I was blind all the time I was learning to see ...
— The Grateful Dead, 'Help on the Way', 1975

Finding Perspective

I created my first personal website in the late 1990's. There I collected a few thoughts of value that I had written up to that time. Over the years I updated and expanded the collection as the whim struck me, but what was the thread that tied them together? Was there a conclusion that I was trying to reach or a larger point that I was trying to make?

The Point

When I was young I was infatuated with the complexity of my life. I believed that I was doing something unique, and tried to capture what was so exceptional about it. The harder I tried the more I had to admit that, while I had a few interesting experiences, I was nowhere close to breaking new ground. I gave up in disappointment.

Then I got a little older and gained some additional perspective. This led me to fix on the notion that I was in tune with the larger set of archetypes that underpin the world around us, and I tried to frame my journey as some kind of Epic Quest. When I tried to put that journey onto the page I was forced to admit that I was no Ulysses and my journey was no Odyssey. I gave up again.

Finally, older and less impressed with myself, I accepted that my life was rather ordinary. My precious illuminated moments were no more expansive than anyone else's. At the same time, there is something exceptional that all of us experience — the realization of what it means to be alive.

The particulars of my life were uniquely mine, but the mechanics were common to us all.