The Wisdom of the Universe in a Blade of Grass

All of the wisdoms of the universe are held within a single blade of grass. If you look carefully enough you can see this in your minds-eye.  We are afloat an infinite sea of vibrating strings. Everything we know and everything we don’t know. Everything we are and everything that is, was or will be, is connected–It is all part of we. And in that lie the wisdoms of the universe.

 

It has taken me most of my life to realize this something that I knew instinctively as a child but had dismissed or hidden from my conscious mind.

Ever listen to the silence between everything else?

When we grow to adulthood we leave behind our childish ways, we assimilate and integrate with society, many of the beliefs and instinctive truths we held dear as children are washed away with grown up ” rational” thought and much of our free thinking and creativity is lost at sea.

 

People look for answers, they have a need to convince their rational minds what the heart already knows. They flock to gurus and philosophers and there are no shortage of those who have all the “answers”. In actuality,  the best guru is a child who remembers the universal truths that are born inside every single one of us.

 

Lovely Pink Anemones from my mother’s garden.

I remember spending time in my mothers garden; lying in the grass, and the way the grass smelled and how the breeze gave me goosebumps. And how the trees swaying made shadows dance across my eyelids.  I remember watching the clouds pass by so effortlessly.  It seemed the moments lasted longer and I savored each one as it melted into the next.

I remember how connected I felt to everything in the universe and this was no big revelation to me.  I did not need to be taught this, I don’t think any of us need to be taught this.

I knew that everything within my vision;  from myself and my cat and the bird he was eyeing in the tree, to the ant and the worm and to the tree itself. I felt connected to the very soil I stood upon and to the sky over my head and every person and all life on this planet. I would see everyone as a friend.  And I thought this until I was about 4 or 5 and then something told me, I don’t know what, but something told me to put a lock on those ideas and stick them in the back of the closet where I would throw my old toys. There they would stay until my mid thirties, when I started to wake up again.

It was in those dark , still and silent nights when my mind could stay quiet enough to hear the whispers of my soul that I began to catch glimpses of the light. I learned the more that I listened the more I would hear. I also learned right off the bat that most of what I did hear at that time in my life was not good. My heart was sad and my soul was lost and lonely.

It is in reaching a bottom of sorts where I found the will to climb out. I quit a 20 year addiction to alcohol.  I returned to the grass and the trees and the tiny daisies in the lawn. I found my connection with nature was returning and I healed in the power of that wonderfulness.

Everything I have learned so far, through the words and actions of others, though raw experience and through the whispers of my very soul, have put me to where I am now and the realizations that continually dawn on me, leading me to believe that what is the most important is the intangible and that we are truly are intangible beings in a tangible world. And that what we seek is truly inside us.

This is just a beginning of sorts for me. A rebirth. A getting back to where I need to be. I have returned from an extended break from writing and blogging. I have much to write about. I am excited and happy to be back and to reconnect with some kindred souls ones I have met along the way and new ones as well.

~Nancy

 

 

Tiny wisdoms found here and there 

 

“I celebrate myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.”
― Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass

 

I’ve traveled all around the world to see the rivers and the mountains, and I’ve spent a lot of money. I have gone to great lengths, I have seen everything, but I forgot to see just outside my house a dewdrop on a little blade of grass, a dewdrop which reflects in its convexity the whole universe around you.
~Rabindranath Tagore

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.
― Thich Nhat Hanh

 

I would say that there exists a thousand unbreakable links between each of us and everything else, and that our dignity and our chances are one. The farthest star and the mud at our feet are a family; and there is no decency or sense in honoring one thing, or a few things, and then closing the list. The pine tree, the leopard, the Platte River, and ourselves-we are at risk together, or we are on our way to a sustainable world together, we are each other’s destiny.

Advertisements

The Weight Of Things

 

 

tree leaves autumn color

 

An elderly neighbor of mine passed away last autumn. I didn’t realize this until the following spring when I saw people pull up in front of her little green house on the corner to carry away her things. First it was the chair, then a couch and a tall lamp.  This came as a surprise as change tends to do. Abrupt and unexpected. She was old and frail and we’d seen less and less of her over the years.  Her son Lenny lived with her and tended to the maintenance of the house and yard. He was a shy and gentle soul who never let anyone get to know him except for the neighborhood cats, which he attracted in droves.

As neighbors go they were my favorites. I like shy and gentle people, the elderly and cats.  I was a bit pissed at myself for not knowing what had happened for almost 6 months.

MM suggested we go over and take a look at the obvious to us now, estate sale that was happening at the little green house on the corner.  I admit I was curious as I had never been inside. I wondered where her son was as I got on my shoes and we headed over.

 

 

P1020265

Half the neighborhood was there sprinkled among the other shoppers.   I was stricken at first at how cramped it was, full of people pawing through Angie’s things. I felt funny. I didn’t know her all that well but now I felt sort of protective of her stuff and her memory. I took a quick tour of the downstairs bedroom. I saw her hairbrushes and clothes for sale. It seemed all too intimate, all too strange and all too much.

 

Oh I had spoken to her several times over the years exchanging cards at Christmas and the like. I knew she had lived there for over 40 years and had raised a  family, watched most her children  move away and start lives of their own. I know her husband had died there. I know that she seemed somewhat hard and no nonsense. I know that my preconceived notions about her had allowed me to keep her at arms length like I do with most people.

 

But now it was so different, so final..

 

The rooms were tiny and jam packed with various things. It was overwhelming right away: there was so much. It was difficult to take it all in. The first thing I zeroed in on was a set of commemorative dishes priced at $650 dollars next to a tin of cocoa marked “new” and on sale for one dollar.  Along with old dishes and salt and pepper shakers shaped like Minnie and Mickey, there was a package of paper towels for sale and paper napkins.  Who buys this stuff? I wondered to myself and more importantly who sells this? I was tempted to open the refrigerator to see if there was some old milk for sale but decided against it.

 

old toys

 

MM beckoned me up the flight of steep creaky stairs that led to the upstairs bedrooms, all small and filled to the brim with stuff. Old holiday decorations and kids toys  neatly arranged in boxes. It was hard to believe they had hung on to these items for so long.

The atmosphere was oppressive, it was thick with oldness and stagnation.  I could  feel the 40 years of history there.  This was once a place of life and hopes and dreams and now only lost memories remained. It was as if the remains of a sweetness had stagnated and turned acrid; buried under the heaviness of the years.

It wasn’t long before I had to get out. Needless to say I didn’t buy anything, I wasn’t planning to.

 

want graffiti_geotagged_consumerism_442716_o

 

 

Time passes so quickly. It’s too easy to just go with the flow and let circumstance carry you along.  I am in the midst of that and I sensed my neighbor was too but only she had floated farther than I…and stayed too long, accumulated too many things with too many links to the past. So many that there was scant room for anything or anyone else.

So much stuff with so many memories attached to them. It’s easy to do; hang on to things. I too have that pack rat mentality. Sometimes you never know when you may need something.

 

More importantly, these cherished bits of happiness; intangible memories encased in tangible objects enable us to hold a piece of the past. It seems holding on to these things brings us closer to what we miss.  It’s a little silly when you think about the significance we give to objects, it’s not logical.  But who is logical?  Especially not when we love someone. It wasn’t until I became a parent that I truly understood how important mere objects can become.

 

I have limited myself  a few items, tokens of memory, attached to a person not so much as a time. A few items: a Buddha statue of my father’s and his namesake tree in the front yard.  A tiny doll my teenage daughter played with when she was younger, The blue striped blanket my son came home from the hospital with. I have kept the odd concert ticket, a tiny figurine from when I was 4. There isn’t much.

 

Birds-Flying-above-the-Sea-at-Sunrise__56028-1024x682

I’ve been ruminating on this experience all summer. It’s prompted me to re think the way I’m living my life.  How I hang on to needless things. The tangible and the not so tangible. Outdated stuff, old baggage, outgrown ideas and ways of thinking.  How possessions can possess the possessor and how little by little all this stuff we accumulate weigh us down… keeps us from flying.

 

 

Perhaps my neighbor missed her chance to fly, maybe her son being thrown out of the nest so late is in flight now.  At any rate we all must go someway, somehow.  I ponder this as I watch my neighbor’s tree come down foot by foot until it’s gone and I realize it’s been blocking what I see now is a great view of the mountains.

 

~Nancy

 

 

“Letting go gives us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness. If, in our heart, we still cling to anything – anger, anxiety, or possessions – we cannot be free.”
Thích Nhất Hạnh

 

freedom shadow butterfly woman sunset

 

Related Articles

.

 

In My Life / Jake Shimabukuro

 

♦