Receptivity is the simplest, most child-like human function. What we have to re-learn is that receptivity is not a function, but the function. All other functions are by-products. The whole of life is a parable of this. — Norman Grubb

Inspiration • the drawing in of breath

When first air touches upon our gentle lips and our lungs gasp with primal reflex, we have been taught the way of inspiration. It is the drawing in of breath. From an infant’s first to the elderly’s last, we innately know this way. Inspiration is written into the code of our lives. The decisive question is whether we keep in sync with this foundational rhythm.

I’ve heard it said (according to my Christian worldview) that while death is reality, it is not natural. This is why we so strain to bear its gravity. I posit that something opposite can be said for our life-breath. While inspiration is natural, it is too normally not our reality. We bear such a suffocating weight. Oh, how often we must remind ourselves to “just breathe.”

So then, how ought we to reclaim the reality of instinctual inspiration?

We begin with a heightened awareness of that which we breathe in every day. In quietude and calm we re-sensitize and synchronize to the rhythms of life. Remember that we are perpetual recipients. We receive knowledge, music, beauty, and light. We receive children’s laughter, a stranger’s knowing smile, the sunbeam’s soothing kiss, and the scent of advancing rain.

Once aware, we remain attentive to the life being nourished in us. In solitude and meditation, we begin to handle that which we’ve been given. We turn it over in our heads and in our hearts. Some things we’ll choose to discard as rubbish. Others we’ll hold warily as something wonderful, though strange. Still others, we’ll tuck into the safe places and cherish for all time.

And, in the end, all that we’ve received will fill us full. Finite beings that we are, it will bust our seams. It is at this glorious moment that our inspirations coalesce into creativity.

This is how we see the world anew. This is how we make the world anew.

Inspire. Breathe. Life.