Appreciating …

By Celia Coates

WINN appears now on the first and third Friday of each month, but there’s an extra Friday this November. Here’s a very small, “extra” WINN:

“One of our major flaws, and causes of our unhappiness, is that we find it hard to take note of what is always around. We suffer because we lose sight of the value of what is before us and yearn, often unfairly, for the imagined attractions of elsewhere.”

 “ …  The problem is partly caused by our skill at getting used to things: our mastery of the art of habituation. … However, habit can just as easily become a cause of misfortune, when it makes us prone to barely register things that, although familiar, deserve careful engagement. Instead of editing out the lesser things, so that we can concentrate on what is crucial (as ideally happens on the road), we end up editing out elements of the world that have much to offer us.”

 We are encouraged to want more and more and more, newer and newer things because it’s good for business. So, this week, I’m giving thanks for the old, everyday richness of life.

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This excerpt comes from ART AS THERAPY by Alain de Botton and John Armstrong, published by Phaidon in 2013.

(I especially enjoyed the chapter asking, “What Should Political Art Be Aiming At?”)

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