More than once I was waiting for myself as I summated a mountain’s top,
standing on the path yet out of my own way,
so that if I had not been looking for myself I wouldn’t have been there to see.
Long ago I stopped looking for myself in the mirror.
I knew that was but the surface’s reflection of my truth,
not anything to build a life on.
For it had no knowledge in it past what I already knew.
Instead I looked for my reflection in others.
Large and small I wanted to see myself in them.
To find where we already agree.
I saw myself in the waves,
at times violent and cruel marching unstoppably toward the shore,
other times barley a ripple caressing the sand and reflecting the sunset.
I heard myself in the wind,
mounting and moving across vast spaces to tickle the forest or make them tremble and bend,
lifting the birds aloft to see all of creation slipping away below.
I felt myself in the trees,
roots twisting in to nourish and hold fast,
branches reaching out for the sun- thirsty for heaven.
I have smelled the coming rain.
Washing away the past, to leave the ground ready for its next lesson.
I have found so much of myself outside of me and I am grateful to my many teachers for showing me what I should be.
Exemplifying what I could become if I had the awareness to see myself in them.
Not apart, looking into or down on, but a part of.
One and the same. How much I could learn from that?
Everyone sees themselves staring back out of the mirror and many judge their progress by the ability to look upon one’s own reflection.
I have found that it is more productive to cultivate the skill of looking at others and being able to find yourself staring back there.
For I find that we can hide what we do not like about ourselves in mirrors, and quite often this is expressly what we use them for.
It is in acknowledging the things we dislike in others that we truly find what we need to improve in ourselves.
In doing so we open a dialogue with our soul so that we may give productive language to our discontent and find a way to improve everything around us.