Kintsugi is the Japanese art of putting broken pottery pieces back together with powdered gold or silver — the Japanese believe that in embracing flaws and imperfections, one can create a stronger, more beautiful piece of art. This 400-year-old technique actually highlights the “cracks” as a part of the design. Using this as a metaphor for healing ourselves teaches us an important lesson: Sometimes in the process of repairing things that have broken, we actually create something more unique, beautiful and resilient. And as a life skill, it is a way to move away from being a victim of circumstances to being a learner of experience. This is the basis of resilience. This also relates to the Japanese philosophy of Wabi Sabi that encourages us to embrace our imperfections. Wabi Sabi is basically experiencing beauty in simplicity.
Kintsugi works on the philosophy to honor the basic essence of a being – the inherent value of a human being and the potential that cannot be thwarted by setbacks. Just as a broken object can be repaired and made not only useful but also beautiful again, so it can be for human potential. We can always begin again no matter what we have been through. So own the ‘scars’ and look back at your journey as that of growth and healing – The tough times that we go through is the liquid gold, the lacquer that glues our innate strength to the broken parts of ourselves.
It is the challenges and the tough times that enable us to learn things. We grow through these learnings and perhaps transform through them as well. Things will not always go well, struggles will come our way and it is how we react to these that will become defining moments in our life. These are lessons to share with people – not to hide and set us apart from others. And it also teaches us that other people are not perfect either. We should be accepting of other human beings with all their flaws and vulnerabilities. We are all fallible, and, we all heal and grow and we should honor each other’s complete stories as we live to tell the tale. This mindset is a precursor to practicing forgiveness. Let us not overlook people’s positives because of flaws but rather embrace them as a whole as it is the ‘cracks’ that give character to a person.
So, my friends please infuse the ‘crack’s in your life with love, and embrace a whole, new, beautiful you! We are all Kintsugi! A beautiful work-in-progress!
“There’s a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in“ – Leonard Cohen