Become a Possibilitarian

What if everything were possible?
Aside from the possibility (ha!) that we might lose our ability to appreciate what always comes too easily, consider this: What if peace were actually within reach, and relationships stayed honest and true? What if you could choose work that had heart and soul and meaning, and whatever it was, it was enough to live on, and it bore fruit, and it made a difference in your world. What if you opened your eyes every morning with joy and anticipation, and closed them at night with satisfaction and happiness?

What if you became a Possibilitarian?

A Possibilitarian! How rich and ripe with potential. What a juicy and marvelous word that brings to mind a barely contained inferno – ideas, thoughts, words, things, colors – all jumbling about, ricocheting, sparking, bursting forth in a swirling mass of joyous abandon, yet loosely contained in some serene, contented, centered place. To me it’s a riotous, even overwhelming, cacophony of color and sound and potential.

Let me put it this way. It’s like attending your first Cirque du Soleil performance. You’re mesmerized by the colors, the movement, the impossible acrobatics, the music – the whole out-of-control event – that’s somehow barely held together. Yeah, it’s like that.

I think it’s that loose containment – that barely-there sense of control – that allows the rise of a Possibilitarian. Without it, the colors and sounds and ideas and words and thoughts would simply spin off and expand like the universe following the Big Bang. No, the containment is essential because it allows all those possibilities to cross paths again and again, to respark, to recombine in new and innovative ways. That containment so reverently upholds the irrepressible sense that anything, everything, is possible.

I ran across the phrase while browsing through a local artisan shop. In the corner, I spied a jumble of affirmative decorative plaques, boxes, hearts, baskets, doo-dads. One, a small ceramic pedestal (not unlike a miniature cake platter), practically jumped out at me. “Become A Possibilitarian” was decoratively stamped on the top. It might as well have shouted those words at me. And I listened. It now sits on my desk, a constant reminder – or maybe a constant prodding – of how I feel when I encourage my own free-range possibilities.

That’s heady stuff if you think about it: It’s a little tough to capture in words, but I do love the concept. I’m sure it means something different to all of us, and I wouldn’t begin to guess someone else’s thoughts. But I can tell you what it means to me.

To become a Possibilitarian means I exist in the world of “what if?” I revel in options and refuse to be limited only to what’s solid, real, provable, and known. It means I encourage myself to think outside the box, to love imagination, to honor creativity, to cultivate curiosity. It’s entertaining wild, outlandish, and even impossible concepts.

And maybe this is the secret: allowing those possibilities to find expression serves a greater purpose. It allows those sparks and ricochets to bump up against one another, to play together in hopes of discovering new rules and possibilities, new solutions and answers, new perspectives and values. Entertaining the outlandish strengthens my values, my beliefs and my actions. It leads me toward enlightenment because it helps me find the possibility in everything.

Lewis Carroll knew that. In Through the Looking Glass, he wrote:

“‘There’s no use trying,’ [Alice] said. ‘One can’t believe impossible things.’
‘I daresay you haven’t had much practice,’ said the Queen. ‘When I was your age, I always did it for half an hour a day. Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.’”

I never want to tamp down that rich, inner Cirque du Soleil that roils inside me, lest I numb my soul and blind myself to what might be possible. To me, a Possibilitarian – and I hope to always be becoming one – serves as a calm, serene vessel just barely holding in check all that’s possible within “what if.”

Become a Possibilitarian, whatever that might mean to you!

By the way, Become a Possibilitarian is the creation of Kelly Rae Roberts, an artist and Possibilitarian. Her mission, she writes, is to create beautiful, meaningful artwork that tells the truth. Check out her stuff.

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