Lately I have had a few really interesting "light bulb" moments... where something really cool dawns on me and I think, "Wow, what an insight!" But as is often the case when epiphanies hit, we need to reflect on it a little before we can actually "own" the thought or idea. And in the past month, when I have had two kind of cool ones, I have not bothered to dig deeper and really make the thoughts/ideas even more powerful or impacting. But here they are, I share them with you, my friends and family (and anonymous lookers-in).
1) At the start of the month, friends of mine were heading out on their honeymoon. We were talking about their destination, and what their plans were, but then the conversation turned to omiyage. Now, that word gets underlined in red on this computer because it is not English, but for anyone living in Japan, whether they speak the language or not, they know its meaning. Omiyage is like a "souvenir" or something you buy for people back home. Some is bought with joy, some with obligation. It is usually a local delicacy or snack that can be shared with many people. We bring them to our workplaces if we have taken any amount of time off work to go anywhere, for any reason... including business trips!
Anyways, I was thinking, they are already thinking about what they can buy in a land they have never been, to give to people they have not yet "left behind"! Being a guy who was not born into "omiyage culture," I would tend to not even think about buying people snacks at all, and if I did it would be last minute. It's my vacation, my time and my money! And so I was asking myself the question... how preoccupied do we get with obligations, that we do not even enjoy looking ahead to vacations?
And I was also thinking... do we really hope to have our eyes opened on these vacations? Do we want to have our thinking challenged? Do we want to have our worlds changed? Or do we just want a collection of pictures of us with different backgrounds that we can talk about when company comes over for the next six months?
And I was also thinking... do I really look ahead to my future "vacation" in heaven? Am I planning for it? Do I realize that there will be no coming back to this "home" that I live in now? I will not be buying omiyage for anyone, I will not be snapping pictures to show off, I will not be thinking about what stories to tell others when I "get back home"?
And unfortunately, I have not really reached any conclusions about any of these matters. Just a bunch of thoughts filed away in my mind, hoping to find the light of day sometime.
And unfortunately, my bed is calling me, and deep thoughts, part 2, will have to wait until tomorrow or another day when I have my computer opened and a chance to sit and write for a substantial amount of time.