In A Heartbeat

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It’s been said that better questions lead us naturally to better answers, and that it’s in not knowing that we open the doorway to knowing. I’m Scott Lennox and you’re listening to The Beautiful Question, a consideration of things that truly matter in a complex world.

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For better or worse, our lives can change so quickly, and all at once, everything becomes different in ways we could never imagine or foresee. Among many others, one of the most important questions is, “How will we choose to face change when it happens?”

Join me this week as we consider ways of intentionally being with what is and making the best of it. Stay with me.

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Photo: Scott Lennox


Last week, one of my closest friends suffered a heart attack and was rushed by air ambulance to a hospital a hundred miles away where a team of skillful and compassionate specialists saved his life. Those who know him would never have thought him a candidate for a cardiac event, but life can be surprising.

In a heartbeat, the life he knew in the way he knew it is essentially over and a new life has begun. I’m happy to report that he’s doing remarkably well and I’m looking forward to the conversations we’ll have about some of the changes he’ll create as his life moves forward.

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As I thought about what happened, two profound statements immediately came to mind. The first is by the late Joseph Campbell: “We must let of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.” The second is the marvelous definition of acceptance offered by the mindfulness teacher, Jon Kabat-Zinn: “Acceptance is an engaged willingness to be with what is.”

When we face high-level changes, the way we accept what’s happening and the ways in which we respond to the questions that come will direct our next steps. Some of the principal questions are: Am I going to give up or will I keep going? Am I stuck in fear and pain, or will I accept what’s happening and get busy shaping the new life ahead of me? Will I keep reaching helplessly backward trying to regain what I think I’ve lost, or will I actively build hope and a meaningful life by embracing the miracle of my new existence? And finally, Since I am the one making choices, what do I choose my new life to be about?

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Coming out the other side of life-altering changes affords us the opportunity to stop and consider the truly important questions. Who we are and what are we about? What has meaning for us? Do we choose to live in fear or in love? With what inner resonance and authenticity do we want to carry ourselves as we move forward? How do we choose to celebrate the gifts we find in each moment? How do we want to engage with others and who do we want around us? What healthy choices will make our vision of our best a reality?

Actively engaging at this level of consideration, we often find a set of gifts we will discover in no other way. When we become intentional about appreciating the good—even when we’re strongly challenged, and loss is taking place—everything can change for the better. Our perceptions change. Our sense of gratitude changes. The depth and expansiveness of our experience changes. Our engagement with life changes.

We change!

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How many times in my own life have I been brought to a complete stop or brought to my knees as radical things happened in me and around me? In each case, especially when the changes were surprisingly sudden, it took time for the dust to settle and for clarity to return. Sometimes, quite a while.

When clarity finally came, I could see (or choose) a purpose based on what happened. As I discussed in a recent podcast, becoming still and learning to appreciate every good thing were major parts of my own healing. Before long, true inner stillness and looking for the good had become habitual.

The benefits continue to reveal themselves.

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As a practice of self-discovery, it might be interesting to “check” in with yourself a few times every day this week, especially in those moments when things are not going as swimmingly as you’d like. As you bring yourself to a quiet stop, mentally take note of what you’re experiencing without adding judgment to it. Notice what hurts (if anything). Notice what feels good. Notice what you’ve been thinking. And make sure and notice the things that are going well.

As you do, what awareness arises? What do you need in that moment? What can you celebrate?

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In the spirit of that level of awareness, I offer this week’s Beautiful Questions in the hope that you’ll consider them in your own way, and in the hope that something useful arises from your considerations.

Question One: What sudden changes have you been through in your life and what came from those experiences?

Question Two: What changes are you going through now and how are you facing them?

Question Three: As you move forward, what sense of purpose or meaning do you want to bring to your life?

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I look forward to hearing about your answers. Write and tell me.

As I say each week,
My Light with Your Light!

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Thank you for joining me in these podcasts as we keep doing the things we can to respond to life in increasingly effective ways. As always, I’m open to your comments and feedback.

You can be further inspired by visiting my friends at Kosmos Journal. That’s K O S M O S Journal. Their mission is to inform, inspire, and engage global transformation in harmony with all life. You can easily find them online at Kosmos Journal dot O R G.

And at, you can read the illustrated transcript of each podcast as you listen. You’ll also find an archive of all previous podcasts, including episodes three and four, guided relaxation audios that can help you practice letting go on a daily basis.

If you find these podcasts useful, don’t hesitate to share them or tell others about them. That’s a great way of helping me get a voice of calm and collaboration and balance and encouragement out into the world.

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I’m Scott Lennox, and this has been The Beautiful Question.

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The Beautiful Question is a One Light production, written, produced, and engineered by Scott Lennox at HeartRock Studios in Fort Worth, Texas, as a way of paying forward to life, being fully present, becoming better engaged with things that truly matter in a complex world, and committing to a healthier future for all of us.

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