I am You

Morning Meditation

I’m not sure why but this morning as I ambled through suburbia on my daily meditative stroll, it dawned on me how similar we all are. Outwardly different, inwardly not-so-different. Along the way, I meandered through a busy shopping strip full of frantic shoppers and I strolled by numerous cafes overflowing with the Sunday morning latte and Bircher muesli crowd. I passed a bunch of kids playing football while their vocal parents screamed from the sidelines and I crossed paths with a curious collection of dog owners traversing the urban sprawl while tethered to their much-loved pooches. Some nodding hello, most not. I encountered a swarm of teenage skateboarders moving in unison along the bitumen like a migrating herd of… something. And finally, I passed a guy wearing some big-arse headphones singing woefully out of tune and much louder than I’m sure he realised. He made me smile.  

All in all, a reasonable cross-section of humanity.

Listening Too

As I walked, I listened (through my not-so-big-arse headphones) to people sharing their thoughts, problems, philosophies and theories on talk-back radio. I connected with their passion, conviction, pain and their hope as they explored a range of topics with the host. I contemplated what would make people share their very personal stories in such a public forum. I guess I wasn’t thinking (which can be exhausting) as much as I was pondering (a more relaxing cerebral experience).

Paying Attention

For someone who talks and writes for a job, sometimes I love to do neither. I really enjoy being the quiet, anonymous observer. The watcher. The listener. The passer by. Not to judge or evaluate anything or anyone but simply, to pay attention. As I walked, watched and listened this morning, I experienced what I can only describe as a curious feeling. Like there was some kind of lesson I was meant to learn in the moment. Some insight or wisdom to be gleaned. After a while, the feeling shifted from one of curiosity to one of familiarity. Even though I didn’t know any of the people who crossed my path, for some reason, I felt a level of connection with them. A sense of familiarity. And then it dawned on me.

I do know them.

I know them all. I might not know their name, where they live or what they had for breakfast but I know them. I know them because when I look past all the ‘non-them stuff’ (the skateboards, the clothes, the dog breeds, the physical appearance, the age), they are just like me and I’m just like them. In many ways, we are the same. When the layers are peeled back, what we’re left with is a group of emotional creatures who all want very similar things.

To be wanted, needed, valued, connected, loved, safe and happy.

Not So Different

Yes, there are always exceptions to the rule but when we look beyond the superficial external stuff, the majority of us are not nearly as different as we might like to believe. Even on this site, I receive many comments and emails from people who are surprised (if not, freaked out) by the accuracy with which I can describe their life, their situation, their relationship and even their state of mind without ever meeting them. “Do you have a camera in my house?” I’ve been asked hundreds of times.

Well, I don’t need a camera because I’m just like you. Brave. Scared. Confident. Insecure. Frustrated. Calm. Over-thinking. Not thinking. Happy. Sad. Motivated. De-motivated. Laughing. Crying. Productive. Stagnant. Positive. Negative. You. Me.

Same. :)

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous April 21, 2013 at 6:01 pm

Enjoyed your Sunday morning vicariously and recognise the feeling of familiarity and connection. Lovely piece of writing.

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Michael Brissie April 21, 2013 at 9:00 pm

But you have muscles and I have a belly :( so I doubt we are the same ;)

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Nikki April 21, 2013 at 9:44 pm

Beautiful :-) Love this article, Craig.

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Anonymous April 21, 2013 at 10:21 pm

Thank you Craigo!
You certainly have a way with words…
Exceptional!
xxx

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Virginia April 22, 2013 at 1:24 am

Really enjoyed reading the blog today. We all do need love and security!

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Sharon April 22, 2013 at 1:39 am

The guy with the headphones made me smile too. Same same :)

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sweetpea April 22, 2013 at 5:48 am

Nope… I am sure you are much taller

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Sharon Clark April 22, 2013 at 7:19 am

Love it! I concur with every word & sentiment. There is much to be learned ‘ being in the moment ‘ just to be & observe’ :) I love the serenity of inner silence, which I get to experience a lot of the time. Sometimes we are so busy with just going thru the motions in life, just surviving & doing what’s in front of us that we don’t pay attention to the now & feel the connection with those around us :) we are one, If more folk got that, we would experience & powerful shift in this world, at least more people are becoming aware of higher self & we can only hope with understanding comes tolerance :) ” be the difference you’d like to see! :) )” thank you for sharing as always….. Much love, Grasshopper :) xx

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kell April 22, 2013 at 7:43 am

really liked this article …… thanks as always you have us thinking outside the square.

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Anonymous April 22, 2013 at 9:16 am

We are similar in many ways. However, I am an individual and am grateful that there is not another one like me!

Sue

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Matthew April 22, 2013 at 1:04 pm

The ‘Paying attention’ paragraph really related to me, I’m definitely the observer/listening type of person, and I’m happy being like that. I think we have a stereotype out there that if you’re not an extrovert jumping around and preaching to everyone, that you’re not a confident or happy individual.

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Trish B April 22, 2013 at 4:21 pm

Full marks from the former English teacher! Nice one.

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Blossom April 22, 2013 at 8:07 pm

So if we are all the same then I am not crazy? Or maybe we all are just a little bit:) And that’s o.k.!

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Rachel Hannam April 22, 2013 at 10:00 pm

Have you been reading Eckhart Tolle again Craig :-)

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Charlene April 22, 2013 at 11:03 pm

WOW Craig!! Love this, you hit the nail right on the head…and Sharon Clark, you followed him right up!! Wonderful words of wisdom!! We should all be happy to know that we are all one and the same on the inside, God did that for a reason…i assume so that non would feel any less of a man/woman than the next..

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Desiree April 23, 2013 at 1:54 am

Yes! This Planet we call Earth is just a big old 3 dimensional school for all us Humans who by nature are emotional & basically insecure. Driven to feel & be all those things You described Craig. But if we did not feel all those feelings, how would we know Compassion, – Humanity, Kindness for our fellow human being. Maybe if KINDNESS without Conditions were the main Religion in the world, there would be no need for Competition. Because then perhaps there would be Peace!

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Lisa May 8, 2013 at 11:32 pm

Hi Harps,
missed you and Jane on ‘Grandstanders’. Jesus said:this is my greatest commandment given for you and for many; Love one another as I have loved you.
Love, not observe, nor conceptualise, nor philosophise. It is to engage and treat each and all as kin. Love is an action and it needs you to be fit,in mind, body and SOUL. Where is your spiritual gym and how is your attendance looking? God needs us to be rounded to practice kindness.

The one you can trust knows you by name is calling l ..I’m not sure why but this morning as I ambled through suburbia on my daily meditative stroll……. Be kind to yourself take that leap again!
In the end …..only kindness matters-Jewel

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Lisa Simpson May 9, 2013 at 11:39 pm

If your busy i recommend The Mindful Brain CD set The neurobiology of Wellbeing by Daniel J Siegel MD just the right mix of meditation for developing the mind and science of the brain. intriguing and empowering. I borrowed my copy from the library.

It contained this quote which made me think about your stroll of enlightenment.
Einstein: Optical Delusion of Consciousness
Albert Einstein – (1879-1955)

“A human being is a part of the whole, called by us, “Universe,” a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest — a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness.

This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.

Nobody is able to achieve this completely, but the striving for such achievement is in itself a part of the liberation and a foundation for inner security.”

enjoy!

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Signage Retail Design June 18, 2013 at 12:45 pm

We are same build as human but we have our our own personalities and I am comfortable to be me.

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Lisa Simpson June 23, 2013 at 10:10 pm

Hi Craig,
Hope you are seriously engaged is your Spiritual gym program intentionaly stabilizing the tripod of your mind, it lets ‘you smell the roses ‘ without letting past encounters effect the experience.

I was listening to an old favorite CD by Sinaed O’connor – “Throw down your arms”,it has a Rasta’-reggae influence. I noticed a warning sticker ‘Moderate impact coarse language and/or themes’, you came to mind…….it also has a song about a young jamaican boy called ‘Curly locks’. I suggest getting the song or maybe the album on the playlist featured on the grandstanders.

wishing loving kindness to you and your kin (especially Jane!)

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