AWARENESS BY DONNA DAY © 2022
This week’s Peace Nurturing Practice is Awareness. We choose to be fully present and aware in all we do. When washing dishes, we wash dishes. We are not thinking about our to-do list or what happened earlier or might come later, we simply wash the dishes, focused on the components of washing. We observe the transformation from a plate covered with food residue to one that is clean. We watch the process as our hands rinse, scrub, rinse, and dry a plate. While focused on the process, our minds are free of inner chatter.
Anything and everything we do can be an opportunity for building our peace power. We choose to be mindful while driving and immerse ourselves fully in the process; rather than doing this and that, we simply drive and focus totally on the activity. It’s a sensible safety practice too!
When conversing with another, we can look into that person’s eyes and listen deeply, fully aware of the person’s words and facial expressions. Rather than thinking about what we might wish to say, our focus is on listening. Our hearts will tell us what to say and when to say it.
Gardening is another activity in which we can practice being fully present. While watering, weeding, or planting we can speak to the plants of our admiration and love for them. When we begin to settle into awareness of the plants, soil, bugs, birds, etc., we “lose ourselves” and discover how peaceful we can be.
Our world offers countless distractions and an abundance of noise; it also offers infinite possibilities for choosing to be present, fully aware, and mindful of what is transpiring within and without.
Today we choose the peace of inner silence through being aware of our thoughts, words, and actions. When we are fully present, they all align and offer us the serenity we seek.
Reflections: It’s easiest for me to be aware when I’m in a natural setting such as a woods, beach, swamp, or prairie. There my focus is on the present moment, absorbing and observing all around me with joyous anticipation. The photo I selected to go with this post is a great example of why it’s easier for me to be fully present when in nature.
Ernie, our friend Judi, and I were paddling and floating downstream on Fisheating Creek when we came upon this breath-stopping sight! The colors, reflections, angles, the sheer majesty of the scene held me transfixed. No thought was possible other than to get a photo. Afterwards, I simply sat and stared totally present, immersed in awe.
As I reflected on the photo and the experience it calls to mind, I realized the power of being in Nature for me lies in my total joining with the environment. There is no separate tree, creek, bird or plant, there is simply connection. There are no boundaries, there is no separation. The peace I feel in natural settings is a direct result of experiencing oneness.
In such a setting it is easy for me to be aware, to be mindful and to be connected and peaceful with never a thought of a to-do-list. I am simply and fully present. Other times, it is not so easy for me to be fully present or aware and so I must choose to be mindful. I am grateful for the times I see myself “in my head” and choose to pull myself back to now with a few welcome, mindful breaths. The discomfort of these times of forgetting remind me how much I prefer peace and how simple it can be. All I need do is follow Ram Dass’s advice to, “Just be here now.”
Your turn to reflect – What does awareness/mindfulness look like in your life? When, where, and how are aware and fully present? How do you feel when you are fully present and aware?
Thank you for being a vital part of Peace on Earth by nurturing peace in your heart, in your life. The more that you embody peace, the more peace there is.
Your comments and suggestions are welcomed. (Click on the blue link below.)
“Don’t think about the past.
Just be here now”
- Ram Dass - Be Here Now
Photo taken by Donna Day
while awestruck at
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