this path as consciously as possible. I’m simply trying to remember what the snow leopard, the lily, and the aspen never forgot.

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