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Hey friends,

In the last edition of the newsletter, I asked you about 2020, and how you internalized the year. I got so many wonderful responses, and replied to each one. I want to remind you that this newsletter isn’t merely a broadcast to an audience, but more of an invitation to engage in dialogue. So if you ever feel compelled to write in, know that my inbox is open.

On my end, I’ve been deep in creative mode, working on a 6,000+ word post on the topic of the self. It’s my attempt to combine what I’ve learned about child development, behaviorism, and Buddhism to create a coherent model of the sense of self. It’s no easy feat, but I’m excited to share the result with you. The post will be ready to go some time this month.

For today, I have a short post to share, and it’s on the topic of boredom. We are all familiar with its presence, but I want to delve a bit deeper into what boredom is, and how our relationship with it shapes our desires.

In a world where boredom is alleviated at a moment’s notice, let’s explore the importance of sitting with it and internalizing it in a fruitful manner:
A Book I've Been Enjoying

The Wisdom of Insecurity by Alan Watts — I'm revisiting this classic because it's only growing more relevant over time. Watts argues that anxiety results from an attachment to the future, and from the desire for stability in a fundamentally unstable world. In today's polarized climate, we often use certainty as a surrogate for stability, but this only leads to stubbornness and a breakdown in civil discourse.
An Illustrated Insight

When you fight off boredom with books, this tends to happen:

A Thought I've Been Pondering

Meaning is not assigned to any of us. We are not born with an inherent purpose, or a mission that we are uniquely responsible to fulfill.

Rather, we derive meaning from conducting an honest audit of our interests, and directing our sense of agency toward them. If you work on the things that matter, spend time with people you love, and help make the world a better place, then you no longer have to search for meaning, for you already have it.
A Brief Parting Question

How comfortable are you with idleness? Is it something that recharges you, or does it make you restless?

I enjoy idleness now, but it wasn’t always that way. In my younger years, I always wanted to be occupied with some gathering or event that kept me busy. But now, the idea of sitting alone with a book or with my thoughts sounds wonderfully enticing.

I wonder if this naturally happens with age, or if there’s something else going on. Curious to hear your experience with this.
As always, hit reply to share any thoughts, to respond to the parting question, or to simply say hello. I love hearing from you.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the rest of your week!


P.S. Thanks to Amy, Hugo, and Paula for adding your support on Patreon! Become a part of the patron community and get access to monthly reflections, exclusive posts, and more.
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