The Goodness Diet

Posted by Sooz on Monday, January 30, 2012 | 4 Comments

When was the last time you felt AWE? You know, the feeling you get when the impossibly pink and plum sunset sinks down into the ocean like a lone sunbather slipping in for the last dip of the day…the swell you feel when the sky electrifies with shooting spires of glittering light as the cannon  explodes with colorful Chinese fireworks. What about the sonnet that so completely speaks your own soul in another’s soft and beckoning voice that you are sure your heart has betrayed you to someone else…or the view of the stalwart lighthouse and the taste of the briney Atlantic as the misty saltwater sprays while crashing waves claw at the craggy shore.

There are moments in life that are meant to arrest us, to stop us in our tracks. These moments are there to remind us that there is another side of life. Some days we have to fight, scratch, and claw to just keep going. At times we feel that there is no point, or that it is all too much – then, out of nowhere, a light comes, a song, a smile, a flower. These things beckon us to remember that there is still beauty in the world, that Spring brings hope every year, that people are still good at heart. But if we refuse these moments, if we rush by them and neglect their message, we will miss the gift and our hearts will slowly dry then harden. Before long, we will be immune to the messages, and eventually we will become robotic, navigating through life without much feeling at all.

I saw a story this week that struck me. I want to share it with you. I have taken it directly from a Facebook post by The Raw Note – Wedding Live Band. Please listen to their retelling of this incident, and ponder their message.

“In Washington DC , at a Metro Station, on a cold January morning in 2007, a man with a violin played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time, approximately 2000 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work. After about four minutes, a middle-aged man noticed that there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds, and then he hurried on to meet his schedule. About four minutes later, the violinist received his first dollar. A woman threw money in the hat and, without stopping, continued to walk. At six minutes, a young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again. At ten minutes, a three-year old boy stopped, but his mother tugged him along hurriedly. The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head the whole time. This action was repeated by several other children, but every parent – without exception – forced their children to move on quickly. At forty-five minutes: The musician played continuously. Only six people stopped and listened for a short while. About twenty gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace. The man collected a total of $32. After one hour: He finished playing and silence took over. No one noticed and no one applauded. There was no recognition at all. No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days before, Joshua Bell sold-out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100 each to sit and listen to him play the same music. This is a true story. Joshua Bell, playing incognito in the D.C. Metro Station, was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people’s priorities. This experiment raised several questions: In a common-place environment, at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty? If so, do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context? One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be this: If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made… How many other things are we missing as we rush through life?”

How many things are you missing as you rush through life? To prime the pump and draw up the Goodness that lies in you, you must take very good care of your own heart. You must feed it a steady diet of Beauty, Trueness, Love, and Life-Giving things. This is a simple appeal from someone who believes in you and your potential for Goodness – please take time to feed your soul just like you feed your body. Make regular daily stops to take in something good for your heart. Discover things that make you feel awe and wonder. Seek out things that are beautiful. Read, dance, sing, explore. Let yourself be enchanted with the little wonders all around you. You will be astounded at the way your heart will soften, the way you will feel refreshed, nourished, and hopeful. Your soul is hungry – feed it for Goodness’ sake.

A “Good” Idea:

For three weeks, put yourself on a Goodness diet. Every time you feed your body, also feed your soul. Make a conscious choice to tend your heart and assess the impact on your life/well-being after three weeks.

4 Responses

  1. Emily says:

    I am COVERED in goose bumps. What a lesson.

  2. Nadi Gray says:

    I love this story. Not only does it speak to our perception of beauty but our judgement of people. Can we see the extraordinary value in everyone? Can we? Seriously, can we? Yes we can! I remember many many years ago after I sobered up being completely amazed by how beautiful the clouds were… I would say to friends, “oh my God look at those clouds! Aren’t they beautiful?” They would look at me with the same expression as the people on this train. Yesterday I replaced a windshield that I busted with my kayak. It is amazing how a new window can change the way the world looks. Blessings, Nadi

  3. Teressa says:

    You have a beautiful heart. Thank you for allowing us to peek inside through your posts. If we could all connect in this way, allowing others in to see and share in the goodness hidden behind the many walls. If only.

  4. Cindy Dunn says:

    Wow, it’s a great story and reminder to be on a goodness diet. :D

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