Wabi-Sabi is a Japanese aesthetic philosophy; "Wabi" means "quiet simplicity" and "Sabi" refers to the "patina of age" or weathering. Over time, Wabi-Sabi has become one combined concept meaning the simple beauty that comes with age. This philosophy is an acceptance and appreciation of the authenticity of the imperfect and transient nature of life. Cracks and imperfections are cherished as marks of the passage of time and loving use. During my travels this past summer, I have found that my artistic eye is more drawn to the weathered, the imperfect and the worn.
During my yoga practice the other day, I noticed my weathered, veiny hands and feet. My first reaction was “Wow - they are looking pretty knarly and old”. What surprised me was that I didn’t feel sad about that at the time. (That’s not to say that I don’t get moments of despair over the aging process. My dad used to say, “getting old ain’t for sissies” and I am beginning to understand what he meant.)
What I actually thought about in that moment, was all the stories these hands and feet have to tell. That black and blue big toenail tells the tale of hiking 110miles in the alps with inappropriate footwear, these feet have carried me across the Annapurnas in Nepal, the Thar desert, around Australia, and through 3 countries around Mt Blanc and have supported not only my weight but the weight of my babies. These hands have worked in a Kibbutz kitchen, have smoothed fevered brows, made countless dinners dug veggie gardens and carried their fair share of weight.
I hope that when I get another pang of grief during the aging process that I remember the richness of the many people, stories, adventures that have made their mark on this body, this face, these hands and feet.
#lovetheskinyou'rein #wabisabi #authenticageing