So many of our hearts seem troubled these days. We’re worried about politics, the state of the nation, the trials of the world, the gullies of the universe. We’re pained about health, trapped children, money, jobs, relationships, pressures. We’re feeling our red hearts beating blue ribbons of sorrow and we’re struggling, how we’re struggling, to stay afloat and upbeat in a foggy world where the answers aren’t immediately apparent.
I see folks arguing everywhere. We’re pitting ourselves again the other, taking the swords of our opinions and clashing them against the swords of other opinions. We’re living in the world of our ideas and using our ideas as guns against each other. The bullets look like “My idea is right and yours is wrong and it’s all going to hell in a handbasket!”
We so believe that our view is the right view. Even when we’re bold enough to stray beyond our opinions into gray or murky areas of not-knowing, allowing, engaging, expanding…we’re still so often trapped in the fake news of conceptual thought.
What creates balance in times when our hearts hurt?
I’ve discovered that staying very simple and ordinary eases well-being. Living intimately close with the senses, with the real of what’s appearing. Dropping beneath thought’s volatile opinion and judgment and labeling and analyzing.
What lies beneath thought?
A flowing river of movement, a flowing river of delighted appreciation of life. Here’s a world where you unexpectedly add a teaspoon of pesto to two scrambled eggs. Here’s a world where a sliver of sunlight flickers through deep green trees. Here’s a world where your husband cracks a silly joke.
In these ordinary simple appearances lives joy. The world of the senses, unlike the world of thought which seems predisposed to tension, often sparks pleasure. Lake water splashing through toes, a kitten rubbing against legs, fingers typing on a keyboard, paint splashed against a wall, simmering chili, the thrill of footprints in beach sand.
A tea date with a dear friend. Splitting wood in the shade. The joy of summer’s freedom. Open windows! No mosquitoes. Cool fan air dancing through the room. A stranger’s smile. A loved one’s generosity. A new cookbook. An old ribbon.
It’s not about refusing to look and feel and see the woes of the world. They march on, those endless woes, through generation after generation. They accompany us with their flags promising peace but rarely fulfilling. These woes can bruise and burn and battle our hearts–and yet we can temper them with softness, with tenderness, with reminding ourselves of the myriad beauties whispering constantly all around.
Beauty daisy, beauty lake, beauty leaf, beauty laughter, beauty story, beauty song.
When the heart troubles too intensely, when eyes threaten tears, when the mind stumbles in confusion, perhaps it’s time to return to the simplicity, the closeness, the miracle of everyday ordinary happenings. To set the concepts aside for a while and sip lemonade. To lie in a hammock and watch chickadees. To celebrate the miracle of breath, toes, lips and ankles. To celebrate that we’re still ALIVE one more day!
To whisper to the woes: “Yes, dear ones, what you say may be true. But it’s also true that the moon rises so beautifully in the sky, rain nourishes the baby lettuce and a friend reached out today.”
Thank you world, thank you dear Universe.