They make a difference.
In fiction, a specific detail can build credibility and versimillitude.
In comedy, the situational detail can sell the joke, but the telling detail can send it into orbit so it absolutely kills.
In poetry, the precision of a detail can be an avenue directly into the heart.
In a classroom lesson, as you know, omitting the proper detail can result in confusion and bewilderment, while including the right one can cause nothing short of epiphanies and revelations.
As Zen Teachers, then, our goal is to find the right details and to nurture, celebrate and, most importantly, recognize and acknowledge them.
Not just in our classrooms, but in our lives.
So often, though, we ignore the details in favor of keeping the machine rolling. But I want to suggest to you that, without seeing the details, and being mindful of them, the machine’s not worth rolling.
So right now, look around. Find the detail that defines this moment:
Is it the bird singing outside the window?
The pickle on your sandwich?
The dog snoring in the corner?
The crash of the waves at the beach?
The ticking clock in your empty classroom as you prepare for next fall?
The distant drone of the Cessna overhead, as it cuts through the clouds?
The swoosh of the espresso machine at the local coffeehouse?
The humming signal of the A/C as it goes on in the family room?
The breeze that tickles the hairs on your arm?
The rhythm of the Brad Paisley song on the car radio?
The yellow, pink, and orange buds as they sway on the rosebush outside the kitchen window?
The bunnies hopping in the canyon below your patio?
The cheers of the crowd at your daughter’s soccer game?
The magical, windchime tringle of her laughter?
The silence and grace of your meditative stillness.
What makes this moment. . . .this moment?
Find the detail, and you’ll find the moment. TZT