The Space in Which We Live
Lit only by the faint light of the setting sun, the house is peaceful and calm. I quietly move through the serenity of the space towards my favorite chair and sink into it. Closing my eyes slightly I sit back and simply “be” in the moment. As the troubles of the day try to disturb my time of quietude, I acknowledge them and gently set them aside for later. I feel each breath uniquely as it passes by the tip of my nose. My mind rests on the steady rise and fall of my chest. Once again, nagging thoughts come at me and once again, I assure them I will tend to them later and softly set them aside and return to being with my breath. With each inhale I envision love and light filling my entire essence and reconnecting me to the divine within. With each exhale I let go of any negative thoughts and feeling I have been harboring and watch them flow away from me, dissolving into nothingness. I do this until each breath is a give and take of love and light, bringing balance and a euphoric joy fills me. The more I sit with my breath the lighter I begin to feel as the blissfulness of a peaceful mind completely washes over me. As I conclude my meditation a little prayer, I was taught years ago, comes to mind, “May my mind turn to the Divine. May the Divine become the path. May this be for the benefit of all beings.”
As I open my eyes and look about the room, I realize there is something missing from my little routine. It is something I have overlooked even though it was right in front of me. A short time ago Andrea asked me to watch an episode of “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo” with her. I was very touched when Marie, upon entering a home, asked if she could take a moment to acknowledge the home. She knelt on the floor, inviting the residents to join her. They shared a moment of silent prayer acknowledging and thanking the home for all that it did for them. This little respectful act of honoring the home made so much sense to me. I don’t know why I didn’t see it sooner. We each bring our own unique energy to a space and when combined with that of family, friends and all of the experiences we have there, this energy grows and becomes a very real thing. People feel it when they visit your home, especially for the first time when they are open to the newness of the space.
When we first move into a house it is just that, a house. An impersonal collection of physical materials combined in such a way to be used as shelter. There is nothing about it that reflects us except the connection we felt which compelled us to buy it. Then the process begins. We paint the rooms in colors that appeal to us and surround ourselves with the things we love. Memories of family are shown in photos, treasures from a journey and all of the little knick-knacks which bring us joy. The house soon becomes a home, but not just because of the physical things we bring to it. It becomes a home because of the energy we create by living there. The light, love and laughter we share creates a vibration which is then reflected back to us. Marie Kondo’s prayer of thanks and acknowledgment is a wonderful reminder of what is precious in life and should not be taken for granted.
This prayer of acknowledge and thanks may be easily extended to the world around us. So many of us have become disconnected from the natural world that we no longer understand how to be in touch with it. We have forgotten how to feel the powerful energies of a place and the spirits who live there. Just because we don’t see them doesn’t mean they are not there. I understand there are many who will stop reading here and simply blow this off as a bunch of unicorn and rainbow nonsense. I feel this is unfortunate. Our failure to recognize the life forces and energies around us are the cause of much of our suffering. In our arrogance we, as a culture, have set ourselves above all the creatures of the earth and the earth itself. The consequence of this has been devasting to the environment, to the many species that are now extinct and many more that are on the brink.
By setting ourselves above and apart we grown away from the root of creation. If God, The Great Spirit, The Divine, or however you would like to label it is truly the creator of all things then wouldn’t it make sense that our path to the Divine should be in the living world around us, both seen and unseen?
With all the distractions of life pushing and pulling on me I have drifted from the spiritual path I was once intent upon traveling. Of course, it has been with me all along even if I had set it aside, it has just not been my focus. Over the past few years I’ve had time to reflect on the wonderful teachings I have received from Tibetan Lamas, Native American healers, and other spiritual thinkers and teachers whom I have had the good fortune to know. Through this journey of looking inward I re-discovered something I once knew on a profound level and felt deeply. We are each a spiritual being occupying a body in a physical world. This one lifetime is but one of countless lifetimes and we are all on a shared journey to once again realize and come home to our true divine nature. Sure, you have heard this before, but have you thought deeply about what it means and with eyes closed tried to feel it in the very depths of your soul? Have you considered the implications of us each being connected, on a very profound and sublime level, to others and the natural world around us?
Acknowledging the interconnectedness of all things and seeing ourselves as luminous beings of light, which you might say is our spirit or essence, is a mind-blowing thing to consider, however, realizing this may be what is meant by uniting with the Divine. In the spirit of start where you are, a gentle meditation and little prayer of thanks to our home may be a first step toward opening our eyes to the unseen wonders around us and a peaceful shift on our journey of spirit.
William C. Judge 2019