Working Together

"We shape our self
to fit this world

and by the world
are shaped again..."

Excerpt from "Working Together" © David Whyte
in The House of Belonging

Many Rivers Press

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Transparency? Just asking!

I was asked a while back to imagine a perfect life for myself and I couldn't. [I may have given up on self improvement but I have a hired gun to keep tossing me questions of this nature.] I gave a lame excuse at the time that had something to do with my age. Yes, I played the "age" card and she let me get away with it.

I really don't think it is because I lack imagination that I cannot imagine success for myself but I remain vague about something that everyone else is hard wired into. A sense of place in the world. I have lived my life in some sort of odd autistic chamber of necessities fueled by industry, it seems to me. Perhaps there was never the opportunity to wonder in terms of my possibilities...or perhaps I forgot to wonder who I would be when I was young. I'm not sure if that is the case but it has occurred to me that my word for 2010 should include some kind of extension on the value I have discovered this last year in wonder.

Transparency is topical these days but it doesn't seem to me that it is understood well in terms of how it exposes personal vulnerability in communication. I have witnessed myself being unclear in interesting ways in the last year. Initially I often think it is the other person but, chagrined, I realize that it was me all along who was withholding information or forgetting to asking questions. I'm not a very trusting person and not asking up front comes with this territory. When trapped with a difficult question, I imagine the answer and I am then interred in a "forced wonderment and justification". In really threatening situations I can dabble in "righteous indignation" while imagining why people are so unhappy with me. Clearly a waste of time and the bountiful harvest of a fruitful imagination.

So, while I have no intention of re-entering the "self-improvement" trap, I see no reason not to support my existing condition of wonder and enhancing my new understanding of value and economy by choosing this years word as "clarity" - with the goal of a more fun and focused use of my imagination while I'm indulging in Popeye zen music gluten free biscuits.

So here we go: "2010? Can you hear me now?"



1. clearness or lucidity as to perception or understanding; freedom from indistinctness or ambiguity.
2. the state or quality of being clear or transparent to the eye; pellucidity: the clarity of pure water.

1300–50; ME clarite < class="ital-inline">clāritās; r. ME clarte .

1. intelligibility, exactness, simplicity.
  1. Clearness of appearance: the clarity of the mountain air.

  2. Clearness of thought or style; lucidity: writes with clarity and perception.

[Middle English clarite, brightness, from Latin clāritās, clearness, from clārus, clear; see clear.]

c.1340, from O.Fr. clarté, from L. claritatem "clearness," from clarare "make clear."

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