This is a door.
This is me approaching the door.
This is me standing here: threshold.
This is me going through the door.
This is me saying DOOR.
Door door door door door.
And sometimes: Hello, Door.
Last week I taught this class on the Art of Embarking.
And later a bunch of people asked me how you begin to start paying attention to entry.
They wanted to know how you begin to establish rituals of entry.
What’s a ritual?
A ritual is not as weird or complicated as it sounds. Or rather: it doesn’t need to be.
It’s really just a marker.
A ritual is a marker.
Anything that marks time or space. Anything that says: I am here. Anything that reminds you about your presence in a specific place or moment.
Start with the doors.
Symbolic and literal entrance. The moment of door might be the easiest place to begin.
Or maybe it’s three moments:
- The moment before the door.
- The moment of door.
- The moment after the door.
Or maybe it’s hundreds of tiny little moments. It doesn’t matter.
That is: it doesn’t matter for our purposes right now.
Being aware of DOOR as you are crossing through is another form of the pause. Paws!
Today I’m entering Crossing the Line.
We begin the Crossing (password: haulaway) at 5:00pm this evening.
I am saying hello to all the entryways as I pass through the doors.
The literal doors:
The door to the building, the door to the Playground itself, the doors to the Refueling Station, the Treasure Room, the Toy Shop, the Galley and my Pirate Queen Quarters/Dressing Room.
The pink fairy door.
And other more internal doors.
The doors to creativity, inspiration, play, delight, curiosity and the scientific process.
But here’s the thing.
Everything is a door.
Even walls, as uncle Ralph said.
So the question becomes:
If everything is a door, what am I doing to mark the moment of passing through it?
This is me and this is the door.
Me and my relationship to the door. Me and my relationship with myself as I am going through doors.
Me and the person I am becoming as a result of having experienced this particular passage through this particular door.
All of it.
Play with me!
Self-practice and the giant communal and commenting blanket fort.
We can invent rituals.
We can name doors.
We can pile on ridiculous things so that our door-rituals become more and more baroque, and the entire day just becomes one giant door-crossing extravaganza. (I’m picturing illustrations by Dr. Seuss.)
We can have doors for depletion and doors for celebration.
We can put doors inside of doors. We can say door over and over again until it loses all meaning. We can make doors for future-us.
Usual comment zen applies. We all have our stuff. We’re all working on our stuff.
We take responsibility for what’s ours, we let other people have what’s theirs. We don’t give advice. We’re supportive and welcoming. Everyone belongs. We play.