Embracing your human-ness and human-mess

blog ads 2-05Michelangelo, the artist and sculptor, believed that the sculpture lived within the stone or the marble, already done, already whole, already perfect.

His job as an artist was to simply use his hammer and chisel to chip away the outer rock to reveal the magnificent perfect sculpture within. Think about that for a moment. He actually knew there was magnificence in there. And he knew that his job was to find and reveal it.

Now, I know that this is metaphoric… but think about this in relationship to people – to yourself and others. What would the world be like if you knew there was magnificence in yourself and in each and every person? And it was your job to find it. It’s radical to think like that.

Embrace your human-ness and human-mess
At our core we are magnificent… there is nothing that needs to be fixed or changed. Now certainly, by becoming more aware and more conscious, our behavior can certainly change. Our perspectives on how we view the world can change. There’s lots of things that can change, but what I know is that if we simply embrace more of our human-ness and more of our human-mess, it just goes way better.

While we are all magnificent human beings, perhaps some of us have some outer rock that covers us up a bit, hiding our full potential.

Imagine that your tools to work with here are a hammer and chisel – much like Michelangelo used. This hammer and chisel will not cause you harm in any way. Think of them as the “hammer and chisel of loving yourself” and they are used to reveal the magnificent sculpture called you. Pieces of unneeded rock fall away with their touch – easily and effortlessly. It is in the simple act of truly embracing and loving all aspects of yourself that the rock falls to the ground to reveal more of your true self.

Don’t judge the rock pieces as they slip away. Instead, be fascinated and curious about them. What a great opportunity to learn more about yourself. And isn’t that what we all long for – more understanding of ourselves?

It is your birthright to have a full, rich, abundant and fulfilling life
When you first see a newborn baby, notice what you experience. For me there is a sense of awe about what is possible. I feel it around children all the time. I see and feel their potential.

As we grow from a child to an adult, what happens along the way for most of us is that some “rock” gets put on us.

This rock may be in the form of old beliefs that we still carry; reactions to circumstances that occurred long ago; ideas that no longer serve; opinions and judgments that simply are not true; inherited ideas from teachers and family, culture, and religious organizations. They don’t mean to, but they keep throwing rock at us – if you will. And along the way, we decide that some of it is true and that some of it is not true. When that happens, we start to get lost… and confused. We can’t quite determine who we are or what we want anymore (now that isn’t true for everything; there are certainly beliefs and things that we have inherited that do serve us).

There might come a moment in life when you wake up… and realize that you have lots of rock on top of you. It happened to me.

When I was in college I told my parents that I was gay. At the time, I was dating a guy that I had fallen madly in love with (we all remember our first love, don’t we?). Things didn’t go so well with my Mother, and she promptly told me that I wasn’t to ever see this guy again, and that I would need to transfer to another college so that I didn’t. She then picked up the phone and called our minister, so that he could share with me all the reasons that I shouldn’t be gay.

For a period of time, I believed what my Mom and minister told me, and tried really hard to be the person they wanted me to be. Needless to say, that didn’t go so well. I was given this “rock” and was led to believe it was true. It wasn’t.

By simply seeing this as a bit of “rock” on top of me, and then taking my hammer and chisel and seeing the truth about myself – it lost its power over me.

And I learned to love myself a whole lot more in the process. I declared peace with myself and I’m happy to say that my Mom came around and we had a terrific relationship. Both my Mom and Dad were always incredible allies in my life – full of love and support and boy did they love Chuck, my partner of 20+ years.

Life is all made up
We are born as magnificent sculptures. Already perfect in every way. Already whole and complete. Divine Perfection. The possibility for the life we want to create is limitless.

And yet we all carry rock! As I like to say, welcome to the club of being human. Now, if we could all just start to look beyond that rock, and look within, imagine how our world would be. If we simply started to embrace our rock with the hammer and chisel of love, imagine the possibilities!

What would your life be like if you spent the time to reveal the magnificent sculpture inside yourself – as well as each and every person that you encounter?

Give this a try and let me know how it goes.


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  • Andrea Willets Reply

    Great post Rick! Thank you for sharing some of your personal story… and the way in which we get to change that story on any given day…

  • Esther Bailey-Bass Reply

    Hello Rick:

    I enjoyed reading your blog and learning more about you. Most importantly, the way you framed subject has a lasting impression and I’ll remember it and do the work to chisel away at my rock.

    All the best,


  • Lori Reply

    Fabulous blog Rick… Thank you for suggesting I read it 🙂

  • maria Reply

    Love this Rick, thank you!

    Michelangelo was gifted and wise… and gay I believe 🙂

    If you haven’t been to Rome or Florence yet, go soon!!


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