May 31

Rivers and rocks and
trees have always been
talking to us, but we've
forgotten how to listen.

Michael Roads


Today's Meditation:

I love this sentence and I love what it tells us, but I seem to forget the truth of the statement constantly.  And when I forget it, I'm not nearly as aware of the beauty and calming properties of the things that nature has given to us.  Sometimes, in times of clarity, I've been able to allow nature to wash over me with its messages of peace and acceptance and eternity; other times I can go for a walk in a beautiful natural setting and not hear any of the messages that the trees and rivers have for me.

I do know that my awareness of these messages is much stronger when I'm alone, too.  It's like when I'm having a great conversation with another person, and a third person gets involved--the conversation changes, and we've lost the connection that we had originally.  My connection with nature is much, much stronger when I pay close attention to it and try to be receptive to my surroundings and their messages.

There are messages in the rocks and rivers, and they're not just metaphorical.  As humanity travels down the road it's currently on, we pull ourselves further and further away from nature, and we spend more and more time in our houses, our cars, and the stores we shop at and the buildings where we work.  Time with nature is more of a luxury than a necessity, whereas when we think about it, it should be just the other way around.

I took a class outdoors to do some writing once, and one of the students said that she couldn't hear the birds singing at all.  She had never been in the woods, and she couldn't hear their songs because she had no practice in listening for them.  It's important that we not be that way, and that we keep our connection with this earth, which should be just as much a part of our lives as we are of its life. 

Questions to consider:

Why do most people lose their contact with the elements of nature?  What effects can this loss have?

How might we re-establish our contact?  What kinds of benefits would this effort bestow upon us?

What possible messages could rocks and trees and rivers have for us?

For further thought:

If only we know, boss, what the stones and rain and flowers say.  Maybe they call--call us--and we don't hear them.  When will people's ears open, boss?  When shall we have our eyes open to see?  When shall we open our arms to embrace everything--stones, rain, flowers, and people?  What do you think about that, boss?  And what do your books have to say about that?

Nikos Kazantzakis


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