13.8 billion years ago, one little amazingly compact ball of matter and energy, transformed, in the glimpse of an eye, into an ever-expanding universe. Just one looong ongoing transformation. Just a couple of years ago, I was on the fast track to becoming a Nanoscience-physicist. Today I am studying theology, trying to find my spiritual footing. What happened? I was transformed!
No, I didn’t meet the baby Jesus. I’ve always been a Christian of some sort. My transformation wasn’t Saul on the road to Damascus, meeting the Jesus he had been pursuing. I just realized, I wasn’t where I wanted to be. I wasn’t going, where I wanted to. I didn’t make anything of my life. I was just caught on a planet, trying to figure it all out.
So what transformed me? God? The holy spirit? Well, something happened. I saw my life, and it wasn’t good. It wasn’t bad either. It was just… that… Monotone really. I didn’t need to go find myself, because I knew myself. I had no need for selfmeditation or contemplation. Because I knew perfectly well who I was. Life just didn’t excite me. Not in a emo-I’m-gonna-cut-myself sorta way. More like a really mundane documentary on the reproduction of frogs in the amazon. You’re not gonna go to turn off the tv, but you aren’t entertained either. You just kill time.
So I dropped out! I got a job, in an amazing NGO, working daily, with all sorts of amazing, interesting, sometimes weird people. And that taught me so much about life, spirituality, the universality of the Truth and so on (But that’s another story). It wasn’t just a fantastic, beautiful process. No, I actually had to reshape my life. Take action on choices, that also meant, sorting away stuff. That meant chiseling away parts of me, that was in excess. Painfully grinding of parts of me, that I no longer had a use for.
The last, many years, has been an exercise in minimalism for me. I’ve been working hard on being the best I can be. Physically, spiritually, and personally. Losing weight, getting fit. Finding my way in theology, spirituality. Learning to be modest, about food, alcohol, life, and myself. I’ve not been finding myself, I’ve just been chiseling away all the excess. Like a sculptor, seeing the statue within the giant rock. All she must do, is chisel away all the excess stone. She doesn’t suddenly find a statue, when she breaks open the rock. The potential has always been there, she must just remove the parts, that don’t fit the statue. And that is the art of it all. But as you can imagine, banging a hammer into your stomach, will hurt. But there’s no easy three step plan. Only the long process of transforming yourself.
So may you not need to invent yourself. May you forget about finding yourself, or figuring out who you really are. May you BE you and see that it is the beauty of it. May you chisel away the excess. All that, which doesn’t add to your life, but just to your weight.
PS. But then what if you’re already perfect, and need no further chiseling? I congratulate you, the perfect specimen of mankind, and hope you will live a long and happy life. Venus de Milo also thought herself as perfect, until she saw herself in the mirror, and realized she had no arms.
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