Thursday, August 17, 2017

Perfect Day

Sitting out on the back porch this morning I was thinking about the weather man saying the toady was going to be a perfect day. The sun was rising clear and strong in the East and the high wispy clouds were all that kept the sky from being clear and blue. Middle eighties and low humidity, that's what the weather man meant by a perfect day.


I know that today will be filled with lessons. It will contain plenty of times when I make mistakes, and when what is going on around me will be replaced by worry, doubt, and fear. I will have lots of opportunities to catch myself living in my head so I can practice coming back to my senses, returning to pay attention to what is actually happening in my life. For me, that's a perfect day. Just like yesterday, and just like tomorrow, but there's nothing wrong with a little nice weather.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Alarm Calls

Walking out the Eastern door of the cabin this morning, the first thing I heard was an alarm call from Chipmunk. Chipmunk's alarm call is a single loud chirp. Louder than a smoke alarm, it rings out across the Forest. And it's not just for Chipmunk's relatives. Anyone who can hear it gets the message, even me. And it's not a warning that says, “Run!” or “Hide!” That's because running and hiding aren't always the best ways to respond. In fact there is no one right response to an alarm call. Chipmunks message simply means, “Pay attention.”


Today, I will be listening to Chipmunk's alarm call and paying attention. In response I will do what makes sense for me.

Nature Boy/If I Had a Hammer Mash Up

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

7 Billion Geniuses- 7BG Basics -Work II

Quiet Morning

The gentle rain fell quietly as I sat on the porch with Birchy, the dog. Hawk was quiet, and the most apparent noise was Cricket, still trying to chirp the morning Sun through the clouds. Suddenly, Birchy stood up and barked. At the same time, something crashed through the underbrush to the North of the cabin. Whoever it was moved quickly to the Northeast and into the deeper woods. All I saw was a brief flash through the thick branches.

This gets me thinking about how things can seem to be one way, then suddenly change because of something I didn't notice. Was whoever was there trying to teach me to pay better attention, or is it that I was teaching them to be more aware?


Today, I will be remembering that sometimes the lessons aren't for me, and that sometimes I am the teacher and I don't even know it.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Moon

This morning the quarter Moon hung in the Southeastern sky trekking towards new. Looking up at it, as it glowed in the bright blue morning sky, I noticed how it connected me to a larger ark. It reminded me that there is something bigger than me and this town and this state and this country and this Earth. Bigger than our solar system and our universe and our cosmos.

And I am part of it. I am at the same time insignificant and vital. There is a part I play that no one else can play that weaves into the fabric of eternity, and yet the role is one of an infinite number of roles that intersect and effect each other in myriad ways. It is humbling, overwhelming, and energizing to know that I am a part of something so extraordinary, and yet it is as ordinary as breathing.


Today, I will be remembering to pay attention to the Moon as it reminds me of my connection to the infinite.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Love

Cooper's Hawk is getting better. That's the word from the Center for Wildlife. They are somewhat surprised, since his injuries were so severe. But yesterday morning when they came in they found him standing up and trying to perch.

Sitting on the back porch last night I was telling a friend this news. As I did, one of Hawk's family members showed up in a tree about forty feet away. I wondered if my creature cousin was listening to the story. Then I wondered if Cooper's Hawk knew how concerned his family was. Then I wondered if he knew about our love and concern.

Then it occurred to me. The possibility that someone could be disconnected from the stream of Love was based on my cultural experience. My culture teaches me that love is something that is limited, that must be earned, and that can be revoked. The Earth teaches me that flow of Love at the center of all Life is something that is given freely and without condition. It is infinite, and is never withheld. This Love is a force that one must choose to disconnect from.

The default position if Love is ON. From that perspective, Hawk would have had to disconnect in order to be unaware of the outpouring of Love going on around the cabin.

This gets me thinking about how often I am missing out on the Love that is flowing around me because I am choosing not to participate, or I'm distracted by worries and fears. Then I get thinking about how the easiest way to reconnect with Love is to start to send it out.


Today, I will be paying attention to when I receive invitations that distract me from the Love that is all around us all the time. I will be doing my best to send out Love so that I might reconnect with the Flow.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Butterfly Bush

Butterfly Bush was dead, at least that what I thought. I learned later that the entirety of the plant dries up every year and regrows in the Spring and Summer. Butterfly Bush is now seven feet tall and flowering.

This gets me thinking about how limited my vision can get. How could a huge Bush possibly grow back each year? I could see it will small plants like Lilly and Black Eyed Susan, but Butterfly Bush? And evens still, there is Butterfly Bush, towering over me, unaffected by my shortsightedness.


Today, I will be paying attention to the effects of my ideas about what is possible and allowing what is actually happening around me to widen my frame of view.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Mushroom

On the Eastern side of the cabin the land rises up to the stonewall that marks the Southeastern edge of the property. It is there that the Acorns land when Squirrel and Oak Tree send them to the ground. This morning a young Squirrel crept up the slope stopping near the top. Passing up Acorn, Squirrel settled down and munched on Mushroom.

There are some that say that watching what our wild cousins eat is a good way to know what is safe and what is not. There are others that say they have found our wild cousins dead from eating the wrong thing. Still others say that taking the chance on the often poisonous Mushroom doesn't make sense. They say the food value is to low to take the chance.

All this gets me thinking about young Squirrel, making choices and living life. I don't know why Squirrel chose to eat Mushroom in stead of Acorn. When I got a closer look, I found out that only the top of Mushroom was gone. Was the stem where the poison lived? I realize it is impossible to know why Squirrel does what Squirrel does. The best I can do is take it in, making my own choices living my own life.


Today, I will be noticing when I let my ideas about why other people do what they do get in the way of me making my own choices and living my own life.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Oak Tree

This morning I walked out the Easterner door of the cabin and heard an Acorn fall. “Squirrel,” I thought. Then I realized that this thought had shut down the possibility of other explanations. So I sat and looked up into Oak Tree. There was no movement. No Squirrel. Then I realized. Oak Tree lets go of Acorns on her own as well. All the Acorns aren't pulled down.

This got me thinking about how knowledge can sometimes shut me down to further possibilities. Sometimes thinking I know what's going on keeps me from staying open to what is happening in front of me.


Today, I will be paying attention to time when what I think is going on gets in the way of seeing what is actually unfolding in front of me.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Singing

Our Bird cousins start singing at around 4:30 am. I start singing around 6. I love to sing. It is one of my favorite things to do, but for me singing it is a practice. Practice is about learning. I learn by doing something over an over, tweaking and modifying things along the way toward what I can do which become what I will do next.


We get good at what we practice. Today, I will be paying attention to what I am practicing.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Learning to Fly

This morning the two remaining young Hawks were darting and diving through the trees just North of the cabin. With every move, each was teaching and learning, pushing the other to fly faster and better, pushing each other to improve. Better flying means better hunting and better skills of escape from their larger Raptor cousins.

This got me thinking about my Human cousins and the “In order to achieve what?”question. How do we as Humans ask each other to improve and in what direction? What does it mean to be a better Human and how do the actions of the Humans around me form the direction in which I go?


I believe that there is an essential unfoldment for each of us that leads us to living in our own unique genius. Today, I will be paying attention to the lessons I learn from my Human cousins and how they contribute to or distract me from my path.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Acorns

Up in the canopy of Oak Tree, Squirrel pulls Acorns and lets them drop to the ground. I have seen Chipmunk waiting on the ground. Chipmunk grabs an Acorn when it lands and disappears, returning later to grab another. Later still, Squirrel climbs down from Oak Tree and spends time burying some of the Acorns.

This gets me thinking about the mythologies I was raised on. Some are about what Squirrel does with Acorns. The story goes that Squirrel takes them all and hides them in a tree trunk. I learned that later, in the Winter, Squirrel would return to the stock pile and pick away at it through the cold months.

What I have seen is this. Squirrel buries some, eats some, loses some to Chipmunk, and spends a lot of time living life up in the trees doing other things. The idea that Squirrel diligently harvests Acorns to create a stockpile to live out the Winter seems more like a description of what Humans are encouraged to do. Prepare, prepare, prepare. We leave out the part about sharing and eating and planting and living.


Today, I will be paying attention to the possibility that some of the stories that tell me how I am supposed to live are based on thin descriptions of the lives of my Creature Cousins.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Uncertainty

The idea of rescuing wild animals always brings me a profound sense of uncertainty. I am never sure it is the right thing to do.

This morning as I walked out the Eastern door of the cabin, I spooked two of the Cooper's Hawks. They must have been roosting on the old swing set that stands there. In all the months we have been neighbors with the Hawks, we have never seen them settle on the swing set. Were they waiting for me?

I had to go back inside to do a chore, and when I returned they were perched in Cherry Tree, down by the pond. All this is in close proximity to where I eventually caught their brother yesterday. Are they looking for him? I know I have altered the course of all of our lives, but I am left wondering if I did the right thing.

This gets me thinking about acceptance. Whether I did the right thing or not, I did what I did. My actions live in the past and can not be changed. All I can do is make choices about what I do now.

Our Hawk neighbors are closer and louder than they have been in a week. I put in a call to the Center for Wildlife to check on their brother.


Now the Sun shines. Now the Wind blows. Now I am eating my breakfast. Everything else is a dream.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Overwhelmed

There is a box next to the wood-stove hearth. In it is a blanket. These are all that remains as a reminder of this morning's adventure with Hawk. I woke up to a bird squawk and a bang, and found Hawk belly up next to the screen house. We transported Hawk in the blanket covered box. Hawk is now at the Center for Wildlife in York, Maine.

During the process, I held Hawk in my hands, trying to be comforting. In those moments, Hawk did not look at me, nor did he seem comforted. I was thinking so many thoughts and feeling so much. I was overwhelmed.

This got me thinking about conversations I have had with folks about what to do in response to overwhelmed. I realized that in those moments when I was holding Hawk, there was no option but to be overwhelmed. Being overwhelmed was a testament to how much I cared and how concerned I was that one of our neighbors was in trouble. Being overwhelmed was not only unavoidable, it was important.


Today, I will be paying attention to times when I get caught up in the idea that certain feelings are feelings I shouldn't be having, and how those feelings are emblematic of what I stand for and hold dear.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Rock

I found Rock on the back deck this morning. Without much thought, I threw it over the side. Then it occurred to me that I had no idea how Rock got there. It hadn't been there yesterday.

This got me thinking about how many times I encounter something unusual in my life, but don't really take it in. I just toss it over the side and move on.


Today, I will be on the lookout for more experiences that show up in my life that are unusual. I will be resisting the impulse to toss then over the side before taking them in.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Maple Tree

Maple tree connects Earth and Sky just to the Northeast of the cabin. The top of Maple is dead. About ten feet up the trunk, Maple has sprouted new branches. In my culture, I am taught that trees stand blind and dumb, available to be harvested to fulfill my needs. The ability to spontaneously grow branches in response to peril seems to contradict this idea.


This gets me thinking about the mythologies I have been indoctrinated into that shape my expectations. Today, I will be paying attention through those mythologies to experiences that exist just on the other side of what they would have me believe.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

7 Billion Geniuses-Basics-Work

Climbing

Rock climbing is a process of finding good handholds and footholds. Sometimes, however the hand and footholds that are available aren't perfect. Sometime they aren't great, and sometimes they are rather marginal. Even so, there are moments when even the marginal holds will have to do. This gets me think about times when a possibility was lost because I was looking for the perfect handhold. Waiting for things to be perfect can get in the way of me taking a step.


Today I will be paying attention to times when waiting for things to be just so get in the way of me taking a step forward.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Freedom

For a moment this morning there was no Bird song, and it was silent outside. I realized that my ability to experience silence required my having heard sound, and that silence was more an experience of the lack of Bird song than the presence of silence. Everything I experience is a manifestation of change from what was.

This gets me thinking about how sad it is the we have a word for Freedom. We have this word because we have experienced existence without it and needed to describe what was missing when it was gone or what we had when it returned. It strikes me that most of my creature cousins would not need a word for Freedom, since they have never experienced life without it.


I am grateful for the Freedom I experience. Today, I will be paying attention to when fears or doubts or worries invite me to limit my Freedom, or the Freedoms of others.