The Philosophy of Beginnings


Chai tea with soymilk and honey.

This is how I begin every morning.  This “beginning” was born very decisively and has persevered through health and illness, drought and blizzard, morning sickness and toddlers, fasts and distractions. Unlike this tried and true beginning, other beginnings don’t come so naturally.  Most often they are over-researched, over-analyzed, and under-realized ideas that seem to spark and then suddenly vanish, leaving me feeling like I have to look around for whatever shocked me.  They never really begin, these beginnings.

Many months ago, we got a feeling, like a whisper in our ear that said, “Begin.”  But when does a beginning actually begin?  Does it start at the whisper or when the thought finds affirmation? Does it start when you finally buy into the idea and promote it with refinement?  What does action on “begin” look like?  And, have we done it?

Our actions towards beginning look a lot like approaches.  Philosophically, we’ve unknowingly been dabbling in supernaturalism, idealism, rationalism, and a little empiricism.  Overall, it has been a foreign experience trying to manifest this lofty idea full of air into something authentic and tangible.  As Nobel laureate George Bernard Shaw so simply, but eloquently said, “There are two tragedies in life.  One is to lose your heart’s desire.  The other is to gain it.”  Unfortunately the heart does not communicate well with the brain, which would (if it did) expedite the process of logistically determining an action plan.

So, in the time we can find outside of the hamster wheel we’ve so lovingly created for ourselves, we will be taking some form of action.  So let this “beginning” be authentic and directive, even if it sometimes goes slightly askew.  And, like my chai every morning, let this beginning be just as awakening.


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