Monday, July 30, 2012

Olympic Smile

Good Morning World. I’ve spent the last couple of days watching Olympic coverage. I plan to do the same today with maybe a little painting. 

Vietnamese Buddhist monk and peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh wrote, “The source of a true smile is an awakened mind. Over the weekend I shared this quote with a great love in my life, Vero. In telling her this, I realized the answer to my ‘life’s’ slump is in these words. If you sit and think about them, there’s more to them than meets the eye. There’s more to them than meets a smile. The message behind his words is beautiful, insightful and powerful. When we share a smile with another, for a moment in life, our spirits connect in present time. It's magical. 

Many years ago while in a school cafeteria, a woman told me, “Smile kid it’s not that bad.” She smiled as she said this to me; I smiled back. I’ve never forgotten this moment. It’s reminded me about how important a smile can be. Back in college, I used to imagine my smile traveling across the world. A sort of ‘pay it forward’ idea before I even knew of this concept. I often wondered where a smile ended or if it even did. Every time I smile this woman’s spirit is in my smile. It’s a beautiful thing; it’s like her spirit will never die. I’d like to think that my own spirit would also be in another’s smile for years or centuries to come. Even in writing this, I wonder who’s spirits' past are part of my life today. Could it be everyone!? 

And since I’m thinking about how far my ‘self’ will travel, the piece here is a self-portrait. For now, it’s untitled. As I watch the Olympics today, I will work on a couple of these self-portraits. 

If the Olypmic Games can bring unity amongst nations, can a simple smile do just as much? I think it can.

Smile, Cheese, Queso! 

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