The person you envy is not an apple

The apple felt bad, sitting in the wooden box at the market. Just hours ago it had been all happy. Happy to be picked, happy to be transported to the market, happy to soon be bought. But then this other apple came. It was lying there, looking all perfect in the other box.

Suddenly the apple felt naked. The apples in the other box were all wrapped in thin paper. Why did they have paper wrapping? The apple would have loved to be wrapped in paper too, to cover up the brown spots. Even with paper, it wouldn't have looked as good as the apple in the other box. That apple looked big and perfectly rounded, not bumpy as the unwrapped apple.

Who will ever want to buy me, when there are beautiful apples just next to me?

And sure enough, when a woman with a bubbly laughter came to the stand, she immediately picked the beautiful apple. She opened the paper to look closer. When she did, the apple almost rolled out of the box with surprise. The beautiful apple wasn't an apple. It was an orange.

That colleague / neighbour / sibling you envy and compare yourself to, is not an apple.

Whenever you compare yourself to the image you have of someone else, you will inevitably compare apples and oranges.

Care - don't compare, and be proud of your unique appleness. 


A poem for mindfulness today

Do you, like so many, have a hard time being really present and enjoying what you have here and now?

Today I share a poem called An orchard at the bottom of a hill, by Maurice Manning to help you enjoy the silence.

Why don’t you try just being quiet?
If you can find some silence, maybe
you can listen to it. How it works
is interesting. I really can’t
explain it, but you know it when
it’s happening. You realize
you’re marveling at apple blossoms
and how they’re clustered on the tree
and you see the bees meticulously
attending every blossom there,
and you think the tree is kind of sighing.
Such careful beauty in the making.
And then you think, it’s really quiet,
but I am not alone in this world.
That’s how you know it’s happening,
there’s something solemn and wonderful
in the quiet, a slow and steady ease.
Whether the tree is actually sighing
is beside the point. It’s better to wonder,
you needn’t be precise with quiet,
it just becomes another thing.
It isn’t a science, it’s an art,
like love, or a dog who’s pretty good,
asleep in the grass beneath the tree.