For this week’s Listening Post, I’d like to share with you an article I wrote in 2008. As you begin this new year, I hope it helps you connect to the preciousness of your time here. 

Thanks to Kaitlyn ( for this photo, which so beautifully conveys the feeling of the sheltering sky.  

I watched a movie a number of years ago that changed the way I view life. It was called “The Sheltering Sky”, based on the novel by Paul Bowles. The story followed a couple traveling across northern Africa. They had fallen out of love, and they took mortal, and ultimately fatal, risks in a desperate effort to find themselves and each other again.

Over and over, their choices poignantly convey the central theme of the movie: the awareness that events and experiences in our lives occur a finite number of times, and the stunning sorrow of forgetting this, then remembering it when it is too late.

I thought about this so much over time that I gave the theme a name: the Sheltering Sky syndrome. It has affected me deeply because the truth of it is so inescapable. Read more…