The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper” ~ W.B. Yeats
This time last year, I had no idea what I wanted to plant. It’s so clear when looking back at this post, Sweet is Spring, I wrote then about spring’s arrival. This year, though, I know exactly what I want to cultivate; beauty. I just don’t have enough energy yet for sowing. But what better time than now to start preparing the soil!
What kind of beauty I’m after?
I’m a big champion for pure beauty and art for art’s sake. The aesthetic value of literature, dance, visual art and so on, which is subjective by the way. But what I’m interested in exploring further is the magic found in the mundane. Beauty that goes beyond the visual, and beyond the surface, to reveal something deeper.
Why pursue everyday beauty, of all things?
The word “everyday” sounds so pedestrian, doesn’t it! But as the wise say, beauty is the beginning of everything. Think about the beauty of the clean air we breathe, water and food to nourish our bodies, warm embraces of the sun, shelter against harsh weather, to just name a few. Now, think of a world with none of these! How beautiful is it?
A huge part of our daily lives is mundane. We can’t always go on excursions to experience beauty that makes us feel like part of something bigger than ourselves. Yet, we can find magic from human interactions, cherishing memories, celebrating little things and so on. In fact, embracing everyday beauty can sometimes fill us with a sense of awe. Think about random acts of kindness from strangers or to honour a loved one!
In August 2021, I started Project Finding Beauty. I didn’t know how sustaining this seemingly frivolous act of finding everyday beauty would become. Challenges didn’t go away. In fact, they multiplied. But appreciating even the smallest things in life helped shift my mindset.
Writing in collaboration
That’s why (after much deliberation) I’m putting more effort into finding beauty. And this time, I’m writing in collaboration with a friend; an exciting endeavour. 🙂 Since my friend and I engage in a lot of email exchange, we thought why not encourage each other to continue searching for everyday magic.
An epistle is a letter in a form of prose or poetry to a particular person or group. And it’s exactly the form we plan to explore. I will occasionally share some of my epistles here on the blog, as I did with On Rekindling a Sense of Awe. But a newsletter will be a container for most, and sometimes responses from my friend, who is on an indefinite blogging hiatus.
Why the epistle or epistolary form?
“The epistolary form was (and is) so kind to a poet who needs to talk.” ~ CM Burroughs
I want to clarify that, for me, seeking beauty is not about disregarding or being indifferent to reality. It’s also not about shying away from tough conversations, as you’ll notice. But about having honest conversations about things that make us human, seeing beauty in everything. Or if we can’t, at least, accept things we cannot control. I’m also reclaiming the joy of my childhood, letter writing, in keeping with my one word vision, play, for 2023.
My greatest hope with this newsletter is to encourage an appreciation of everyday beauty, genuine conversations about things that make us human, and the nurturing of relationships. You’d like this kind of encouragement or to just follow along? Sign up for Project Finding Beauty: Epistles to a Friend!
I know your inbox is sacred, and that’s why you’ll hear from me fortnightly. When you sign up, you can claim a FREE downloadable resource with prompts to feed your senses, between letters. Hope to see you inside.
Happy Spring Equinox, in advance! ♥
I love this, Khaya! Training our eyes, mind, and heart to discover and appreciate the magic and beauty of the mundane is the secret to living a joyful life. I’ve signed up for the newsletter. 💜
YAY! So looking forward in exploring beauty with you. 🙂 Thank you, Natalie. <3
A very interesting project, Khaya. I like the idea of the newsletter as well. I wanted to explore ways to share my thoughts too this year and have started a group of readers and writers(not a book club/ reading group). Virtual, active and churning new ideas. Good luck with your project.
Thank you, Rajani. It’s one of those things I wanted to do for a long time. Your group of readers and writers’ project sounds brilliant, too. And another form of thinking together or sharing our thoughts. It offers something more than just talking about our books all the time. 🙂 All the best to you as well.
Yep – count me in, dear Poet/October friend!
A noble pursuit that sounds so simple and yet is so difficult to do. May you find the extraordinary in the ordinary
Oh, YAY! So lovely to have you on board, my dear friend! <3
“sounds so simple and yet is so difficult to do.” True that! 🙂 And thank you for the encouragement, Mariss!
This sounds like a wonderful idea, Khaya! Looking forward to your epistles in my inbox 😉
Love your new project Khaya! Sounds so exciting! Bravo! 💖👏🏼💖 I loved this, “Beauty that goes beyond the visual, and beyond the surface, to reveal something deeper.” This is so very divine and connected so effortlessly. More power to you my friend. 🥰🦋😘 Continue to gain the elevation that you deserve! 🦅
The mundane is full of beauty, Khaya. I’m so glad you’re on the look out, and I’m certain you’ll find beautiful every time you pause and pay attention. A lovely project my friend. What a joy to read your plans. Huge hugs.
I’m so happy you are willing to give a try, Kathy. 🙂 Actually, when I read your post on Boredom, I had already scheduled this post. I was again stunned by the coincidence…And more importantly, I could relate.
That divine, connected and interconnectedness…*speechless!! Thank you so much Kym for your support. I appreciate it. <3
I’m trying hard to pay attention, despite the noise. But I’m hopefully…Many thanks, Diana. I appreciate the encouragement. HUGS!
You are so very welcome Khaya my dear. It’s my pleasure! Continue to soar!!! 🐱🏍🦋🐱🏍
This is going to be a strange correlation, but bear with me…
I recently went on a tour at the coroner’s office. He gave us a tour and walked us through the facets of the job. And it struck me that all of these things, all these processes and jobs and rituals, have been happening all day, every day. Like an undercurrent to the life we see.
As morbid as that is, I think it is true for things like beauty and rebirth too. No matter what we are seeing in front of us, those things are ever present, running in the background somewhere or surrounding us. We just have to know to look.
I love this project. I can’t wait to follow it.
It’s not a strange correlation at all. It makes perfect sense, and ties up to everything. The observation / lesson from the coroner’s visit, every day things as like an undercurrent to the life we see, is powerful. And “We just have to know how to look.” True this!
I’m super glad to have you journey with me, through this project as well, Christina. Thank you.