The lens through which you see
“If you wear glasses, you likely often forget that they’re even there! Only when you take the lenses off do you realize how much your capacity to see is informed by the lens through which you are seeing or as Richard Rohr often says, ‘How we see is what we see.’”
Cynthia Bourgeault, The Shape of God: Deepening the Mystery of the Trinity, disc 2 (CAC: 2004) .
Cynthia is using this story to teach us about the Trinity, but we can apply it to our everyday life. This is a good exercise for myself, you, and for those you are meeting with for spiritual direction if you or the person wears glasses.
Take off your glasses. Try to see at a distance or read a passage. Perhaps you will “see” or realize that what you “see” so depends on the lenses of your glasses. Often our lens or how we see the world is through the lens of our work, family, need for prestige, desire for money or control or power, need to be in the spotlight or successful, obsessed with beauty, clothes, food, alcohol, drugs or other addictions that control our lives. When our world or the sun is too bright, we need to put on sun glasses as Zoe and Turner are wearing. At other times if we are depressed or grieving, we truly may be seeing the world through dark glasses. Meditate, pray about, and write down what are the lenses you use to view your family, friends, enemies, the world? In our attempt to stay connected to God individually and in community our hope is that we will connect to the Christ in each other and the Christ in our neighbor and see ourselves and the world and others through the lens of the fruit of the spirit: love, joy, peace, forbearance (patience), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23).
Instead. Some say spiritual direction is helping someone become awake. Spiritual direction can also be putting on a new pair of glasses.