Stupid question? Well, there are differences, which I find fundamental today and which - had I or my parents realised this earlier - might well have helped me to become a more fulfilled person in this life.

There are the obvious differences of size and physical ability, but that's not what is interesting. And what is interesting depends on what your purpose is in life. If you want to become rich and famous and successful, then the difference is invisible and uninteresting to you. If, however, you are interested in the development of conscious awareness, then understanding the differences can be hugely educational and beneficial.

 It's taken me 'till now to realise what a baby can teach me. In my specific case, could have taught me :-)

Consider this: when a baby arrives in the world, it has to instantly adjust from the protected environment of the womb, where Mum does it all, to suddenly a, to us now, unimaginably different environment with light and noise and having to instantly learn to breath. That is a quite staggering event. However, that newborn child knows nothing else. All that is what starts to come next. It is, however, equally true that this child is closer to it's inner life at that time, than to anything externally. And from that, I can learn a little bit of what I've lost; that simplicity of just being, full of trust, no discrimination except feeling okay or not feeling okay, which they know how to show. That's it. Everything else is accepted without being questioned or catalogued or anything. Baby is happy or not. Not means that this body is bothering it in some way, so Waaah! When the bother is gone, no more Waaah!

Baby also doesn't have an awareness gender, nationality, religion, station in life, roles, responsibilities, colour, wealth, tradition, rituals - although many will be subjected to some or all within hours, days, weeks, months, years, rest of life! And so we loose our freedom and become the slaves of the outside world and forget the freedom of the inside world. How sad! How unnecessary!

As the child grows up and learns more of our perspective, it still retains that simplicity for many years, before we drum it out of the child. Sadly, we fill it with so much nonsense, instead of realising that there was a time when we saw the world like that and it was great. What happened to us? Why did we let go of that and fill the world full of wonder with a world full of "facts" and in time lost the magic of that time. To me, we lost something important then, something worth putting effort into trying to regain, if possible.

I've moved a long way from that child-like simplicity, although externally I can at least say that I've stopped accumulating stuff quite some time ago. I also take part in the Swiss fetish of being the best recyclers in the world - don't believe me? Check it out. :-)
But de-cluttering my mind. Now that is a truly herculean task! I started on this path in 1975 and my experience is that it's not so hard dealing with the more obvious, surface things. But the deeper, lost in early childhood, that takes the rest of your life. But the important thing, is to keep at it - it's worth it. 
I like to compare it graphically with an image typical in the rural parts of Switzerland. The farmhouses typically have a cowshed and barn all under one roof with the main farmhouse and attached - on the side facing the road - is where the straw and dung from the cowsheds was stacked and then moved to where it was turned into silage. So this dung heap is years old, as old as you are now, in fact. And your job is to clean it. Getting rid of the big pile is relatively easy, with a pitchfork and a barrow, no problem. But then comes the rest, where it takes a bit more work, pitchfork no use. Finally, everything is gone. But is it? What are all those deep brown stains in the concrete? They've got to go too, I'm afraid. And that's why I say it'll take the rest of my life. But I'm good with that. It's about the doing.

It's not about becoming a baby where everything is done for me - I sincerely hope it won't happen like that - but it is about seeing the world in a simpler way, with less judgement, with less expectations, with less anger, with less fear and with more acceptance and even thankfulness. Anyone who knows me will have heard me say how thankful I am for the life I currently lead, here in safe Switzerland and truly, I am grateful. And those are nice feelings. So, I'm going to carry on doing what I do, to live as close to the moment as I can, so I can enjoy the maximum that moment contains. 

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