Evaluations of Shine
This morning brings an immersion experience into The Absolute Value of Mike by Kathryn Erskine (narrated by Noah Galvin). My son and I are listening to the story while he mills around in his Legos. The story unfolds as an allegory of the inadvertent discovery of self-worth. I think about how each of us has this struggle towards self-worth. So often when we consider our worth head-on, we believe we are falling short. Whether this occurs as an artifact of parental expectations or due to the crush of cultural pressures, the result is the same: we are deceived. Our worth or importance is not so easily evaluated. Yes, what we have done for our friends, family, community, country, and world matter. Those externals are truly important, but those external efforts are not the seat of our significance. Our significance is a divine sign—a miracle—of the existence of our unique soul in the world. Our spirit came here to have the physical experience of life, so yes, we need to participate in the world. And yes, all our activities and contributions are part of our sacred path in this world. But the reason we incarnated in this body and this life was not to be "valuable" to the world, not even to be "useful," we are here to dance chaotic to the shrill call of love, piercing the dark cloth of existence.