Friday, June 11, 2010

There's No Place Like Home

Remember when Dorothy returned to Oz to claim her reward for killing the wicked witch of the west? Her wish was to return home to Kansas. After the wizard accidentally flies off in his balloon without her, Glenda the good witch tells her she doesn’t need help to get home, that she always had the power to go home. When Scarecrow protests that Glenda should have told Dorothy that before, Glenda replies that Dorothy would not have believed her, that she had to learn it for herself.

She asks Dorothy what she has learned. Dorothy replies, “If I ever go looking for my heart’s desire again, I won’t look any further than my own backyard, because if it isn’t there, I never really lost it to begin with.”

How many times over the years have I seen this movie? And yet, how far have I traveled, how many books have I read, how many workshops have I attended, how many times in how many ways have I looked outside myself for the power to find my way home?

And for all that, have I learned anything different or wiser than what Dorothy learned in Oz? I don’t think so. But, like her, I guess I had to learn it for myself. And what have I learned? That the only place to find happiness is inside ourselves. If, as studies suggest, only 10% of our happiness is dependent on outside circumstances, that leaves a whopping 90% that is in our hands. And I’ve learned that the only time to find happiness is now. We can remember happy times in the past, we can anticipate happy times in the future, but the only time we can actually experience happiness is in this moment, this holy instant.

So I’m going to close my eyes and tap my heels together three times. There’s no place like home, there’s no place like home....

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