In Sweet Company

“… for me, spiritual practice is …  about how I discover and reveal myself as I do things that are ordinary.” — Miriam Polster,  IN SWEET COMPANY: CONVERSATIONS WITH EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN ABOUT LIVING A SPIRITUAL LIFE

Kate and Wills. They look so young. So poised. So glamorous. So … royal. (Not that I’ve known any royalty to compare them with. Not that I’ve known any royalty, period.) I must admit, I have a better feeling about Kate and Wills than I did about Charles and Diana. Kate doesn’t seem as fragile a Diana; Wills seems more comfortable in his own skin than Charles They both seem more present to each other.

That — their ability to be present to each other — may be their saving grace.  It is for a lot of relationships, even those not under constant media scrutiny; especially those where there is a lot of internal or external pressure to be perfect, to perform to a certain standard, to perform in the face of great challenge: marriages, work relationships, sibling rivalries, and your everyday keeping up with the Jones’s kind of thing. Whenever we feel we need to be perfect, for any reason, we become so centered on performance outcomes that we miss the opportunity to enjoy the holiness of the moment, to be there for another, to listen to our Inner Voice, to notice the omnipresence of God, the grace of God, to learn about kindness and humility. To my way of thinking, it’s more important to be present than perfect, to be authentic and sincere than flawless or unparalleled.

Royals may not have that luxury to demonstrate their authenticity and humanity given the standard they are held to and the extent to which they are in the public eye. Maybe that’s what makes us commoners so valuable to them; we show them how to live as authentic human beings in their private moments.

It’s also what makes theatrical royal Catherine Zeta-Jones’ disclosure about being bipolar so important. By choosing to be fully present to herself, in making her imperfections public she helped us all — Royal and commoner alike — understand what is perfect and excellent and good about every present moment.  That she had the courage to do this makes her quite royal in my eyes.

Your thoughts?

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