The Sun was in full flow today. Birds were singing, Beagles were barking, and I was brushing the driveway – more for some peaceful meditation than to tidy the Beagle carnage of chewed up plants and twigs. The Sun puts people in a happy place. It makes everyone want to go out and play like teenagers or laze about like Sloths, soaking up all that lovely vitamin D. Yeah, the Sun actually provides you with vitamin D, a pretty essential vitamin required by the human body for healthy bones. Think of all the vitamin D you’re depriving yourself of when you slather yourself all over with factor 50. It’s all about perception yet again – “The Sun is dangerous and will give you skin cancer.” vs “The Sun provides us with much required Vitamin D and gives our planet the means to thrive and exist.” Without that big enormous explosion in the sky, taking 8 minutes to beam light to us here on earth, we would not exist as a species. I can totally get why people of old used to worship the Sun as a deity. If you think about it the Sun is the only visible thing from earth that we could direct our concept of a Higher Being towards. It accounts for 99.86% of the Solar System’s mass. That’s a big chunk. So it makes sense that the Sun, with it’s imposing size, it’s generous crop producing light and warmth, and it’s strange glowing allure could be seen as the life giving Deity we all seem programmed to seek out and connect with.
But, like the age old Creation vs Evolution debate, does it really matter what we call the Sun and what we believe it to be? The fact is that it is there, in plain sight, and it doesn’t demand anything from you. It’s there to give you life. It’s scientiffically proven to bring happiness, and health. Now I don’t know about you but I like my Deity’s to come with a big generous side of happiness and health. That’s why it doesn’t seem foolish in the slightest to me that people still worship the Sun and see it as a Deity of the highest order. It also doesn’t seem foolish to me that other people see it as the result of a random explosion which brought order from chaos. It simply doesn’t matter because when that Sun comes out and those rays start hitting my skin I’m like Hucklebery Finn and Tom Sawyer all rolled up into one overgrown boy. I’m just glad it’s there. I’m thankful for what it brings. I’m enjoying it one moment at a time. I’m not thinking about when it’s going to go away. I’m smiling at everyone in the street and blocking out the negative cries of “this is probably our summer and it’ll be raining tomorrow!” The funny thing is I’m the same in the rain…
“That’s a terrible day isn’t it?” said Mum, referring to the torrential rain beating the windows to a pulp. Seizing my chance to show her that my ancient fusion of Buddhism and Christianity was much more powerul than her modern day Christianity I floored her with “This is the day that the Lord hath made, Mum. We should rejoice and be glad in it.” I give her a cheeky smile, the cheeky smile she remembers that always got me off the hook at every turn of my life, from infancy to my dumbass 40’s, and she fires me that look… that look that says “Damn you and your infernal hybrid philosophy. But I know all is well with your soul.”
I am that annoying guy… that guy who says things like “What? You think rain is awful? Rain is as responsible for life on earth as the sun is! Rain gives us this lush green country that people travel from all over the world to visit. It also helps producing the crops that go into making some mighty fine whisky… and the rest.” I’ve learned to find something to appreciate in every circumstance and in every happening. That causes me to look into things in more detail. When a wasp annoys me I go and Google “What purpose do Wasps serve?” That’s when I find out they’re important for pollination. I then cut the little pests some slack and we just agree to keep out of each other’s way. I’m also the guy who winds his wee Christian Mum up at every opportunity. I do it more to challenge her, challenge myself, and hopefully spark a nice healthy debate about spirituality. It sometimes descends into me losing the plot – just like when I was a kid – and sometimes it stays at a nice lofty height and we all stay in the warm fuzzy zone. What I make of my Mum’s theology is irrelevant and what she makes of my philosophy is equally as irrelevant. Our reality can only be determined by what we believe for ourselves. One man dances in the rain while another man curses the clouds that bring it. One man basks in the sunshine while another cowers away for fear of burning. One man believes everything as it has been handed down to him by generations of others while another chooses to ask questions and search for answers anywhere possible.
Dr Wayne Dyer, one of my favourite authors, and someone I would class as a mentor of sorts, wrote a book called “Change Your Thoughts Change Your Life – Living The Wisdom Of The Tao”. It’s a translation of the Tao Te Ching which was written by a man called Lao Tzu some 2500 years ago. The opening line reads “The Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao. The name that can be named is not the eternal name.” In other words – once you put a label on it you negate it. You don’t need to identify with any label to create happiness – bask in the sun, dance in the rain, just be happy. Throw yourself out of your comfort zone and start looking at things differently. Start being thankful for the things that annoy you the most in life. Try it – you’ll be amazed at how creative you can be when you have to find something to be thankful for after putting your hand in the recycling bin and pulling out a dog turd. While all your energy is focused on not killing your wife you have to divert some serious energy to the task of coming up with a reason to feel blessed that you’re holding a dog turd. It’s a great way to keep the focus off the rage and onto no holds barred creativity.
As well as the lovely sunshine I had a major breakthrough with little Chip this morning. It’s looking like he’s finally getting with the program. After his early morning pee & poo I brought him into bed for a cuddle and he managed to sleep peacefully, cuddled into me, without biting anything, annoying any other Beagles or Humans, and without being a general nuisance. He slept for almost 4 hours the little champ. I like to get up early but after a night of creative insomnia I like to go back to bed after the early morning toilet run and just cuddle up under the covers, catching up on my sleep. The Beagles sleeping beside me makes it seem more worthwhile and productive – we’re bonding and creating happy family memories.
If something in your life is making you unhappy change your perspective. Another fantastic Dr Dyer book is “When You Change The Way You Look At Things The Things You Look At Change.” Try it, see if it’s bullshit or a lifechanging epiphany.