{mixed-up monday}: flash of genius

on 11-26-2012


I should be wearing an “I Survived the Stomach Bug of 2012” t-shirt. Whatever it was that swooped in to wreak havoc in our house last week, it didn’t leave before making sure we were on a first name basis.


The good news? When I finally dove in and surrendered to my sweaty nap/ stomach churning/ thoughts swirling groove, I had more epiphanies than I have since . . . well, since the last time I was sick.   I guess sometimes I need to be knocked down to give  flashes of genius a distraction-free chance to light me up.


In the midst of those 48  “why-did-I-have to-eat-all-those-brussel-sprouts-on-the-eve-of-destruction” hours,  I was forced to think about some challenges that have been swimming beneath the surface for some time — maybe not forced, but left alone with my thoughts so there was noplace left to hide.


Poet/ philosopher Mark Nepo writes about the original meaning of “genius” in THE BOOK OF AWAKENING, saying it was not defined as off-the-charts brilliance and ability, but an “attendant spirit — being in the care of something unseen but near. . . . another way of acknowledging the unseeable stream we all swim in.”


The offensive player in me likes Nepo’s take on adversity — not that we should seek out troubled times {or stomach viruses} to summon moments of genius, but that by “looking for the openings” when we’re “broken by experience, we can find our connection to the unseeable stream we often forget we’re a part of.”


I find an energizing comfort in that and know that summoning these words from Nepo will help me be less resistant to all the unknowns of change/ stress/ fear/ uncertainty:

“Perhaps the purpose in crisis, if there is one,

is not to break us as much as to break us open.”



Click on this image for a colorful “flash of genius” playlist.

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