My Merriam-Webster’s word of the day was navel-gazing. The word begged for further investigation.

Navel-gazing means “useless or excessive self-contemplation.” According to Merriam-Webster, mystics throughout the centuries have used the deep meditative practice of “omphaloskepsis.” However, if you are not mediating for serious reasons, and you are just absorbed in yourself, you are a navel-gazing.

We are becoming a world of navel gazers. We have neighborhoods, churches, and homes filled with individuals just focused on themselves. Unfortunately, we also have neighborhoods, churches and homes filled with individuals who are hurting and in need. But with our eyes firmly fixed on our navels, we can’t see their need, their pain, and their suffering. We walk throughout our day “bumping” into these hurting individuals, with their open wounds screaming in pain at our slightest touch. At their cry, we look up and wonder at their complaints. “People are so sensitive!” we exclaim…and look down again. Or maybe the question is, did we ever really look up?


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