Monday Musings Thirty-four: Be the First

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Be the First


Any spiritual practice worth its salt will advise us to choose the path of humility. Why, then, have I entitled today’s musing ‘Be the First’?

It is more than possible to take the lead without taking control. The way in which we do this is important. If arrogance sneaks in, then no matter how good our intentions, all people will see is our attitude.

And what is it in which we’re taking the lead? Do we take the lead in apologising? In forgiving? In forgetting? Or rather in blaming and getting our own way?

Bravest is the first to apologise.Zen Stones for Monday Musings

Strongest is the first to forgive.

Happiest is the first to forget.

Whether you’re the type of personality to always be at the forefront or the one lagging behind and hiding at the back, you have some work to do. This is because either of these positions stands at an extreme. The key lies in being the first from the middle. As mentioned in Monday Musings thirty-three, you can only find peace from the middle ground.

Right on the heels of this is not judging or comparing but just seeing things as they are. Each and every one of us holds an opinion and likes and dislikes. They don’t matter. We don’t have to bend to another’s will, and nor do they need to bend to ours.

Any one phase of the moon isn’t any better or worse than another. Concrete isn’t any better or worse than porridge, and all we need to do is recognise the difference so that the right one ends up in our breakfast bowl. We don’t need to put a judgment on it. Wise discernment, not comparison. From here, both have equal value regardless of their different purposes.

So, whenever you find yourself stuck in set ways and opinions, try and soften a little. Practice being the first to move. Be like water, which always finds a way. Flow through life and go around obstacles rather than hitting them head on or damming up.

In the wise words of Zen:


‘You don’t have to agree on anything to be kind to one another.’

If you’ve missed my previous Monday Musings, you can find the links here: :)