I was browsing last night in a vintage store, which I always enjoy. I came upon several U-shaped magnets, the old fashioned kind that we used in school long ago. My grandfather gave me several of different sizes when I was about 6 years old and I enjoyed many, many hours seeing what they would attract and repel and which ones were the strongest. Sometimes I had to use both hands to pull them apart because the attraction was so strong. These memories brought a smile to my face and innards and I found myself experimenting once again with the magnets in the store. Fun!
Then on the way home, quite serendipitously, I was listening to an article about attraction, which nudged me to think about that word “attraction” in some new ways. I thought about those magnets and the different things that they were and were not attracted to, and also how strong the pull seemed to be with certain materials.
This got me to thinking about things that I am attracted to and how strong the pull seems to be at times. Some of those things have been good or interesting or brought needed learning or beauty…like the pull of the ocean, mountains, trees, music, deep conversation, bright colors, whimsical furniture, new technology, etc. Other attractions have not been so good and have also been harder to resist, to pull myself from. I found myself deciding that I wanted to be more aware of what attracted my attention, thoughts and actions and make choices…to know that I have choices and not let so-called human nature or non-thinking lead me.
I have certainly thought about this topic before, as one of my favorite mindful precepts has to do with mindful consumption – what we take into our thoughts and our bodies. But these current thoughts about attraction and having played with these magnets were giving me a bit of a different perspective, a more hands on view. Thoughts were coming to me in a concrete way such as, …” What are the things I am attracted to AND what choices do I make about them? How often do I find myself doing something and then realize it isn’t something that will bring about goodness, freshness or peace? Or when I watch a TV show or am reading a magazine, is it because I have made a conscious choice to do so for reasons that I am feel content about? Is the activity or conversation taking my thought in a direction I want to go? Or is it leading me to think about things that are unimportant, divisive, violent, or uncomfortable?” I even thought about conversations I have had where I felt pulled without much awareness to talk about another in a way that was less than kind or in a tone that wasn’t how I wanted to portray myself or align with my true nature.
after thought: I imagine that most of us have these types of conversations and musings with ourselves often, and that they lead us on to big and better ways to live our lives. I realize just how much I love pondering ideas and looking for the many lessons this Universe continually has in front of me (all of us) of which to partake. I am so grateful that these magnets spoke to me tonight …and that I listened.
Tien Stone Langlois, Scholars Together Learning Community, Inc.