All you got was a mud ball Charlie Brown.

I am up sitting with a cup of coffee, splashed with soy milk – I’ve just finished my favorite German muesli covered with fresh raspberries. Listening to Katie Sawicki and waiting for it to rain. A slow awakening to the day — life is so grand, so lovely and precious in even the most simple of moments…I often think I will implode.

When I’ve made personal time over the weekend I have been reading Patti Digh’s book “Life Is A Verb”, 37 days to wake up, be mindful and live intentionally. She blogs at 37 days.

Here is an excerpt from Chapter 4 “Inclusion Be Generous” – the story she shares has to do with mud balls. And I am sure when one thinks of a ball of mud, one does not think of beauty but hikaru dorodango is just that making something exquisite when you have nothing to work with but literally the detritus of your life, the dirt at your feet.

From Life Is A Verb, “The joy of hikaru dorodango is twofold: the sheer pleasure that comes with creating, that meditative and wondrous place we go sometimes in the creative moment-coupled with the desire to create the shiniest ball.

And so we polish our own lives, creating landscapes and canyons and peaks with the very silt we try to avoid, the dirt we disavow or hide or deny. It is the dirt of our lives-the depressions, the losses, the inequities, the failing grades in trigonometry, the e-mails sent in fear or hate or haste, the ways in which we encounter people different from us-that shape us, polish us to a heady sheen, make us in fact more beautiful, more elemental, more artful and lasting. What if we considered our lives hikaru dorodango by showering in the silt and gently turning to let it fall evenly around us, realizing that we need it complete the work that is us? Its granules hold polish and the very possibility of art.”

Balls of mud – shown in the Shelby Fleetwood Gallery in Sante Fe. And through the miracle of the internet I traveled there, and paused to look at all the amazing art, the artists that look – life and how they see it.

All you got was a mud ball Charlie Brown – now what are you going to do with it? I am learning patience when I reflect on the dirt in our lives, I am reflecting on faith, on action and patience and seeing what can develop from very humble beginnings.



5 Responses to “All you got was a mud ball Charlie Brown.”

  1. TaraDharma Says:

    thanks to your blog – I went to 37 days and order her new book. Can’t wait to get it.

    that photo of the balls is stellar. wow.

  2. I’m so glad you did – I’m sure you’ll enjoy it. Patti is a warm and engaging person and a fantastic writer.

    Aren’t the mud balls amazing…I want to be in Sante Fe even more, now to roll mud!

    I am packing your order right now for All Dogged Up and headed over to the post office, added a few extra surprises.

    thanks and peace-

  3. Your blog always reads so Zen to me…

    And I am sort of jealous. I have yet to read any sort of book that you described and been able to get through it. I spend far too little time in getting to know myself…

  4. I’ve been avoiding the silt for some time now. Maybe its time to get my hands dirty.

  5. Thanks all — I think you would get all the way through this one Maria. It’s all told through stories (or mostly so) and the author is a damn talented writer.


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