Hemmeligheten er: Du er alltid her.
(elske, sanse, dele, danse)
Sårbarhet, mot og kjærlighet: stillhuman.no og Senter for bevisst fødsel (kommer snart)
The Invitation by Oriah Mountain Dreamer
It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love for your dream for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon… I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.
I want to know if you can sit with pain mine or your own without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy mine or your own if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful to be realistic to remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day. And if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure yours and mine and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, “Yes.”
It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done to feed the children.
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.
During an inspiring meeting in an inspiring café, an inspiring woman asked me an inspiring question. She asked:
What is Social Innovation?
And it made me think:
Yes, what is Social Innovation?
And it was kind of funny, because we were there in the inspiring café, basically discussing how to communicate and engage people in often complex matters, like social innovation often is, without boring or scaring people off. I love terms like social innovation and social entrepreneurship and (let me think, what else) disruption and new economy, I use them all the time and it’s part of what I do, it’s my work. But I also use them because they sound important and they make me look special. Sounding important and looking special is well enough, but is it social innovation?
A couple of years ago, I was on the phone with my now deceased grandfather. I’ve written about him before, he spent over 90 years on the same, small farm as I grew up on. I had quit my graphic design business and was full on in a new start up, stumbling out into the fields of social innovation. On the phone, I tried to explain to my grandfather what I was doing, and why. He was a smart guy, allright, but happily, he lived far away from any buzzword. I remember it so well, how he listened patiently to my efforts, how he allowed the silence to be there when I was done. He wasn’t making a point with his silence, it was just a part of how he talked. Then he said:
Yes… Doing good things for other people is a good thing.
The rain is coming down and the spirit is on its way up. After a long, brainstormy walk I have a moment by myself before taking the boys to their grandparents.
My writing took a new turn yesterday, as a Norwegian text of mine was published on a friend’s blog. It feels good and frightening to express myself in my native language. Frightening because I feel naked, good because it’s an opportunity to express my self in more “authentic and precise” ways, as a commenter suggested.
I can see how I’m sometimes using English as a mask to hide behind, but at the same time it feels like allowing different parts of my personality (soul) to become visible. Who am I when I write English? Who am I when I speak German?
I love the picture of letting myself fall backwards. Falling backwards into myself. Understanding the importance of letting go is a lot to ask from a head, but that’s excactly what my soul is asking, again and again. Let go and let the truth of who I am emerge through every moment I’m here, through every language and stumbling human expression, let go, let go and let the soul dance through me.
How often don’t we think we need to be faster and better and stronger, while everything life asks from us is beauty? Do what you do, but feel it.
In the deeply experienced doing hides the beautiful being.
Feel it, my friend, feel the misunderstandings and the expectations, feel the average Monday morning, the rain. Feel the coffee and the inspiration, feel your heart beating, the dance of your eyelids, the start of a new week!
On a scale from one to ten, I’m feeling so incredibly excited right now! 100 Days of Love — my first book — just came online on Amazon, it’s a book, it’s there, you can buy it and download it and read it on your Kindle or iPad or on whatever makes you happy! 100 Days of Love, my first 100 days of blogging and sharing what I love and dream of and fear, 100 days of passion and purpose and taking leaps out of any comfort zone I’ve ever known. And you know what? I love it!
What do you love? Our bright minds sure love to complicate things, and although it may seem that way, life doesn’t have to be a misty maze of difficult matter. I may be naive at times, I admit it and promise never to change it — because in my experience, doing what you love is not only possible, it is also feasible, reasonable, profitable, attainable, practicable and the greatest source of joy there is!
I love writing and I love sharing and now I’m so happy to share this book with you! As happy as I am that the ebook is online, it feels extra great to also be working with a print edition, for which I’m so lucky to be working with the fantastic photographer Camilla Jensen. If we’re really lucky, we’ll have the printed version of 100 Days of Love ready before December!
But now, ebook! If you feel inspired by this blog, or touched or moved or annoyed or any feeling as long as you feel, help me get it out to the world by sharing and liking and recommending and giving it wings to fly with!
#100love - Passion and purpose, one blog post at a time!
Brainstorming a new idea by myself in the rain while walking and then on the phone and it’s still raining and I love having new ideas and I love pretending they are swimming pools I can dive right into and swim and play and sometimes I think I need to get myself together and stop having all these ideas but then I let the fuck go and swim some more because I love it. Because I love it.
I just started writing a text about fuckups and the art of failing. As I started writing it, I immediately knew what was wrong. I made the mistake of thinking I could write about something real in general ways.
You are still very small boys, yet you are already exploring your human potential in fantastic and curious ways. I can’t say I know where you came from, but I imagine it to be limitless, and full of possibility. Now you are here, with us, in a limited world, or so it seems.
Your mum and I have started what will probably go on for the rest of your life. People will tell you how wrong you are. They, and we, will say that you’re not good enough and that whatever you’re imagining is not real or possible. We will teach you that there’s such a thing as right and wrong, and that right is better than wrong. We will even teach you that you are better when you do right than when you do wrong.
I know it sounds crazy. And the fact that I teach you these things hurts me more than you can imagine. This is also part of being human. We do things we don’t want to do. Why? I guess it’s because we’re feeling helpless and afraid. Helplessness and fear hurts, and since whatever hurts must be wrong and not right, we try to cover it all up by doing more things we don’t want to do.
My goodness, what is this place, anyway? What have I brought you into?
A guy who used to walk the planet like we do now, once said: “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do”. I think he was onto something. As you see already, we don’t really know what we’re doing. We’re helpless and clueless and we fuck up for eachother and ourselves and we feel really, really bad about it. But, as this guy said, we can also forgive eachother for it.
My dear boys, forgiveness is such a cool human concept. I think the best explanation of forgiveness is to love eachother, regardless what we do. Because of all these weird things we teach you, you will find yourself in situations later on in life where you feel like you fucked up. You will feel like you failed and you will probably even feel that you are a failure. This is where forgiveness can play first violin. To forgive oneanother is one thing, but my hope for you is that you can always forgive yourself. You won’t always know what you do, and you can forgive and love yourself for it. It hurts, and it brings you forward, or backward, it doesn’t really matter. What matters it that it brings you closer in touch with your experience of yourself, with you, who you really are, beyond all those rights and wrongs.
And here’s the thing: There isn’t really such a thing as failure. No matter how hard you try, you cannot fuck up. You can think and feel that you do, and through that experience it as real, but it isn’t, not really.
I wanted to write a text about fuckups and the art of failing and it became a letter to you, to my Elia and Lean. I love you so incredibly much and it makes me so happy to see that you love yourself, too. In fact, I think it’s essentially impossible not to love ourselves, but I think it’s very possible to forget that we do. My dear friends, whatever you do, please don’t forget!
Go out there now my boys, play and explore! Run through the forrests and up on the hills, swim in the lakes and gaze at the stars! Fall on your face, my friends, fall and fall and get up again. Fail and learn and fuck up all you can, and forgive yourself again and again. And then, in the midst of it all, when you’re grown men running around in a landscape of stories, please just stop for a moment. Take a breath. Look at the flowers, let them look at you.
I know it sounds crazy. But it’s so beautiful too! Always search for beauty, and it surely will find you.
With so much love — your father (happily fucking things up!).
After 100 days of writing comes the 101st day of writing. There’s nothing special about it: It started, things happened and it comes to an end. I woke up, did stuff and will soon return to bed. It’s life, it’s the wind blowing in the trees — it does so because that’s what it does.
For someone who experience purpose and life’s intrinsic meaning as much as I do, it feels strangely liberating to sometimes look at things from an entirely demystified angle. When the wind blows and the dog barks and I get up and eat and shit and dance and make love because that’s just what winds and dogs and humans do, it seems at first like things lose their meaning, like everything kinda falls apart. But then a shift occurs, a click if you will. Something changes when you simply start doing what you do, without asking or searching for any more meaning than what is simply there, right in front of you.
Just give it a try, see what happens! Brush your teeth, feel anger arising, drive your car, dream of a different future. Laugh and cry and do your dishes. For a moment or a day, try to do the stuff you do, simply because it’s the stuff you do. Why? Because you’re human. Because humans tend to make things really complicated. And because great things can happen when we don’t.
I walk. All the time. One foot in front of the other. Then the next. A nice thing with walking is that I know how to do it. It’s almost like breathing. My body does the most amazing things without me even giving it a thought. When I move my body from one point to another using a strategy called double pendulum, I would typically walk. It can be analyzed, it can be described in pretty intense detail, both physically and emotionally, but here’s the thing: I just walk.
I just did it, I walked. I guess you could say I walked fast, but that’s only if you compare it to something or somebody else. If you don’t, which I didn’t, I simply walked. And walked. And I don’t know what happened exactly, but at some point during my walk I just became a walker. I stopped being anything else for a moment, I stopped thinking, I stopped being Åsmund or daddy or boyfriend, I simply submerged into the process of walking. You could say I became a tool, but it sounds so mundane compared to how it felt like. But if a hammer gets to hit nails I guess it feels accomplished, too. I felt accomplished. I felt the need to feel letting go in my footsteps. I just walked.
That’s a lot of words for a simple message. Writing is indeed different from walking. But writing, as well as breathing and every other human activity, can also be done effortlessly, entirely without controlling thoughts, without even a drop of strategy. We can do the most amazing things, without even giving it a thought. It often feels difficult. But sometimes it’s quite simple. Just start walking.