Inner Mind


September 2011

Living in Paradise

Dear Friends,

I live in the country in an area of fields and forests and lakes.

The other day, when I went outside in the early morning, there was not a hint of wind, the air was still. The late summer heavy dew glistened in the first rays of the sun. The lush green of the fields and trees provided a background for flowers blooming and blackberries ripening. Birds and insects were using their voices. I could hear loons and bluejays, hummingbird and song sparrows, bees and flies and dragonflies all going about their business.

As I sat there, being in the present moment with awe in my heart at the incredible beauty of the natural world, the thought that came into my mind was that I am in Paradise.

When I look at this experience of Paradise, in retrospect, I see that, after a good night's sleep, I am physically comfortable in my body, unconditionally loving and accepting of myself and my intimate people, at peace with the challenges of my life, immersed in my soul's growth processes and thus able to simply be in the present moment with my surroundings that are ineffably beautiful, vibrantly alive and thriving.

Toad hops in my garden as I look after the plants. A snake lies curled under my sheep manure bag, when I lift it. Red tailed hawk rises from the field as I watch. Ants make a path to and fro from wormwood. Bees buzz in the blooming thyme. Porcupine grazes on the lawn, ignoring human activity around her. Bats zigzag through the night air. Chipmonks and sqirrels and crows and pigeons and mourning doves all feel comfortable in this Paradise on Earth, that encompasses all the Beings that choose to live here.

I know that there are other times in my days when I am in the fray of human environments and activities, that Paradise is the last possible description I would consider.

Yet, it is because of the stresses and challenges of my human processes that I am able to perceive and value Paradise when it presents itself into my life. Being wet/cold/hungry/uncomfortable, caught in traffic/frustrated/misunderstood/impatient/dramatic/tired are all part of the fabric of life.

But that only makes this moment of experiencing Paradise all the more precious.

The art of living in Paradise/living in wellness is not about being there all the time (I suspect that would get boring), but rather about keeping thoughts in perspective and balance: giving energy to what you want to encourage and experience, acknowledging and understanding the rest and letting it flow off/away/out/release. To cultivate that inner self-comfort of peace and stillness that allows special experiences to happen.