January 20, 2017

Beauty Abounds

I think every carrot from the garden is a gift of beauty from the Earth. Every carrot, large, small and differently shaped.

There is a lot of pain in the world right now. It is real, and it is not necessarily your fault. Brace yourself, after today there is likely to be a lot more.

Joe Brewer thinks that what you are feeling is a symptom of capitalism dying.

It is that, and more. It is just about everything we know that is dying. Systems that we have relied on for decades are ceasing to deliver the goods. Diminishing returns are everywhere. No one seems to know what to do, although times like these do spawn slick sales people that appear to have all the answers.

The death knell of change even tolls for The Circus, which is closing after 146 years. The billionaire owner said something to the tune of "more has change in the last 10 years than the last 40". A lot of that change has been ugly, and not just for the circus.

In spite of this, beauty remains.

Yes, there is a lot of ugliness out there. But there is always more beauty. Ugliness and pain have limits. Beauty is infinite.

But only if we have the time and calm state of mind necessary to perceive it.

Now, more than ever before, it is important to find the beauty in every moment. Because there is always something beautiful regardless of where you are at. Open yourself to it, and it will appear. Enjoy it. Revel in it. Share it around.

As the rate of change continues to accelerate, and as yucky stuff rises to the surface, we need something to get us through. That something is the beauty that exists in every moment. It is a salve for the mind.

Then, refreshed and reassured, we can do what needs to be done.


  1. I have to admit, even though I'm on the other side of the world, I still cried when watching history being made this morning. Tears of anger and outrage quite frankly. I also think nothing is going to be the same again, yet I hugged my children tight and determined to find beauty for us in the garden. Growing things makes me feel at least a little in control, or or is it just slightly less out of control?! In our garden, the zucchini and pumpkins are starting to have lovely bright flowers, and the tomatoes are coming along nicely. Everything is flowering and there is hope and gratitude at least in our immediate surrounds.

  2. I attended a health summit Thursday. I loved the energy in the room despite daunting statistics. We had a great speaker who was very motivational. The sense of community was awesome. Positive people pooling meager resources and changing destructive behaviors.

  3. Yesterday was my birthday. I used to joke that the USA threw a big party for me every four years. Yesterday was a day of mourning for me. The only gift I asked for was that Mom not turn the TV on all day. That would be a gift any day for me, but yesterday it was a necessity.

    Lately I've gone inside myself, closing off the outside world as much as possible. In the quietude I find peace and the realization that all that noise out there isn't reality. Nature moves on as always, it doesn't take notice of kings or kingdoms, it goes on as always. My need is to center into stillness, then I can face what comes.

  4. Thank you for this post, the world is changing and it is the uncertainty and not knowing how long the transition will last that is so unsettling. I sometimes think the 20th century must have been an anomaly in human history- in it we seem to have seen the best and worst mankind can do. In the UK it feels as though we are returning to the Victoria era, money seemingly everywhere but none for public services.

    Anyway I will stop being negative and do as you say and focus on the beauty all around and try to be the change I want to see in the world.

  5. Read this quote again by Wendell Berry and thought I'd share:

    It may be that when we no longer know what to do we have come to our real work, and that when we no longer know which way to go we have come to our real journey. The mind that is not baffled is not employed. The impeded stream is the one that sings.

  6. The NBA community is beautiful, indeed. I love reading the words here, from Gregg and Linda, and from all the readers. By being good to ourselves, we are naturally good to all others (humans, other animals, and Nature).
    I went to our local REI this morning to see about buying a new hoodie. I've been considering it for awhile. And the BEAUTY of that trip was that not one stitch of merchandise in that store appealed to me. Nothing. It was all cheaply made, had no soul, and seemed destined for a landfill. Yuck!
    I resolved to enjoy the clothes I have and accept that while others may truly believe that "more" is the answer, I am fortunate to know very deeply that it is not. The answer, for me, is to enjoy the heck out of every one of my beautiful days on this mysterious, generous, gorgeous planet.
    Erin in TX

  7. I've been an emotional roller coaster for 6 weeks, no longer. In the low spots I've cried. I've been afraid. No terrified and traumatized. I've felt emotionally overwhelmed. I've grieved. It feels like the U.S unleashed unbounded capitalism on the world. Capitalism does not care about the earth or us. We may see see destruction at an unprecedented alarming rate. It saddens me deeply. I've had to do like you Miss Marla and turn off incoming media. Get quite. Figure out what all this means to me personally. I'm beginning to find out. That Wendell Barry quote defines these past weeks for me.

    The long range view is perhaps the death of capitalism is good. The short term is dying capitalism is going to be painful. It's not going to die peacefully. It's going kick and scream. The top is going to fight to amass every single dollar it can possibly squeeze out of us. It's going to abandon us in ways we can't imagine.

    In the high spots, I've smiled. I've laughed. I've felt empowered. I've felt committed and determined to do everything I can to push back on the insanity and chaos that's upon us. I have felt United. The Women's March across the globe tells me there is hope. Reading homemade signs that people made to carry in the marches gets me laughing out loud! People are woke up and taking action! I find it exhilarating! (And I know that 5 states have initiated legislation to take away our right to peacefully assemble. North Dakota has written in their proposed bill to make it legal to run over people who assemble in the streets! Absurd! But shows how bad it really is. And we can't count on the Supreme Court to overturn absurd inhumane state legislation especially once that seat gets filled.)

    Pantsuit Nation and the Women's March Facebook pages are intermittently crashing Facebook because so many people are posting. Posting incredibly powerful stories of how people are waking up, rising up, standing up, uniting, facing up to this shit that is threatening us. Highly recommend connecting with both if you are feeling alone and feeling despair. I'm overwhelmingly encouraged, empowered and figuring out where my place is going to be in the "push back." Cause I am going to join in and resist.

    Do what you can where you are, it all matters. When they go low, we go high. (Michelle Obama)

    Besides the birds feeding outside my window as I type this today, the beauty I see today is the united human spirit.

    The number one thing that tops my list when thinking what does all this mean to me, where is my place in it, and what am I going to do, is live simple. Keep simplifying. Keep getting myself in a position where I am least dependent on capitalism. Role model simple living. Not Buying Anything Blogspot seems more urgent than ever. Thanks for indulging me in long comments lately. I'm sorting things out.

  8. Beautiful and thoughtful words Terri. I wholeheartedly concur xx

    1. Thank you Karen, I'm always uplifted by your thoughtful comments here. Hearing you describe your garden above gives me pleasant thoughts of peace, joy and beauty.

  9. Completely agree with all I read here -- simplify, see the beauty, unite, and I would add "remember"- it will not last. It never does. Things roll and change. Be flexible and adaptable, accepting and hopeful. Stay away from mainstream media as that will get uglier very fast, and turn to those who support and nurture your soul. Like NBA. Thank you everyone. Peace. -- Mary


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