This past weekend brought gifts of simple pleasures: laughter of little children, a warm amber fire, reading on a cozy couch and watching the falling white snow. We spent our days in a cabin in a remote forest where the loudest sound was the cadence of your own breath. As we drove toward our destination, our daughter noticed the falling snow and the patches of white that became more frequent as we got closer. “Momma, there is snow!” I can still recollect the purity of her excitement. On Saturday morning, she sled down patches of white hills, sipped some hot cocoa, and warmed up by the fireplace.
As I watched her, I looked outside the window and observed what looked like white icing falling from the sky. Because the temperatures weren’t cold enough, the snow didn’t stick. But there were intermittent snow showers and every time I caught myself looking at the white specks and I felt comforted by its presence. The feeling of peace that simmered with genuine joy. It wasn’t forced or contrived or coerced. I’ve detailed my struggles with meditation and how I can’t sit still or am unable to sit in a room Indian style and just meditate on my breath. Those exercises cause me to grip tighter to my own restlessness. What I’ve realized is my medium for meditation is nature, my observations and my interactions with it. A run in the morning with white rabbits prancing alongside of me or sitting in the comfort of the sun on a cold day or watching snow from my window.
I believe that meditation can be different for everyone. For too long, I held on to the belief that meditation can only happen sitting with your back straight and chanting to yourself in the quiet. Because I couldn’t do this without feeling the tremors of restlessness, I denied myself meditation in other ways. What I’ve learned is there is freedom in meditation. You are the only person that can define it for yourself.
For me, the falling snow was a revelation. I find the most comfort in the glory of nature and its movement.
Image by JeffK
I know what you mean, my meditation is in nature as well. You painted a beautiful scenery for us. Glad all enjoyed the getaway time.
This is so beautiful. I’ve realized that too…that you don’t have to in a “lotus” position to meditate. Sometimes it’s just enjoying your surroundings.
I love how you describe your relationship to meditation; I know exactly what you mean. This line especially resonated with me and my own experience: “Those exercises cause me to grip tighter to my own restlessness.” Oh my, how I know this.
We have had a very mild winter here this year, but I too have found calm and comfort in the few chances I’ve had to sit and watch snow falling. Thanks for reminding me that the best meditation practice might happen when I least expect it.
You are right….. You are the only person that can define it for yourself…I find peace out in nature..I love being out in the ocean. The time you describe here with your daughter sound magical…so good to have special moments like that.
What lovely words and picture you have shared today, Rudri!
Thank you! I think finding God in nature is so easy that we often forget. The biggest challenge for us (mortals) is finding God in each other.
The glory of nature and its movement… Yes. Isn’t it interesting that this is what does it for me too even though I live in the big city? There is something poetic and profound about the glimpses of the natural world I find here.
The white cascading outside my door is night blooming jasmine at the moment—but somehow I felt a synchronous parallel to the snow you conjure into my mind. And with a chalice moon quickly setting over it all tonight…
“the purity of her excitement.” Isn’t is wonderful to watch our children’t joy? That is a meditation of its own.
Too true that meditation can take all forms. When we box ourselves out of things because the rules are too stringent to include our deepest self, who do we serve?
I put this quote on my fridge yesterday: “Love trumps doctrine every time.” Vicent Harding
For years the doctrine of meditation kept my soulful self at bay. Then I began to eek my way in, one step at a time. Walking is my way of meditating.