Last weekend on our travel to the Catskills we sat by the waterfalls to enjoy the scenery and capture a few photos. It was a perfect spot to meditate and enjoy the peace of nature. No cars, motorcycles, or planes flying overhead. It was wonderful!
It always amazes me when traveling, or even close to home, that there is beauty all around us and some never take the time to discover what they are blessed with. Our minds race throughout the day. Many of our thoughts we would never share with others. Can you imagine what they would think if you shared every passing thought?
Many times visitors to a location will ask a local if they enjoy visiting the ocean, park, nature preserve that is within a short distance of their location and the local will share that they have never visited. Even though they have lived in the same location their entire life. In my hometown of Stillwater we are within a ten minute ride – longer if you ride a bike or walk but doable – of the Saratoga National Historical Park. There are roads which bring you to the post markers or trails that lead through the wooded areas. Many of the local people in surrounding areas have not spent any time exploring this historic site. This is a quick visit for those living in Schuylerville, Saratoga, Greenwich, Stillwater, Mechanicville and other localities. I am always surprised to speak with others at meetings or trainings who have never heard of this location or have heard but haven’t stopped to visit. While living in Long Beach, CA I had the privilege of living across the street from the Pacific Ocean. Every morning I woke to the view of the beach and would roll out of bed, throw on my sneakers and head over before work. You would think the beach would have runners, walkers and beach lovers every day – it didn’t. Some mornings I would pass one or two people, mainly dog walkers. In the evening I would be back for another walk and the same thing. On weekends, during the middle of the day the beach had many visitors in the summer months but I was surprised that those living within a very short walk didn’t enjoy the experience. This truly surprised me.
In my own backyard I am fortunate to walk into the Albany Pine Bush Preserve. There are trails throughout the area that can be reached on many roads throughout the area. On any given day, three or four cars will be parked along the road with people taking advantage while minutes away parking lots of the two large malls are packed, even on a nice sunny day such as today. Music blaring, signs throughout the mall, fast food, overpriced items all to entertain and keep the mind filled with chatter. Where do you spend your time? Does it bring long-term peace and happiness? Are there local areas to visit in your community that visitors are attracted to but you have not visited? Maybe today is the day to get out in nature and explore your community. Many of these natural areas are free to visit. How can you release your anxiety, stress, worry, and fear today? Get outside and listen to the birds singing, the frogs croaking, the trees rustling in the breeze. As I sit and type this post on my porch I hear several birds in the tree nearby singing love songs.
Our minds are like a snow globe – once shaken they can only calm if left to rest. Or, like water in a pond stirred from a turtle sliding in from along the edge or a foot entering into the mucky depth disturbing the surface under the water. You can’t see anything until the water is left at peace for a while, then water clears and you can see the bottom once again. Our minds are like this as well. When we are constantly thinking about something that brings worry, fear, or anxiety our thoughts become cluttered. It is through the practice of meditation and mindfulness that we allow our minds to be still and clear. What will arise from the depths of that quietude are creative ideas and direction after the meditation or sometimes while in the meditative states. Yes, these are thoughts as well however they come from a place of loving kindness without worry, fear, anxiety, or guilt. If you have important decisions to make and are deciding from a place of worry, fear or anxiety – STOP. Wait until your mind has time to rest and then make the decision form that place of peace and rest. It will make all the difference. Are you getting ready to send an email to a friend or coworker – STOP. Once again, wait until you are in a place of peace because the tone and result will be totally different.
When you take the time to unplug from the cell phone, radio, computer, television and sit in a state of quiet and peace your entire body is allowed to relax along with your mind. You get out of our own way and open to our inner voice that has been drowned out by all the chatter. When you take the time to enter this state of flow you get in touch with your inner wisdom. Isn’t it time you cherished yourself enough to allow your inner voice to be heard. Who knows what you may hear and how this may change your life in a positive direction.
Let’s start them young. Spend less time in the malls, at regulated sports activities, and magic parks with children and more time teaching them how to listen to their inner wisdom and make their own magic. Let them explore and find their creativity on their own. Teach them to meditate and find that inner peace to carry with them into adulthood. Imagine the lives they will live if you do.
If you are unsure how to meditate and would like some guidance, please send me an email. I provide one free 30 minute session and can share tools to help you start the process. If you are experienced and have witnessed results please share.
Be the light for those who follow. Love and Light!