In Awe of the Lore

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.

No Separation

When we separate things, they change dramatically. An egg white separated from a yolk, and whipped is so completely different from an egg white and yolk intact that you would never associate the two.

As human beings we have become expert at separating things. We separate ourselves from others, break connections. We separate our heartfelt feelings from our intellect. We separate ourselves from the land and sea.

In the western world, we have sensed for a long time that these separations are not healthy, and yet we remain addicted to them. These sepaations are responsible for our ill health, mentally and physically.

There are still models alive today from indigenous peoples such as Maori in Aotearoa/New Zealand that look at people and the world without separation. Sadly, many Maori have fallen ill due to adapting the separations of the modern world. But at the heart of their culture, and reviving slowly but surely is the concept that human kind and this planet are not separate at all, and are intrinsically linked as one whole living breathing entity. We know science can now prove this too.
The first people of America shared a similar belief system.

I love to think of the Maori word, whenua. And to call this broad and deep concept simply a word, does not seem to do it justice. Whenua is the name for the placenta, that feeds an unborn child. It is also the name for land, which feeds us all as infants, children and adults.

There was no separation between whenua the placenta, and whenua the land.

We have many beautiful concepts such as this at our fingertips, we just have to breathe, live and believe them, connected.