Angela Kelsey

Tell the Story

On Seeing

Filed in Books, Stories, Writing :: November 29, 2011

Last night after I published my post on relationship bokeh, I went to bed and opened John O’Donohue’s Beauty: The Invisible Embrace (recommended, as so many good things are, by Jeanne).

I began to read where I had left off, a section called “To Beautify the Gaze.”  I imagined that O’Donohue had joined me in conversation.  He writes,

“Each of us is responsible for how we see, and how we see determines what we see.  Seeing is not merely a physical act: the heart of vision is shaped by the state of soul.  When the soul is alive to beauty, we begin to see life in a fresh and vital way.  The old habits of seeing are broken.”

Today I refocus consideration of my “old habits of seeing” to include not only the ways I have seen others but also the ways I see myself.  Do I see myself with compassion or am I impatient and judgmental?

O’Donohue concludes this section, “The graced eye can glimpse beauty anywhere, for beauty does not reserve itself for special elite moments or instances; it does not wait for perfection but is present already secretly in everything.  When we beautify our gaze, the grace of hidden beauty becomes our joy and sanctuary.”

What would happen if we held ourselves and others by seeing in this way?


Filed in Books, Stories, Writing

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