The Common Thread
And a powerful question.
Homa Sensi had an interesting way of describing his experience of building his Aikido dojo - Nippon Kan. It began as a single thread: himself. As he attracted students each of them became threads that wove themselves around the vision of his central thread. Over time, more and more threads began to weave themselves into his dojo, interacting with and influencing each other. And so a cord was formed. Then a rope. Some of the threads that joined into the rope's weave were short. Others, like mine, spanned 25 years or more. Some ended, like mine, with a decision to leave. Others ended with their departure from life.
I think often of Sensi's imagery. Particularly now, as I'm poised to start a new career. I am a single thread. What value can I offer that will attract others to come together and begin to weave a stronger rope for themselves? This is the kind of question that permeates each moment. It is both a short-term and a long-term question. It is an open question. A dynamic question that is answered in each of these moments. And also not answered. It demands less certainty and more inquiry. Less talk and more listen. It's and excellent example of what some people call "a powerful question."