I walk my dog every day. Okay almost every day. Most of the time I listen to a podcast. I generally feel like I’m aware of my surroundings while I walk. Every now and then, though, my sight is lost in my thoughts. My eyes don’t catch the new patch of moss because they see some imagined future or some moment already spent instead.
Today I just wanted to observe the now. However it was. I know, I’m just walking my dog on the path I take almost every day. But today I made a deliberate choice to stay with my senses and open them to anything that captures them along the way. My expectations weren’t grand. What grand things could I observe walking the sidewalks of regular old suburbia?
Well, first there was this blue. It was crisp, like the chill in the air. There was a light snowfall overnight. Scattered patches of tiny snowflakes blew across the surface of the street like smoke. Then like tiny whirlwinds as a car passed by.
A group of turkey vultures rode a rising stream of air over the treetops in the distance. There was a faint smell of woodsmoke and frost. When I turned down the hill, the sun made our shadows long in front of us and made tiny sparkles of the snow it touched. My dog found a branch with rolls of peeling bark that looked like an ancient scroll. He dropped it back down on the sidewalk, next to a tiny curl of chickweed peeking from a crack.
I heard the birds singing. A song I haven’t heard in a while. It was light and playful. I scanned the trees for the birds but they were too far away to see who sung. So I closed my eyes and gave my ears to them. The sunlight seemed to dance across my eyelids and I enjoyed the concert until a blue jay called an intermission. I opened my eyes to swaying branches weaving through the blue, leaves beginning to bud on every tip.
What did I observe?
This morning I observed promise. In the blue, in the sun, in the air, in the trees. In the bird’s song and in the vulture’s circle. I felt the Earth’s quickening. The pulse of its rhythm. It was much deeper than the promise of spring. It was promise itself. The force that moves us into spring after each winter, into day after each night, into the light from a buried seed. The drive behind all that is possible. It was out there today. I suspect it is out there everyday in some form or another. In our own nature too. Just waiting for our kind attention and loving consideration.
“If you inquire deeply enough into anything, you will arrive at the revelation that you the observer are intricately bound with that which you observe. At higher levels of frequency, you begin to enter the holistic domain of synthesis in which all phenomena are increasingly seen to affect each other. At a certain stage, the Gift of Inquiry must always lead you back into your Self.” – Richard Rudd, Gene Keys