Humorist Art Buchwald said "The best things in life aren't things." Perspective matters.
When we get the perspective wrong, or it's drastically limited, there could be trouble, as John Yemma, Editor of The Christian Science Monitor points out in a recent editorial. We didn't see the economic warning signs—well, most of us didn't see them—prior to the 2008 market crash. Whether that's because we were satisfied seeing things through the lens of conventional wisdom or because we shut our eyes completely and let the bubble of good times roll, the fact is most of us missed seeing what we needed to see.
The economy is just one sector where that can happen. Lucinda Wingard, a Monitor reader in the State of Washington, expanded on the importance of perspective saying that in the world of journalism in the U.S. many of the media outlets are America-centric in their news coverage and that "Americans need and deserve deeper journalism and a broader perspective than this." Do we take to heart what she's saying and grow our world view, or do we just go with the information flow? Think carefully. It matters.
Now what we're seeing, again, is health care take center stage. Exchanges are rolling out, multiple insurance options are being evaluated and families are trying to figure out what their insurance will cost them. Much of what we call health care starts to look like a numbers game. Or so seems the perspective from the unstable surface.
What the numbers don't reveal, and what they can't make up for, is the deeper need people feel for calm, simplicity, fearlessness, a quieter mind and body, qualities that form the bedrock of a healthy and happy life. It doesn't take yet another academic study to validate what mainstream folks intuit and find every day, that a commitment to spirituality is beneficial to their health.
Maybe through all the tugs and pulls of trying to fix society's broken health care system we'll find that something as natural as intuition—a spiritual intuition—is underneath the surface, prompting us to break with the status quo and pay attention to a calmer, deeper perspective. Maybe something outside of ourselves is urging us to look beyond material "things" if we're to find a sound basis for healthy living.
Is it too late for that? Most of the time, many of us may believe it is. Politically and institutionally, the popular perspective on health care looks locked-in.
But don't be surprised if something unexpected starts to catch on and quietly steer health care in a different direction. Course-changes aren't necessarily sudden and dramatic. They can be silent and gradual, like the changing New England leaves in Fall. One day you notice unmistakable signs of what's naturally been churning below the surface for quite some time.
The perspective we have helps us make sense of what's going on in our world. The point is that what our eyes tell us is happening on the agitated surface regarding health care may not be all there is to see. Maybe something innate to us, something strongly supportive of health, something spiritual and natural is stirring the waters of everyday life and deserves closer and deeper attention. Think carefully. It matters.
My intuition tells me that a course change is underway.