Posted Saturday, March 5, 2005, 11:29 AM
I’m reading a book on writing by Anne Lamott and came across this really great sentence.
“To be engrossed by something outside ourselves is a powerful antidote for the rational mind, the mind that so frequently has its head up its own ass–seeing things in such a narrow and darkly narcissistic way that it presents a colo-rectal theology, offering hope to no one.”
She’s right. Sometimes the best cure for being so stuck in your own world you can’t see past your own nose, is to look to something outside your self and observe it. It can be as simple as watching a bird fly though the air and land on a telephone wire, or going and volunteering at a food kitchen in the city, or even as mundane as watching a little league baseball game where you know none of the players.
Stepping outside one’s self is the first key to writing well, but it is also the key to living life in a meaningful way. If we can observe the world around us, and listen to it’s lessons without thinking we are too learned for them, we might learn something about how much we really know.