I just happened to be here

Turning up and doing what we do is the beginning of everything that turns out to matter.

Brian McLaren describes this beginning in three words: Here!  Now!  O!*

If we turn up doing the things we do best, maybe something wonderful will ensue.

Ken Mogi reflects on the accidental production of the beautiful yohen tenmoku bowls:

‘The beauty of the starry bowls is so sublime precisely because these items were produced out of unconscious endeavour.’*

I understand what Mogi is getting at.  The people who made these bowls couldn’t point to them and say, I knew what I was doing when I made that.” People are still trying to replicate the results.  But these crafts-people turned up every day doing what they do best.

Sometimes happy accidents happen.  But they happen because we turn up giving our best:

‘Being in the flow is all about treasuring the being in the here and now.’**

Richard Sennett “adds” an interesting point – the callus is the symbol of turning up:

‘By protecting the nerve endings in the hand, the callus makes the art of probing less hesitant […] the callus both sensitises the hand to minute physical spaces and stimulates the sensation at the fingertips.’^

Turning up and doing our work provides us with calluses, the possibility of doing finer work more deeply, opening us to the complex and perplexing – the latter being the challenge in life we must respond to.

(*From Brian McLaren’s Naked Spirituality.)
(**Fom Ken Mogi’s The Little Book of Ikigai.)
(^From Richard Sennet’s The Craftsman.)

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