At Home in Joy:
I was sitting with a group of Bosnian men in the neighborhood, hanging out at the end of a day. They gather like they would in their native country for a casual afternoon among friends at the sidewalk café. All are friends who met here after being refugees from their country 30 plus years ago.
Though I participated, I was happy to simply watch their passion as several entertaining conversations were going on at once. One of them was what they loved about this country. The freedom, not letting their different beliefs or cultures get in the way of their friendships—Muslim, Orthodox, Christian—it didn’t matter. They loved each other.
Some work. Some don’t. For all, their purpose is clearly to enjoy life, to enjoy each other, to pass the time in each other’s company, and they will tell you so.
I am inspired by the resilience of the human spirit to return to joy. It is that feeling inside you that says, you’re “home” and it’s lightness seems to defy the strength and perseverance it may have taken for you feel at ease living there, in your own skin, in your own epically joyful life.
Einstein said, “if you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” In other words, you have synthesized a ton of knowledge to be able to explain something simply, clearly, and profoundly.
Joy is similar. It is simple. Not simplistic. It is a complexity of experience all your own, synthesized through your unique emotions and perspective. Though we are all having a similar experience, learning similar lessons, you are the only one having it in your particular way. Your synthesis of your experience into joy contributes to the texture of joy we all get to feel.
Like white is a combination of all the colors, joy is the synthesis of all your emotions and feelings. Not the absence. It is a synthesis of everything you have experienced, all the emotions that needed to move through you, leading you home.
Joy is a constant, like a homing signal within, guiding you home from wherever you are, wherever you’ve been. It collects all of your knowledge and experience into this preciously simple feeling. It may take an epic journey, even leaving your country, to find your way back to that place inside you and around you that is joy. It will guide you far beyond what you thought you were capable of to live in a space that seems so simple. And it is the reward for your epic journey to yourself.
Here’s to more of You in this world,