How the Solar Eclipse Spread its Jam

The solar eclipse on Monday, August 21st, was a much-needed surprise for many of us. That morning, I facilitated a meeting with an executive team. We planned a morning break to view the eclipse. Our group walked nearby to the local library and stood among necks of all ages and colors, craned toward the sky. We shared protective glasses and helpful photography tips to capture one of nature’s most epic events.

INSPIRATION AND MEANING ARE ALL AROUND US

When I say surprise, it wasn’t that the solar eclipse itself was a surprise. The lead-up to this last-occurred-26-year-solar-event was pervasive. And, it had all the great makings of a thriller: geographic location combined with weather conditions brought a healthy dose of suspense. There was danger – would I burn my retina like my friend-of-a-friend’s brother shared on Facebook when 26 years ago he built a faulty view-box? Would these flimsy paper glasses really protect me? And, what if, an impish impulse that I’m so often prone to, took over and I snuck a peek with my naked eye?

The surprise started slowly…the sheer beauty of watching the moon blocking the sun (or about 75% in the east bay of San Francisco), was awesome. It was like many of those moments in nature, when we paradoxically feel small, and yet, a part of something big. The eclipse gave us an ephemeral moment where we realize that spilling coffee on our clean white shirt or a colleague taking credit for our ideas – isn’t really what life is all about.

But, the day was still young and the existential experience was about to get better. Around 1 PM, my meeting now over, I looked at my smart phone. There were delightful photos of throngs of people coast-to-coast smiling up at the sky donning those crazy-fun glasses. There were epic pictures with the most incredible pink-purplish-black hues I’ve ever seen as the eclipse made its way across our great country.

And for the grand finale, like the gift that keeps on giving – the eclipse gave us something we haven’t had much of these divisive months since November 8 of last year…UNITY.

WE ARE MORE UNITED THAN DIVIDED

On August 21, 2017, we were united as a country – all of us connected to something bigger. The sadness I’d been carrying since the travesty in Charlottesville, NC, and, its apoplectic aftermath — began to lighten a little.

LIFE PURPOSE AND FINDING MEANING IN OUR LIVES MAKES US AND THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE

Our unity reminded me that it’s even more important for us to all Live our Jam. When we Live our Jam, we have purpose and meaning. And, purpose and meaning bring out the best in each of us. Living our Jam allows us to make our mark, give back, and truly make the world a better place. I’m forever grateful to the eclipse of August 21, 2017, for Spreading its Jam and bringing us all together.

Photo cred: Fiona from Madison, WI. Thanks to her mom, Joanie Verucchi-Crump for sharing.

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