Franciscan theologian John Duns Scotus developed the philosophical notion of haecceitas, the idea of particularity or “thisness.” This is an important concept to Franciscans, as the uniqueness of each thing within creation can help us to open our eyes to wonder: to God’s goodness and love permeating our lives and our world.
When apathy lingers, when monotony strangles pursuit of meaning,
When another day feels aimless, empty, reactive,
Open my eyes to wonder, to the detail of creation,
to particularity, to uniqueness,
to this masterpiece we call our home,
to grace and goodness somehow rising in the emptiness—
as vibrant color permeates a once-gray world.
Consider pausing throughout your day to notice the uniqueness of creation around you. Maybe you will find it in the personality of a coworker, the smile of a stranger, or the particularity of a tree or bush as you walk around your neighborhood. As you gaze upon the “thisness” of creation, allow an awareness for beauty to rise up within you.