That one is blessed and at peace
Who doesn’t hope, to whom
Desire makes no more loans.
Nothing coming, nothing owned.
Trans. by Coleman Barks
As I peered out the front door, I noticed that the front steps were covered with delicate blossoms. It seemed nature had given voice to the wind by leaving these sweet floral traces wherever a breeze had been.
The blossoms appeared as perfect as they had the day before when they were still clustered on the plum tree branches. Each rested unscathed facing skyward with ample room to spread out. Every floret was as beautiful as the next.
These blossoms needed no audience. In their simple grandeur, they had their own role in the broader life story. When the sun came, they opened and allowed the light to shine through their translucent petals. When the wind came, they let go and danced in the air until softly landing in their new spot. Then, they will wilt away taking their memories with them.
Like the great prophets and poets, the blossoms offered reminders that contentment is at the heart of each moment. They model the capacity to stay anchored in inner peacefulness while living within the whirls of the world. I hope that I might learn from the grace and lightness of these blossoms, and let go of what was, or what is yet to be. Perhaps you will join me.
This short practice invites awareness of balance.
- Lift one foot and rotate it in small circles. Then, place that foot down and lift and rotate your other foot around. Place that foot down.
- Lift and lower and your heels a few times.
- Walk at a slow even pace for twelve to fifteen steps.
- Enjoy the fullness within each step.
- Notice the sensations as one foot and leg move forward. For example:
- Notice the muscles involved, e.g., the thigh muscles, and how they respond as: the leg lifts; the foot comes down; and, the foot stabilizes in preparation for your other leg and foot to come forward.
- Notice as the heel of your foot comes down and then as the rest of your foot rolls forward until you have enough stability on that foot to allow your other leg and foot to come forward.
- Notice how the rest of your body shifts as you walk.
- Sync your movements with your breath. For example, one breath for each side: inhaling lifting your right foot and leg; and, exhaling placing, rolling and stabilizing your right foot. Then, repeat with the left leg and foot.
- Add a saying as you walk, such as, “I am loving the earth with my feet as I walk.”
Transition back into your day –
- Find a comfortable seated position and sit quietly for a few moments.
- When you are ready, return to your day.
The verse appears in Mala of the Heart: 108 Sacred Poems, page 30, edited by Ravi Nathwani and Kate Vogt and published by New World Library. Photo by T. Hirai. H E A R T H is posted each new and full moon. KateVogt©2021.
Kate’s Upcoming Virtual Class
Support Wisdom in Your Life,
5 Tuesdays, 3:10-4:30pm PT,
Mar 30-Apr 27
Please register online through College of Marin Community Education (course #4880)