ZenView – Inspiration


ZenView
By Mary Layton
Inspiration

An inspiration is something mysterious and magical. The word comes from the Latin words “inspirare”, which means inflame or blow into, and “spiritus” which means breath, soul or spirit. Put together inspiration is taking ‘a breath from above’. A Persian Sufi master once described inspiration as an “idea from God” and as something we cannot grasp with the mind. An inspiration may come to us as a sudden, unexpected original idea, seemingly out of nowhere, without explanation. May be we have been up against a problem, preoccupied with finding a solution and suddenly, in a flash, it all comes together, a completely new idea and the decision what has to be done next. We laugh how easy everything suddenly is. Then there is the kind of inspiration that comes to us through others or through perceiving something that touches our feelings and stimulates our mind to generate an unusual activity or creativity. Unusual acts of love and kindness can inspire us to change the way we think forever.

We are inspired when people reach their goals and dreams, especially when at first all the odds were stacked against them. Good teachers inspire their students to go beyond their perceived limits. One way or the other we all continuously inspire each other with our energy, patience, courage and hard work.

We will always be inspired by nature. According to legend a Taoist monk who was watching the fight between a bird and a snake was so inspired by the strategy, gracefulness and timing of both animals that he created T’ai Chi Ch’uan, the great Chinese martial art. Music, and the arts, as well as all kinds of inventions and innovations in the sciences are inspired by nature. Sometimes inspiration can be very simple. When I come home after a long and busy day and see my cats lying on the couch I am inspired to take a catnap myself.

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