Recently, I had the opportunity to spend four days in reflection and learning, first at a day-long conference, followed by a retreat at King’s House. It was on these days that I first heard of a concept that was new to me, that is, the idea of a “beginner's mind."
What struck me was that this concept came up not once, but three times on three separate days from three different sources. Clearly, this was an idea, or practice, that God wanted me to ponder. This practice actually originates in Zen Buddhism and refers to approaching life with an attitude of openness, eagerness, and lack of preconceptions, just as a beginner would when learning something new. Even in situations in which we know a great deal about the subject, embracing the practice of the “beginner’s mind” and humbly setting aside biases and welcoming new ways of perceiving can be immensely freeing, opening up a world of possibilities.
In pondering what it means to have a “beginner’s mind,” I am reminded of the words of Jesus in Matthew 18:3: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”
It seems to me, that approaching each day with a “beginner’s mind” is exactly what Jesus was talking about. With child-like (not childish.) wonder and curiosity, let us welcome each day, grateful to our loving God for the countless blessings it holds.
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This week especially, let’s approach the commemoration of the Passion, Death and Resurrection of our Lord, Jesus Christ with a “beginner’s mind,” opening our eyes and hearts to experience anew the depth of God’s love for each of us. What joy we will know! Surely, we will be ever closer to the kingdom of heaven.