There’s an elephant here

elephantYou know the story about the 3 blind men and the elephant…one experiences the great creature as a snake, one as a tree, one as a wall…

Rachel Naomi Remen in her “Greater Than the Sum of its Parts” chapter in My Grandfather’s Blessings ponders how it is often difficult to understand the nature of things. She says “there may be an elephant in our midst and all our efforts to analyze our part of it, to describe in greater and greater detail our own experience, the nature of what we have taken hold of, will not help us one iota in knowing what is real. This is true no matter how compelling your experience of your part or how many others are convinced of that experience or even share it with you. The elephant is beyond us all.”

I read this through the lens of a drama I starred in over the past week. I came away reminded that my reality is just one side of a bigger reality. Part of me keeps replaying the video – I think I’ve finally worn out the tape! After all the wrestling and anxiety – that I fully realize I created in my head and made real from the stories I told myself, I have settled on simply moving into what I learned from the experience:

Slow Down.
Be Awake.
Tune In.
Listen Carefully.
Act With Integrity.
Lead With My Heart.
Reach for Grace.

I’m ready to move on.

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7 thoughts on “There’s an elephant here

  1. So true Vicki, there’s always danger lurking when experts drill down and get to know more and more about less and less, until they know everything about nothing. The sum is more than the parts, or 2+2=5! Lovely picture – not to speak of your final affirmation learning points 🙂

  2. I’ve never seen you do anything but act with grace, my friend. But I accept that the journey can be circular at times. 🙂 I think you were fabulous in your drama. And so damn proud of you as well. Period.

  3. This is so true, on so many levels. You stated it so wisely. This reminded me of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s ‘The Little Prince,’ when he draws a picture of a snake that has eaten and elephant. All the adults think the picture is of a hat. It is all in the view from where you are standing at that moment. I know that you have accepted that. Sometimes it takes stepping back to lead with grace. I am sure, whatever the drama, it takes you less time than many to see that the ‘Emperor is naked.’ – Lorian

  4. Pingback: Don’t forget the humanity | This Abundantly Delicious Life

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