January 6th is observed by some religions as the Feast of the Epiphany, a church festival celebrating the coming of the Magi to see baby Jesus. We celebrated it as Catholics when I was growing up. I think we may have had a day off of school (so good). I always think of it on the 6th and hope to have some kind of epiphany of my own on that day.
Well, as usual I did not, but on the 7th I can say that I did! I had an epiphany of sorts, inspired by the lovely Deepak Chopra.
I was listening to a 6-minute meditation in which he said, “Ask yourself, ‘Who am I? What am I?’ And then, ‘What is it that wants to know the answer to the question Who am I?'” Whoa. That is deep. He says you needn’t try to answer, just ask. Well, my meditation was interrupted but I did consider those questions as I wrote my morning pages and today I had what I am calling an epiphany. La!
Here, I just want to share the experience of having it. For me, writing freely, like I do in the morning, sometimes opens up the possibility that I will learn something. Maybe it’s not even a new something, or even new to me, but it might be fresh for me in that moment, on that day. And so it was. And on this grey and brown day I experienced a beautiful, bright and fresh idea that gave me lightness of heart.
This little meditation continues with the question, “What is my deepest desire?” Again he says, don’t try to answer. It will come to you as a sensation, feeling, image, or thought. Follow that with, “What is my purpose?, i.e. What are my gifts? What should I be doing with them? How can I help others?” And finally, “What am I grateful for?” Again, don’t worry about the answers; just see what arises. All of which leads to self-awareness, abundance, embracing unpredictability, connecting with others, bringing out creativity, connecting with spirit.
Holy smokes! All of this in a 6-minute meditation! I didn’t even hear half of it the first time and yet it provoked my beautiful epiphany. Of course, I experience these kinds of things as so very ephemeral. I want them to last, I’d like to be a changed person, Dalai Lama-ish, never again bothered by petty things, beautifully aligned with spirit and others Forever and Ever Amen–but I’m well aware that these states of mind are fleeting. I’ve put a star next to this meditation so that I can listen to it again and again, in the hope that one day these feelings will stick. And I can reread what I wrote this morning whenever I want. I am in charge of that.
So many teachers, everywhere. I try to be the student I was not, in high school.
“It’s the hard things that break; soft things don’t break. It was an epiphany I had today and I just wonder why it took me so very, very long to see it! You can waste so many years of your life trying to become something hard in order not to break; but it’s the soft things that can’t break! The hard things are the ones that shatter into a million pieces!” ― C. JoyBell C.
“Whereas life separates meaning from emotion, art unites them. Story is an instrument by which you create such epiphanies at will, the phenomenon known as aesthetic emotion.” ― Robert McKee, Story
“Rather than getting more spoilt with age, as difficulties pile up, epiphanies of gratitude abound.” ― Alain de Botton
“Epiphanies awaken the soul.” ― A.D. Posey
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Thanks for listening,
P.S. MerryThoughts is the name of my first book, out of print at the moment. The word is a British one, referring both to a wishbone and to the ritual of breaking the wishbone with the intention of either having a wish granted or being the one who marries first, thus the “merry thoughts.”