Striving for Mastery
In her recent book, Wildscape, Nancy Lawson quotes Diane Ackerman from the book, A Natural History of the Senses. “Mastery is what we strive for, but once we have it we lose the precarious super-awareness of the amateur.”
I am great at striving for mastery, but even before I have it, it’s easy to lose that super-awareness. Most of us have long since mastered the arts of walking, running, driving a car, reading—so many things. And along the way, we’ve lost awareness of so many things. In many respects, this lost awareness is practical. Paying close attention to every letter of every word on the page, not to mention the color of the paper, the color and style of the font, etc., would make for very slow reading. If we have to pay attention to every minute detail of walking or driving, we won’t get very far or very quickly.
But it might be nice to slow down more often and notice some of the beautiful details of our world. Nancy Lawson, the Humane Gardener, describes in Wildscape her first experience of witnessing frass flicking. It’s what some caterpillars do with their poop. Who knew? She also observed a butterfly poking its proboscis into a dried leaf. What? Don’t they just go for nectar? It turns out there’s a chemical in the dried leaves that offers some protective benefits. So many overlooked wonders.
It’s still quite hot here in Texas, so it makes sense to consider slowing down—way down. Perhaps it would make sense to do it even when the weather cools off, at least every now and then.
What have you been missing lately? What might you like to slow down for? Whatever it is, I hope you find some delightful surprises along the way. And, then, when you speed up again, I hope the going is easier and smoother.
If you’d like an opportunity to pay attention to yourself and your movements, please consider joining me for our Tuesday online Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement lesson. It’s free/pay as you wish.
If you’re more interested in private sessions, you can Book an Appointment or reply to this email.
Please mark your calendars for Saturday afternoon, October 28. I’ll be doing a mini Feldenkrais retreat at the Jung Center of Houston. More details to follow soon.
Have all the fun you can—at whatever speed.