Opening the Blinds


Blinds Down in my Living Room

One thing about living in a beautiful house on the ocean with lots of windows that face south and west is that when the sun hits those windows in the late afternoon the light can be blinding, the house can heat up, and the fabrics in the furniture and carpet start to fade in the bright light. So I close the blinds to protect all of that and to not have to wear sunglasses around the house to see through the glare. Now that the blinds are closed I often leave them closed because I know that even if I do open them, I’ll have to close them again later in the afternoon. I also like my blinds down in my bedroom because the bear in me loves the cave at night when I sleep and when I get up in the morning I like to move slowly into the light. All of this makes complete sense. The only challenge is that after awhile I get kind of used to the blinds being down, it’s just easier and when I want to look out I can always open the blinds right next to me, either at my desk or by the chair it sit in in the living room. Back to the challenge part, I start to get closed in a bit, don’t I? I start to feel it’s normal to live in a beautiful house on the ocean and to have this incredible open water and sky in front of me and to have all the blinds down. I don’t even notice after awhile that the blinds are down, if I want to have a bowl of cereal or some lunch in the sun I just step out on the deck for a few minutes and enjoy my meal in the sun, I finish up and go back to a blinds down world.

I am struck by the metaphor of my blinds and the connection to, my own and all of human consciousness. How often do I move into a place of consciousness, a house on the beach with big views and many windows, and then slowly I start to lower the blinds. I lower them for perfectly good reasons, mostly having to do with my comfort, or so I think anyway. Pretty soon, however, I am living in the shadow again, living with blinders on, just taking little forays into the sun of consciousness. I don’t even notice it happening to me, I don’t even notice. Even though I am all about consciousness, I don’t see that the blinds are down. It’s like the story of putting the frog in a pot of water and he is swimming around in it happily and someone turns the heat up under the pot and he doesn’t even notice the temperature going up and then he is a dead cooked frog.

Blinds up in the Living Room

Blinds up in the Living Room.

Today the window cleaners are coming to get the windows all clean for our big thanksgiving feast in a couple of weeks. I went around and opened all the blinds and felt like crying. I got this wide open feeling in my chest and water gathering behind my eyes a little choked up as I took in all that was around me. I feel like I am in this floating office completely surrounded by beauty. How can this beauty not be let into me every day? Sure I can moderate the glare and close and open blinds, but to just black out a little more of the world bit by bit and not notice is the crime most of us are engaged in in some way all the time. How do we keep the blinds open as much as possible, without being stupid, naive or uncaring for ourselves and our world?

I also want to say that none of what I have written here is being written from judgment mind. I am not judging mySelf for closing the blinds. I am sad to see and feel that I let that happen in so many ways in my life. I am overjoyed to notice and to see how easy and beautiful it is to just open them up again. I am feeling compassion for all of us humans as we innocently close the blinds on our consciousness and then forget that we closed them. I am more committed then ever to having all of us humans check the status of our blinds and what we are choosing about opening or closing them. Today I am living with my blinds open, except for the one or two I may need to lower to prevent blindness 😉


Riff – yes
Meditation – no
Food – 6-10
Movement – 2-10
Blog – yes
Pipe Dreaming – no

Intention for today
Riff – yes
Meditation – yes
Food – 8-10
Movement 8-10
Blog – yes
Pipe Dreaming – yes

2 responses to “Opening the Blinds

  1. Henry! I love love love this metaphor. You’ve just helped waken me up to a moment in my day where I was slipping into unconsciousness…blinds lowering…and I’m more awake now. I’m raising them up again, and remembering a task I’ve been hibernating away from. So, off I go to conquer it. Thank you! Big hugs! xoxo

  2. Hey Henry,

    I’ve had a transformative week and have been reading a bit in your blog. I just moved to a house overlooking the mouth of Narragansett bay and the Atlantic. We don’t have blinds yet, and that’s how I feel about my life right now. No blinds, openness, beginner’s mind with all of it. Thanks for pointing to this. Love you and miss you.


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