March 2010: What’s in a Centre Point?
If you have read the previous two entries, you will be aware of my musings about life, and counselling, as a journey. In addition, the symbol of the daisy serves well as a visual representation of this journey as we all need a centre point from which to venture forth and to return to.
I also mentioned that at times it can feel like we are traveling up the stem in search of our centre point: being at home with ourselves and in the world. So many factors are at play in our personal formation. We are remarkably complex creatures with an intricate interplay of biological, psychological, social, and spiritual features. Sometimes we focus on one area to the exclusion of the others: often to our detriment. Most would assert that life is not so simple.
To find our centre point is no less complicated. In my recent readings, I have been encountering ways of understanding my place in the world, the universe, the cosmos, the grand scheme of things. Or maybe more accurately—my awareness of my place in the cosmos. My centre point may be as simple as practicing mindfulness: being aware that I am a part of the Bigger Picture. My very existence is a piece that fits into the puzzle.
For me, and my belief system or worldview, that awareness is connected to creation and its Creator. I can be aware of the sun that lights my world, enabling me to observe and wonder at the birds flitting in the evergreen just outside my window. I can be connected to their existence as I tend to my own daily needs. And if I so choose, I can be aware of the presence of the Creator in that moment.
We all have spiritual hang ups. Our perceptions of who we are, who God might be, and our spirituality affect all the other ways we simultaneously exist (socially, biologically, psychologically). How we see ourselves in the Bigger Picture affects our centre point—of being at home with ourselves and in the universe. Am I a piece of the puzzle or floating aimlessly about?
Or perhaps we are a particular note of the song of Creation. According to creation stories of Australian Aboriginals, the created world was sung into existence; and we, as human occupants, participate in this song keeping the earth’s spirit alive.1 What connection do you have with the Creator and all of creation?
Even if a person is uncomfortable with associating the Bigger Picture with anything that vaguely hints of religion, finding one’s place in the grand scheme of things remains possible. In order to do so, using the words of author Gabor Maté, we must “look past ourselves and find some meaningful relationship with the universe outside the confines of our egotistic needs.”2
It appears paradoxical: to become at home with oneself and the world we must include in our view something other than ourselves. From your viewpoint, what makes you feel at home?
1 Colin Ellard (2009), Where am I? Why we can find our way to the moon but get lost in the mall, Harper Collins, p. 51.
2 Gabor Maté (2008), In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction, Vintage Canada, p. 392.