"Why is patience so important?
Because it makes us pay attention."
-- Paulo Coelho
If you've been reading these Daily Inspirations for a time, you might have seen one of the several posts I've done about my learning to "practice" patience. It's kind of a fantasy to think that patience will just come to us as some kind of wisdom that sprouts from accumulated knowledge. I found that as I was willing to actually practice patience, that I learned how to have more patience in my life. Alternatively, the lack of willingness to practice it, keeps patience at bay.
This morning, I was looking for something else, and I found this absolutely wonderful quote above by Paulo Coelho. As I absorbed it's concise message, I had a whole new way of understanding and viewing the idea of patience. I said to myself, "Of course! That makes perfect sense. I can see that now."
It had me thinking of patience as a sort of out-of-body experience, as a mind that is viewing the whole scene in and around me, being unattached to any of it, as an observer--no emotion, no judgment. That's really what patience is all about I think, and I've certainly experienced it that way, but really hadn't thought of it in these terms. Previously, it was more like a letting go of my concerns, allowing me to experience some peace where others may be uptight and anxious. And, I found such relief in the practice.
Now, I think, I can take that practice to a whole other level because I can see so much more than I did before. The whole idea of the practice of patience causing me to pay more attention to what is going on around me--or often, in my face, is profound. It makes me independent of the situation, as well as independent of myself, my thoughts, and my emotions. It's like watching from above, like an out-of-body experience.
Patience really is about paying attention, but doing so as from a distance. I'm not so involved as I might have been before, and yet seeing so much more than I would have otherwise seen. This allows me to clearly see multiple points of view. It encourages understanding. And this perspective encourages calmness and brighter presence of mind.
Patience Is Certainly A Worthy Practice.
Spread Some Joy Today--by seeing life as if you are not engaged, but an observer. See all that joy? Spread some of that.