“To be or not to be, that is the question.” ~William Shakespeare
I have been giving a lot of thought lately about how to get away from my constant thought that I always need a “to do” list. There is a piece of my personality that almost doesn’t feel worthy unless I get to the end of a day and feel like I have accomplished something. I have had a lot more time lately to come up with many projects within my house that have been waiting for me…and somehow they seldom worked their way to the top of my lists. I have enjoyed some satisfaction in getting some of them done, but I knew I needed that vital balance of mind, body and spirit. I needed sleep and exercise. Until this past week when the weather finally warmed up and I realized I could BE outside…I began to celebrate. As my brother so wonderfully put it, “I can play in the dirt again, yahoo!” That got me to thinking about my endless lists.
During my daily meditation I am reminded that my life isn’t about what I’m DOING or not DOING. My life is about…BEING. It is about being the very best version of myself that I can BE. It all comes back to that age old question. Why am I here?
Nature somehow always models for us if we pay attention and keep ourselves in a state of being. So, I loved this idea of making a list of things I want to Be. It helped me get comfortable knowing NEW BEGINNINGS will be surfacing for all of us soon and it would be an awesome time to ponder being. After all I don’t know what new beginning will be coming for me. It’s that unknown…so instead of fearing anything new, I’ll know things I want to be.
Nice start and I immediately wanted to add some more to this list. My mind began wandering to all the ways I can be happy and loving. I wrote a long list and I felt calm. It was a wonderful exercise for me. Writing to all of you makes me happy. Walking outside in my bare feet viewing nature around me helps me smile and even laugh. We had a few beautiful days to be outside working, and I found that I could put myself into a state of being while I pulled weeds out of the sand by the water. I even started huge laughs as I listened to the frogs near me with their endless mating calls! I know laughing is extremely healthy for us.
Walking helps us be healthy. I’ve learned how to put myself in a state of being instead of planning out my next grocery list or meal. It’s amazing how detailed I look into nature. But, my pictures are pitiful because as I move closer to a small animal or the male cardinal I found staring at me, good-bye moment of being!
My friend Lois Mulder takes the most amazing pictures in nature, but I know she has a huge lens so she doesn’t have to get close. She posted this one of a bud opening and I really had to look to realize it wasn’t a snake and look at the reflection in that drop of water. WOW…nature at its best! A beautiful way to be...it helped me think of ways to be awesome in some of my daily habits and routines. Yes, I can be in a state of being as I go about my day.
Pretty soon I was seeing these photographs as a way to just be in nature when I couldn’t be out there on very rainy days. My Reconnective Healing friend is always finding unique flower pictures, so I went to them. Each picture of a flower was reminding me that it “looked” like an animal! I did a double take several times realizing how clever plants and animals can be when we take time to really look and be with them.
Adaptations in nature happen as a protection mechanism for survival. As humans we are sometimes in survival mode and also very clever. We can seem to be one thing and yet show a very different behavior to others around us.
This flower seemed to be trying to squeeze into a very tight place, kind of like what we do with our emotions sometimes. As I pondered my reaction to this photo, a myriad of emotions surfaced that I hadn’t realized were close to my heart on that day. A healthy exercise as I was in that state of being. I just had to have a good belly laugh looking at the hidden face in this unique flower. I knew it was reminding me of someone…put away that thought!
And then this photo reminded me of the recent zoom celebration in honor of Marj’s birthday! Being ever grateful for her presence in my life, the thoughts brought peace and calm in a new and unique way. My mind wandered into those many birthday occasions we can all remember in delight that have passed through the years.
I know that my inner thoughts emerge from my soul in that quiet, unique time during meditation. But, our eyes are usually closed. Meditation teachers will suggest that once you reach that deep state of meditation, opening your eyes is a good way to practice keeping the calm state in the body while adding one of our senses. As I stared at the playful nature of this unique plant…it reminded me that sometimes emotions emerge during meditation that we try tell ourselves…go away, I don’t want you right now!
It’s all so perfectly natural. And it was helping me realize we can set a difficult emotion aside for that moment…but unless we analyze why it’s there at a later time, it just keeps coming back! I know this, and yet it was a good reminder for me.
A huge rush of love moved into my body as I pondered this unique flower reminding me of love birds! In my state of being I pondered my own love life with my husband of 49 years. We celebrated our anniversary last week and it brought many emotions out in me. I focused on all the new beginnings my husband and I have gone through and there are MANY…and not always pleasant ones! But, alas…in this state of being the emotions emerging were beautiful. Love…creates new beginnings for all of us.
We are sending OUR love to all of you for quiet reflection in YOUR life! Remember, you are a totally amazing and unique creation of God, just like every one of us.
For Reflection: On Saying Yes to New Beginnings
“Our very cells respond to the thoughts we think. With every word, silent or spoken, we participate in the body’s functioning. We participate in the functioning of the universe itself. If our consciousness grows lighter, then so does everything within and around us. This means, of course, that with every thought , we can start to re-create our lives. In saying yes to new beginnings, we begin to bring them forth. “
~ Marianne Williamson From A Year of Miracles, Day 25