A lot of thinkers and leaders like to talk about the ‘flipside’. Peter Sheehan, an Australian, has written a great book called Flip. To flip a problem, an idea, a thought, a story, is a very simple technique to shift a perspective, to see something anew. That can be exciting, groundbreaking, even revolutionary.
A word that’s come to prominence in English around the world is ‘awesome’. It’s used in slang, in motivational speaking, in acknowledgement, and in excitement. If something is awesome it is huge, bigger than big, greater than great.
I was walking the dog along Long Bay in Auckland the other day, and as often happens, I got to thinking and reflecting. I thought doesn’t everybody want to be awesome? To have an awesome life. To be able to say in a heartfelt way, without it being gloss, or a superlative, that life was simply awesome.
And then it clicked. It flipped. I realised that there was a simple, but possibly deceptive key to being awesome and having an awesome life. One simply needs to be ‘in awe’ and that was the point of the word awesome in the first place.
Being in awe is like being a new born child, where the world and every living moment is full of wonder, full of awe. It is somehow acknowledging the world and life itself is something truely magical, that it is infinite with possibility, with beauty, with uniqueness. Being in awe is about being in balance, recognising that we as individuals are one miniscule part of a very much greater whole that is absolutely awesome.
When I stop to think about it, being in awe is the same as being in love. It is being moved by something. There is a sort of humility to it, but not a belittlement. It is about balance, and not an over indulgence in the ego, and at the same time not an indifference.
After flipping awesome and being in awe, I started to think about the law and the lore. Its another place where we need to set a balance. I wrote this story as lore, my ideas thrown together from experience. To write by law, would be to follow a more strict code and formula. Nothing wrong with that, but the two should be in balance; law and lore. It seems to me the modern world is a lot about law, and about intellect, and that has given us some truely magnificent things in the past 150 odd years. We have used law to engineer some incredible man made things. But somewhere the lore about the way we live has become diminished.
Let’s be in awe of lore and law.