Frequently I am guilty of being so focused on the distance to the goal that I forget to recognize the steps already traveled. Allowing time for reflection on accomplishment and giving appreciations where they are due is especially important with long-term or somewhat intangible goals like, improving a spiritual practice or my favorite- "getting my shit together."
For many months I've been working toward a more cohesive, grounded feeling in my everyday life. How do you measure the progress of a self-improvement intention? It's almost an impossible task to provide evidence of growth, yet failure to recognize achievements can be a serious demotivator. Today I pulled this wonderful reminder from my favorite intuitive card deck, The Blissful Knowing.
There is something magical about hearing the faraway song of geese carried on the wind as they make their seasonal pilgrimage high above my world. They call to my spirit. I allow the sound to spiral around me and lift me, just a moment, before taking my breath away. I'm surprised to find my feet still on the ground, in exactly the same place, yet I feel changed. I am gifted these feelings when in nature, but as I plod along day to day, I forget this.
Yesterday my daughter was invited to an activity at a local lake. I found myself needing to spend several hours there, so I packed a beach chair, cooler, hat, books, and iPad. Laden like a Sherpa, I lumbered my way down to a lonely section of beach and set up camp. Next to my chair I found a large, perfect feather. Nearby, enjoying the afternoon on the tip of a submerged log, were three lovely geese. I watched them for awhile before moving closer to get a better look. Disturbed by my presence, they unceremoniously swam off, so I returned to my chair and stared out at the lake, admiring its beauty while watching a few waves gently lap at the shore when a boat would pass in the distance. Presently I noticed the sounds from the few families also enjoying this park on a Wednesday afternoon. And I began to wonder why I hadn't done this before and why I didn't even know about this beautiful spot so close to my home of 15 years. Why was I missing this, why was my family missing this, and what else was I missing in my own backyard?
But it's ok- it's not too late to re-invite the splendor of nature to touch my heart. The beauty of life has not passed me by forever- I've merely been distracted. And now- I've been reminded. I can enjoy a view, or watch the waves, or listen to the song of the geese and refill myself with joy everyday.
When we change our thoughts, we change our vibration. When our energy and vibration have transformed through an experience, that changes the collective energy of the world. Just a moment's experience can have a positive effect on the entire universe. That is powerful.~
One of the best pieces of advice I ever got was not even offered as advice. It was just a comment on life from a regular customer who hadn't been in for a while. I told him that I was glad to see him and asked where he'd been. When he told me that his wife had died, my heart sank. I had no idea what to say to this man, 40 years my senior, who'd just lost his wife. I told him how sorry I was and asked how he was doing. "I'm ok," he said. "In marriage, you have good years and you have bad years. I'm just glad that if she had to go, it was in a good year."
This has been a crucial tidbit of information for me over the years. It applies to all aspects of life, not just marriage. But more than helping me through bad years, it's increased my gratitude for the good years. We must take the good with the bad- always there is balance.
For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction - Newton's 3rd Law of Motion
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven - Ecclesiastes 3:1
a work in progress, like me, followed by a short reflection.
Am I living? I struggle to remember to ask myself.
I go through the motions.
I run a circular gauntlet
Throwing balls in the air
Racing to return to the same spot-
A juggler -
Or, perhaps, The Fool
Gesticulating in jest -
A masked dance of mirth,
Cloaking the despair
Of folly of my own making.
Verily, verily I say unto you,
Life is for the Living! Carpe Diem!
The muffled shouts from my soul's Crier die
Smothered by rubble,
My spirit, in ruins....
In my dream
I lie in the tall grass
The wind whispers the scent of the sea.
A bell tolls in the tower high behind me.
Faceless maidens wash my arms,
Covering me in fresh cloth and
Carry me inside a mound on the hillside
Placing my body on a stone slab.
I am dead -
Wrapped in a shroud
Yet, Death's perfume evades my nostrils.
Several torches still burn
Faintly Illuminating the remains of the Forgotten.
The entrance to my tomb
Remains unsealed -
I wish to awaken,
Emerging from Death’s womb
Harbingering Life in Spring
While coveting the power of stillness -
The Juggler, my willing sacrifice to
Reflection on The Juggler-
My whole life I felt like as soon as one part of my life was going well, some other piece fell out of place. I was constantly running from one facet of myself to the next, continually disappointed in myself because I could never get all my shit together at the same time. I was riding a warbling wheel and trying to balance it from the outside by redistributing the weight. However, balance comes from the center, like core strength. By turning inward through meditation, we are able to shed our burdens, our imbalances, aligning with our true selves and finding peace within. ~
Previously I had been thinking about change as a metamorphic process, perhaps because I’m well past being a seed. But just like the transformations happening while hidden in a cocoon, look how much germination happens before we see a small green plant shoot above the ground. And then, little by little, everything grows at the same time - roots, stem, leaves- but each at its own rate. Even mature trees have new growth. Parts get broken off or die gradually, yet the tree doesn’t seem to mind. It continues to live and grow and change with the seasons. It takes a rest period each year, turning its energy inward to rejuvenate. This is all perfectly normal. I don’t know why it took me so long to realize this.