I wrote about wabi-sabi, how it can help you look at your day-to-day life differently and put you at ease.
You might ask: what good is a concept that reminds you things shrivel, break or die?
It’s quite good, actually.
Here’s an example from my own life.
See the painting above? We saw it hanging in a gallery one summer vacation and were smitten. However, we left without buying it. After all, we were only there to look. But we couldn’t stop talking about it, so we returned to the gallery for one last look and that was that. The painting became ours.
That was 2004, around the same time a powerful tsunami hit the Indian ocean. Remember? Heart breaking stories were all over the news. I remember turning away from a newspaper article, looking up at the new painting now hanging on our wall and thinking it could get destroyed in a fire, flood, or some other unfortunate event. Oddly enough the thought wasn’t troubling. In fact, it put me at ease.
By imagining the painting damaged or gone it suddenly became more precious. It wasn’t about giving myself permission to treat the painting with carelessness or neglect. It was accepting the painting could (will?) one day be gone AND appreciating it, all at once.
That’s what a wabi-sabi perspective offers. Appreciation without the panic.
Exhibition kitchen/The Rockpool experience by Elaine Coffee