January 13 – Why We Need Each Other – Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening

“A blind child guided by his mother, admires the cherry blossoms.” Kikakou

Who knows what a blind child sees of blossoms or songbirds? Who knows what any of us sees from the privacy of our own blindness – and, make no mistake, each of us is blind in a particular way, just as each of us is sighted uniquely.

Consider how each of us is blinded by what we fear.  If we fear heights, we are blind to the humility vast perspectives bring. If we fear spiders, we are blind to the splendour and danger of webs. If we fear small spaces, we are blind to the secrets of sudden solitude. If we fear passion, we are blind to the comfort of Oneness. If we fear change, we are blind to the abundance of life. If we fear death, we are blind to the mystery of the unknown. And since to fear something is thoroughly human, to be blind is unavoidable. It is what each of us must struggle to overcome.

With this in mind, Kikakou’s little poem serves as an internal parable. For, in the course of our lives, we all stumble and struggle, repeatedly, in and out of relationship, and in and out of grace of the hidden wholeness of life. It is, in part, why we need each other. For often our relationships help us experience the Oneness of things. We do this, in the course of our lives, by taking turns being the blind child, the loving guide and the unsuspecting blossom – never knowing which we are called to be until we’ve learned what we are to learn.

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