As the Velveteen Rabbit awaits his heartbreaking fate in a sack at the end of the garden, drowned in wistful reminiscence about all the joyful moments he and the little boy shared over the years, one very real tear rolls down his cheek and drops to the ground.
“Why should it all end like this for someone who had been loved so much and become Real?”
And then something magical happens- a flower emerges from the ground where the tear had fallen, and it blossoms to reveal the beautiful nursery fairy, who takes care of the most beloved toys after their children outgrow them.
With one kiss on the nose, the fairy transforms the Velveteen Rabbit into a Real rabbit- real not only to the boy who loved him, but real to the world, to all who judge the realness of others.
The seasons turn and when spring arrives again, the little boy treks back into the woods, where he has a strange and wonderful encounter with a wild rabbit that looks remarkably like his beloved lost toy. The rabbit looks at the boy, and the boy at the rabbit, they are elevated in a quiet moment of recognition- the mutual beholding of another’s realness of which all love is made.
how we make wise choices may be directly related to how we notice closed and open and how we sort ourselves out…..
inquiry for today~ whose voice do you listen to when you respond? what is wise in your world?
A hungry heart is a tender heart. And tenderness contains a certain element of sadness. Chogyam Trungpa taught the Buddhist practice of bodhicitta, or awakened heart. His own term for awakened heart was “the genuine heart of sadness,” which he explained as a natural and beautiful condition, the result of staying open to the full experience of life. Thought the practice of bodhicitta, “we can learn to be without deception, to be fully genuine and alive,” he wrote in his classic book, The Sacred Path of the Warrior.
Sadness, in this context, is not the opposite of happiness. the opposite of happiness is a closed heart. Happiness is a heart so soft and so expensive that it can hold all of the emotions in a cradle of openness. A happy heart is one that is larger at all times than any one emotion. An open heart feels everything- including anger, grief, and pain- and absorbs it into a bigger and wiser experience of reality. Joseph Campbell calls happiness the “joyful participation in the sorrows of the world.”
This is not a quick and easy journey for most people. Our defenses are in place for reasons that made a lot of sense in childhood. That’s why we often have to go back into our pasts to retrieve our authentic ability to feel.