Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Fancy some shoes?

“Where would I find enough leather
To cover the entire surface of the earth?
But with leather soles beneath my feet,
It’s as if the whole world has been covered.” 
― Śāntideva

Shantideva was an ancient Buddhist Saint.  I think he has a point don't you?  It's autism awareness day/month and there's the usual dialogue between awareness and acceptance. Both are important, and we all need to practice both - not just for autism, but heart disease, mental illness, cancer, ME, miscarriage, abuse survivors and a million, million other things we as humans are prey too.

What would be really great as well as the acceptance campaigns, would be our own offerings of not knowing, failing to understand but trying to anyway, listening to others and our judgements, and doing our best to notice but move past the latter. As an autistic adult I feel it's imperative to offer both my successes and my failures as part of my autism "story".  There is great happiness in being autistic, great love to be found in the most unusual of places, great peace and clarity in just being.  I want to offer it all rather than just showing the rocking child in the corner - these are snapshots of a life, not the whole of it.

Awareness is wonderful, so is acceptance. Will we find a world covered in leather, or will we take a step first and meet people coming the other way?