I have to agree with John Lennon that living is easy with eyes closed. I honestly think that turning a blind eye is part of the human default setting as my initial urge is always to look away when something is uncomfortable or hits too close to home. What’s more I far too often let life sweep me along at such an impossible pace that truly seeing the world around me, and the people in it, becomes a seemingly impossible blur. Albert Einstein cautioned against this, “He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead; his eyes are closed.” Equating blindness with death may is not as extreme as it sounds. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry said, “But the eyes are blind. One must look with the heart.” I cannot imagine life with a blinded heart.
Pausing to see is not just about seeing the reality of what is around us. Saint Augustine said, “Men go abroad to wonder at the heights of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of the rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motions of the stars, and they pass by themselves without wondering.” To see the world clearly we must have ourselves in clear focus first.