As I go about my office work days, my body rebels against sitting at a computer station in the form of a sore back and a right arm that feels slightly disconnected from how it should. I would rather be sore from chopping wood or planting an acre of kale by hand. I am reminded of how far away from our roots we have gotten as a human species – and how much we need to remember those roots. We click away on computer keyboards and scroll through information on touch screens hour after hour, day after day. There are good things about technology, to be sure. We can stay connected and get information more easily than ever before. But we also lose something if we let technology take the reins –when we let it dictate our choices and our day-to-day actions. We read about nature online instead of taking time to walk in the woods, we send emails in greeting instead of knocking on a door, we listen to recordings of soothing nature sounds to relax instead of opening the windows, and we look up weather conditions on a news website instead of stepping out the front door to experience them in full. We watch television or play video games instead of having conversations or living our own adventure. How strange we must look to other creatures.
Do we notice that our behavior has gotten so out of touch with reality that we destroy the elements that keep us alive? Some of us do. Some of us do, but keep living like we always have. Some of us are preoccupied. Some of us want to rule the world. I wonder what it will take for us to get back in touch with the part of ourselves that IS nature, the part that yearns to see its unique weave in the tapestry of creation. I wonder if I notice my weave enough. I wonder if noticing can heal what’s broken or unbalanced. I wonder how I can take the noticing and use it to live in a way that is truly woven deep into the soil that nourishes, into the air that breathes, and into the water that keeps intention flowing into being.
I wonder how to remember to be the water.
I can hear birds chirping and frogs singing to each other this morning. Life outside is in full swing as creatures of all sorts revel in the newly warm temperatures and in celebration that everything is waking up with the arrival of a new season. There are seed potatoes sprouting in a box by my feet, waiting to be planted and broccoli seedlings outside the door getting used to the natural air before moving to their soil bed in the garden. Wildflowers of brilliant blue and bright white are popping up through old leaf cover in the woods, and the great blue heron has made his homecoming to the shores of the lake. After a winter that was punctuated with more snow and more cold later than we wanted, spring has embraced the landscape again.
Despite the seemingly constant hum of industrial progress, and the drone of lack and longing that rides a fine line between illusion and reality, the essence of the earth persists at casting shadows of joy all around us. If we look closely, we can see the weaves that connect everything, and the rhythm. And we can see the light that radiates when each piece of creation’s mystery adds a note to the hymn that is being written.
We could perhaps all benefit from remembering to be the water.
How do you stay intentional about weaving nature into your lifestyle?