Beliefnet
Daily Joys and Simple Pleasures

“Editing. It’s Not Just For Writing.”
I’ve spent much of my writing time since I was 28 trying to get rid of words. Editing down. Paring down. Getting to the core.

I woke up this morning clear on the matter: that is what I am doing with the whole of my life. I see I am less defined by what I have and more represented by what I have passed on and given away. Similarly, I am better understood when what I do not possess, nor have ever held, is observed (in its absence).

The contents of my closet may seem too ordinary to make much fuss about. And yet, “how we do anything is how we do everything,” (said by dozens of sages over the last many hundreds of years that we’ve been taking note of such things). I’ve gone through and sorted and shared the items in my closet at least 7 times in the last year. I’m about to do it again. Each act of diminishing the volume of my clothing manages to enlarge my world view. This shedding of things lets me stand up taller, freer, with less encumbrance.

Editing. It’s for words, things, people, commitments, thoughts, ideas, impulses
and this list is simply a short one.

When I was 25 I had a bumper sticker on my truck that read, “Live Simply that others may simply live.” I’ve been spending/investing the years since that declaration letting my impulse catch up to my actuality. I am still surrounded by abundance and stuff – increasingly each of those things are attributed meaning. I suspect, just like the process of my closet, that many of those items will also, ultimately, find another garden in which to take root. Editing. It’s good for everything.

Join the Discussion
comments powered by Disqus