Zvi Bellin, PhD, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor Rotating Header Image

Building Up, Tearing Down

I recently opened up a book called The Art of Possibility and came across the following story in the first few pages:

A shoe factory sends two marketing scouts to a region of Africa to study the prospects for expanding business. One sends back a telegram saying,


The other writes back triumphantly,


This quick quip has got me thinking about how my lived experiences have the power to open me up or shut me down to a sense of possibility. While a perspective of pervasive openness is ultimately desirable, the reality is that there are times in life when having one clear option, or path, is comforting. And of course, the same comforting path can soon become stifling and a feeling of needing to break free might arise.

As far as I can tell, if I stay authentic and open to my path, lived experiences craft and solidify the way I see the world. Ultimately, living with awareness disassembles that exact same rubric. Building temples and destroying temples. The same historical sequence occurs just as dramatically in the personal sphere.

There is a degree of letting go and surrendering that is necessary in order to reduce the suffering of deconstruction. Though, I feel far from helpless, or without agency. It is quite an engaging task to take down a no longer relevant tower of security. Each piece of the tower can be sifted for wisdom, like an archeologist sifting for fossilized treasure.

In what areas of your life are you building up systems and structures, and in what arenas are you tearing down and tumbling? Take time to discern where you have room to let go, and where you can engage in this new opportunity.

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