When my Bubbles of Happiness website was being redesigned, the ‘About me’ section was created. I daringly wrote that I am an everyday philosopher, knowing that philosophy means ‘love of wisdom’.
But then I started to get the uncomfortable feeling that I was an impostor, as in Germany philosophy is not a subject taught in school. I have read a lot of books about it but I’ve never had a teacher.
At a dinner party I was introduced to Patrick, a philosopher! I plucked up courage and asked him if he could give me lessons. But time and distance were against us.
Every week Patrick leaves a comment on my article of the day. He takes the thread of my story and adds an explanation from his experience as a GP, a psychoanalyst and a philosopher. In this way he explains the reasoning underlying my remarks.
I could never have imagined a better way of learning about the great philosophers. It’s a very practical approach, a truly ‘applied’ way of working.
What about you? Who takes care of your education in an innovative way?
Murphy’s Law did its worst for Sandrine that day: a puncture on the way to work, an unhappy customer, a colleague being horrible, the boss 45 minutes late for the meeting, the computer crashing. Sandrine was torn between anger, exasperation and wanting to burst into tears.
A colleague offered to give her a lift home and was invited in for a drink.
As they walked across the garden, Sandrine stopped in front of a tree, placed both hands on the trunk, leaned forward, and took a deep breath. Then and only then did she go and open the door.
To her colleague’s surprise, the miserable Sandrine was now radiant. She was playing with her children and kissing her husband and seemed very cheerful and happy.
Sandrine explained, “When I come home at night, I leave my worries at the foot of my magic tree. I ask it to look after them for me so I can give my family my full attention.
In the morning I go to get them back, but the magic tree has made most of my worries disappear during the night!”
What about you? Where could you leave your worries so they don’t worm their way into other aspects of your life where they have no right to be?
Two mice came upon a pot of cream on a
farm. They jumped into it to fill up their hungry little tummies. When they had
eaten their fill, they realised they couldn’t get out. The sides were slippery
and their feet didn’t reach the bottom either.
The pessimist swam around and after a while
said, “It’s no use. I can’t keep going. I’m giving up.” And she sank to the
The optimist was not prepared to give
in. She kept swimming despite her
exhaustion and believed her luck would turn… and indeed she soon felt that it
had, as her little bottom was sitting solidly on a mound of butter!
What about you? Do you give up or do you
pursue your goals all the way?
A young woman goes to see a wise old woman to ask her how to cope with sadness, solitude and her own lack of commitment.
The wise old woman points to magnificent forest of bamboo. “When I came here, there was nothing but dry earth. All I had was some bamboo seeds and some fern seeds, so I sowed them and watered them carefully.
The ferns soon started to come up, but there was no sign of any bamboo. The next year the fern was out in force but still no bamboo. And it went on like that until the fifth year when – to my great surprise – bamboo shoots sprang up among the ferns!
Look at this forest! For all those years the bamboo was strengthening its roots in preparation for growing upwards! Perhaps you are not lost, you’re just busy strengthening your roots?”
And you, what are you busy strengthening so you can go further?