Good morning Travellers,
It’s been a spell. I’ve been trying to figure out how I’d like to return to this space after this absence. At first I was buzzing along during this pandemic and then a rather momentous anniversary arrived and I retreated into myself. There was an unexpected tidal of emotions that I wasn’t prepared for and needed time to process…unexpected emotions are a pain in the ass, aren’t they? But that’s a different post for another time…
Today let’s talk about how the world remains filled with wonder despite everything. Beauty never truly abandons it’s post, no matter how awful the circumstances.
Every single night for the past few days, I’ve been hanging out here…
In the hammock, under the lights, sheltered by this giant creature.
I’m lucky to have such a tree in my backyard really….my house is actually surrounded by old trees, which I remember as a child wanting so very much, but never really having. It seemed to me in youth there was something about neighborhoods filled with giant trees that felt more authentically like home. Like the way you should grow up. Like the best version of an upbringing.
The real magic happens when you are lying on your back in the hammock looking up into the tree. That strand of lit bulbs is like an enveloped halo creating the illusion of inner illumination from within the layers of branches and leaves.
The lights catch the textures of the brown bark and all the sinewy limbs in a way I’ve never seen before. The leaves appear to be a greener green. There’s an array of shadows that wrap around and snake through the branches that I could stare up into for hours. And as I lie on my back, gently swaying side to side, staring up into the stories of the tree and how it contrasts against the night’s sky, I am filled with awe.
Just awe. And reverence.
And everything. else. is. gone.
If I climb into this hammock right before sunset, as a bonus, I get to watch the sky undulate from all the shades of blue into a inky midnight indigo that creates the illusion of velvety windows between the roughened branches. It’s reminds me of stained glass windows in a church, only better. And suddenly this feels like the place where every God would live.
And all I feel is awe.
And it’s pretty simple, I’m just one human, one strand of outdoor Target lights and a magnificent old tree.
And I was lying there last night thinking about how fortunate I am. Not as in money or anything to do with all the various horrible things going on in America. Fortunate to be able to take time and just be here. Being able to will myself here.
And for every one of you reading these words, I’m certain there is a version of this here near you right now. It’s waiting for you.
Because I think this kind of fortune is afforded to anyone willing to look for it. Lay in it. Open up to it. The fortune of being human with all our human senses. Being born into a world like this. I think we all have poet souls, we just don’t practice using them with any kind of discipline. We don’t look for awe anymore. And I’m not sure enough of us have the kind of reverence for life that’s gonna say us all in the end, do you?
I’m not saying awe would cure the world of all it’s ails, but I believe that those of us who are not at rest with ourselves seem to always cause unrest with others.
I believe in approaching every human you meet with curiosity and awe. Because we are each awesome creations, right? I know at times it may not seem that way, but each of us was once just a bundle of cells and now look at yourself and your fellow humans.
And as for outer world. Wow, it’s not just the tree. It’s the honeysuckle that grows nearby on my fence. It’s heady scent wafting through the air at night. It’s the feeling of the warm humid air on my skin and just being outside. It’s the moon and the stars in the sky. It’s the feeling of walking barefoot through the grass on the solid ground. Nature is the world that we were actually born into.
I know, I know, could I sound more woo-woo?
Just hear me out…
I find when I allow awe and reverence into my mind and being I start to think about what I really value AND how to grow intention and action from that place. It’s one of the most important concepts another human ever explained to me…
What do you really value each day? And do your actions support what you value. And are you impeccable with that practice, are you disciplined? Because great change and a great life requires great effort. Every damn day.
As I lay there each night gazing upward, I feel a sort of reverence that I think could in fact change this world…if we all worked on it everyday for what remains of our rather broken yet fortunate lives.
Go find awe.