The Beautiful Way

I am a dreamer and as a visionary, my end point is crystal-clear. It burns in the front of my brain like a movie, always tantalizingly close. But then life has obvious challenges. My vision is still picture-perfect but the world around me ripples, bends, buckles and creaks under every changing series of imperfections, twists, turns, setbacks and disappointments. It is like the world in my head is in colour and the world around me is black, white and red.

As a dreamer I often think my destination is a moment away and within arm’s reach. Because it is so clear, I imagine it being easy to arrive at. However, in reality it would seem dreams are reached through tiny, deliberate steps forward. And this is the beautiful way; the moment-by-moment decision to accept the process and pain and pursue the dream despite the walls crumbling around us.

As modern humans, we have lost touch with process. It has faded from our memories like a children's fable. But our grandparents understood process; they understood that plants come from seeds and lettuce takes months to grow. They knew that bread comes from flour, water, and yeast. That it takes time to rise and bake, and tastes best just out of the oven with only butter on. They understood that fruit comes from trees, and so they planted orchards wherever they went. They got the fact that stuff doesn’t come from a microwave, convenience store, Google voice-activation, Takealot or MR D. They understood process because they had to; it was a part of their life.

But us, poor, poor us, we have forgotten the beautiful way. It is as much a mystery or myth to us as Jesus, Father Christmas or the Easter Bunny… But here is the thing: process hasn’t forgotten us. Some stuff you just can’t microwave. You can’t microwave learning, authenticity, wisdom, impact or legacy. Sure, you can fake it, but you can’t make it. Those things only come through process and that process is built into the fabric of our world, our ecology, our human bodies, brains and communities. Some stuff just takes time.

For me the beautiful way is re-learning or yielding to life. Learning to let go of my misguided view of time, life and the way things should be and beginning to fall in line with trees, plants, animals and seasons around us that celebrate the rhythm of life in the processes they follow.