If you can, try and see some pieces of rock crystal, or something similar, such as two pebbles from the beach that are of the same kind of material, only one of the crystals or mineral samples is particularly perfect. The crystal should be perfectly clear, perfectly shaped, of a perfect size so that it looks as clear as fresh water. The other crystal should have bubbles in it, and bits of mineral in it, it should have other little crystals growing from it, and perhaps it even has a broken place.

The pieces of mineral should be similar: A piece of limestone, quartzite, granite or schist. It doesn’t matter what kind of mineral, just that one piece seems perfect and the other one doesn’t. One piece of granite is an even gray; the other has a red streak running across it. or it has brown spots, or maybe white lines. 

Look at both pieces of whatever stone you have, the perfect one and the one that has damage, funny parts to it or weird lumps. Enjoy the beauty of the perfect piece: see how the light shines on it or through it; see how perfect and elegant the “good” piece of stone is. Put it aside when you’ve seen it enough and then pick up the “bad” piece, the one with all the flaws, broken places, cloudiness if it’s a crystal, or lumpiness if it’s a mineral.

Put them both away for a while, and forget about them. Do something else. Then, a few days later, think about them again and watch what you’re thinking. Was the damaged crystal or the damaged piece of limestone that came to mind first, or the perfect one? Did you feel good about the perfect one, or did it make you feel unhappy? How did you feel about the piece with all the flaws?

And then you can ask yourself why you feel that way. There are a lot of things you can learn about yourself this way. Do you find perfection to be something that makes you feel good, or bad? Does imperfection make you feel good, or bad? Ask yourself why.

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