Did you get to walk under the glorious halo of lilac and wisteria in full bloom? Oh the mingled sight and scent of these wildly alive purples vine and stalk—it brings tears to my eyes in the remembering…it came and went so quickly. Just like life.
Am I taking and making enough time to just be right here in the glory of this stunning world? Am I fully living in the magnificence of right here—like the perfect-est example of sacred union ever smelled or seen; a lone madrone and old wisteria perfectly entwined into each other in exactly the way I long to merge with my lover…the white bells of the madrone flower, the soft cushion of the wisteria…and just over there is the meadow of pale yellow wild iris and the cat’s ears intermingled with small patches of bright purple vetch…all fleeting, all almost unbearably precious—so much so that sometimes I just can’t let it in.
How do we go about our daily lives acting as if banks and school and jobs are the most important thing when such beauty, such sensory magnificence surrounds us? We have to tune so much out, why do we tune out the gentle urgency of beauty, the deep and healing presence of nature, the remarkable gifts of just being with another soul?
Is this the how and the why of our destructive human actions?
We are all, in our way, actively endangering the lives of every ecosystem on the planet and our own future as a species.
Can it be because we cannot bear such beauty?
Because we cannot stand the way nature makes us wait?
Can it be that we feel so imperfect in the face of such perfection?
I am sincerely asking and I am sincerely suggesting a remedy:
Practice the forgotten art of paying attention. Being with. Tolerating unbearable beauty is an incredible tool for building both resiliency in the face of challenge, and care, simple, deep care, for “other”.
When so much is UP for revision– between action and non-action there is another way: being with. Being with is a potent form of love; simple, not easy.
Necessary yet not required.
To all of you lovers of life, hopers for a future, activists stopped in your tracks by overwhelm, I say this: step away from the urgent matters that keep you numb and away from the precious. Unplug, unwind, undo. Just stop.
Go now, lie down under a tree, stare at a flower, find a mushroom and watch it grow–attend to something small but precious right here, where you are. Do this today and keep doing it until your heart cracks open enough that you just can’t keep looking away while we kill ourselves and each other, until you cannot keep going at the insane pace you keep up, or care about the distractions that are taking you away from what matters most.
The courage needed to be with Life, just as it is, is a muscle. It is a muscle you want to strengthen now. Wherever we are going, our ability to be with is the key to reducing our suffering and to being able to be with others when they need us.
P.S. If you are inspired to read more of my writings, you can find them at https://lexidelgado.com/writings/
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