Radical Joy Revealed
March 5, 2014
Dear Friends of Radical Joy for Hard Times,

We are excited to present Radical Joy Revealed, a weekly message of inspiration about finding and making beauty in wounded places. For the first three weeks you'll receive it free every Wednesday. After March 12, it will be sent to subscribers only. We hope you'll enjoy Radical Joy Revealed and that you'll become a regular subscriber!
Thought-tool #3: Gazing Is a Complete Act
Gazing, wounded lot 
Gazing in a vacant lot near Los Angeles. Photo by Noah Crowe
In her upcoming book Trebbe Johnson defines
10 Thought-Tools for Staying Sane and Even Falling in Love with a Challenged Planet. Thought-tool #3: Gazing Is a Complete Act.  


Why would anyone seek out damaged nature to gaze upon? Because it's an intimate and exquisite way to find out: What's going on here? What's going on in me? What's the connection? By going to this place and letting your gaze take in what it is now, you declare that you're not separate from it, even though it's wounded. You affirm that the place is alive both in you and in itself.

To gaze is to look without demanding, simply to absorb what it before the eyes. Laura Sewall, in her book Sight and Sensibility, defines this absorptive way of seeing as "exogenous attention," allowing the sight to receive the whole landscape softly, inclusively, rather than zeroing in on a particular thing.   


Tips for Gazing:
*Look with your imagination, not your intellect.
*Gaze as if something fascinating is about to happen.
*Remember that you don't have to fix anything or receive enlightenment.
*Gaze not as an expert but as a novice sitting at the feet of a great teacher.

To find out about the other 9 Thought-tools and discover inspiring people, stories, photos, and ideas, subscribe to
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Radical Joy Revealed is a weekly message of inspiration about finding and making beauty in the Earth's wounded places. It's an inside look at what radical joy means and how it's made.

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Radical Joy for Hard Times is a global community dedicated to finding and making beauty in wounded places. Reconnecting with these places, sharing our stories of loss and despair, and making acts of beauty there, we transform the land, reconnect people and the places that nourish them, and empower ourselves to make a difference in the way we live on Earth.
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