Enlightened Living

Meaning and mindfulness in everyday life

The Art of Becoming: Perfect Courage and Self-Creation

Be fearless – like a blade of grass...

In a conversation on fearlessness, Joseph Campbell remarked that a blade of grass, cut down over and over, is a wonderful metaphor for the notion of perfect courage. The blade of grass, despite unswerving adversity, never gives up.

The reason the blade grass never gives up is that it is completely unself-conscious. Not in that it lacks consciousness, but in that it is not self-conscious; it is simply in a state of constant becoming. In this, the blade of grass, cut down every two weeks by a lawn mower blade, is a metaphor for the ultimate state of mindfulness and witness consciousness.

The blade of grass lacks ego investment. It lacks attachment. It lacks anything that might get in the way of its being and its becoming. It simply is and continues, no matter what the obstacle or challenge, to be.

What if we were to approach our lives in this way? What if we stayed in the moment, looked fear in the eye with a smile and move through the adversities and troubles that we might encounter and simply moved through? Where would be our stress? Where would be our anxiety? Where would be our sense of hopelessness and overwhelm?

What if we were, in the words of Winston Churchill, to never, ever, ever give up? I suspect we just might find some peace.

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© 2009 Michael J. Formica, All Rights Reserved

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Michael J. Formica, M.S., M.A., Ed.M., is a psychotherapist, teacher and writer. He is an Initiate in the Shankya Yoga lineage of H.H. Sri Swami Rama and the Himalayan Masters.

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