To know and be known

“I don’t care about the Grammys or nothing like that, just that the people know who I am.”

That’s what 72-year-old Arthur Dubois told NPR Weekend Edition host Scott Simon when asked about his hopes for his music. A growing number of people now know who he is — a hip-hop artist, one who began learning to make music just a few years ago!

His is a poignant response, and I bet most of us can relate to that desire to be known. Isn’t that what we seek? Whether by growing close to our families and friends, by sharing our ideas, by demonstrating our gifts, by making a splash in the media/social media, positive or negative. Or when we are simply being.

Maybe it’s because it’s Lent, and I recently had a cross of ash smeared on my forehead. Maybe it’s because the book I wrote on and off over the course of nearly a quarter century is finally coming out. Maybe it’s because it’s spring. But I’m struck by the brevity and the beauty of life, and of how much I miss by focusing more on “getting things done” than on being fully present to the opportunity of each moment.

Every moment brings opportunities to know those we are with and those we encounter more deeply, fully and with love.

“Beats by Arthur Dubois” from NPR’s Weekend Edition

“Known” by Tauren Wells (bonus track, just for fun)