Designing our Spiritual Futures

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The house is still asleep as I slip out of bed to go upstairs and begin my day with meditation. Bindi, the younger puppy, stirs as I walk by, gives me a glance and goes back to sleep. She knows that I will be back in an hour so, and playtime will then begin.

The rain has been falling hard all night, but I want to hear more of it, so I half-open the windows in the living room on my return downstairs. Ah. The soothing sounds of birds intermingled with the rain filtering through the leaves on the trees. The sight of raindrops holding on to the edges of the shrubs with skinny, pine-needle like leaves, that grow taller by the summer outside the living room windows.

I sip on my cup of tea and wonder. How far have we come? How much further do we have to go? Are we still making a difference? Should we continue on the path or take a diversion? How engaged are we in designing our own spiritual futures?

In the context of the age of the universe, ten years is a minuscule amount of time. In the context of a human lifetime, ten years can be a significant number. To put it in context, pause and consider. What are some significant (spiritual) events in your life over the past ten years? The answer to this question can reveal much about why we are on our spiritual path, our companions, and the quality of our journey.

If we sit deeply with the question from a spiritual perspective, the answer can reveal some truths too. The purpose of our inquiry isn’t necessarily to create a ‘progress report’. It is more like we are visiting with ourselves in loving kindness, observing our inner state, and being grateful for our present gifts. It is acknowledging that no amount of effort, however small, in the journey towards divine connection is ever wasted. Every action counts and everything is counted.

Our individual progress may seem slow and yet, when many slow moving waves merge together in harmony and resonance, they can move entire masses of land over time. What can we learn from nature and her design prowess?

We can design our own spiritual future if we are willing to acquire the tools we need, harmonize with like-hearted companions, and do the daily work that connects our consciousness to the joy, truth and awareness of our own manifest destiny.

As the rain starts to taper off and the heat begins to rise again, I realize that I need to refill my cup and grab another cookie. It is time to look forward to the weekly gathering of travelers, celebrate the present, and look forward to growing into a brighter future.

Kumud

Join the #SpiritChat community for our weekly virtual gathering on Twitter, Sunday July 25 at 9am ET / 630pm India. We will celebrate ten years of traveling with tea, cookies, and maybe more… Namaste ~ @AjmaniK

Nature designs beautiful presents in togetherness. We can learn from her…

An Attitude of Friendliness

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Some would have been first seeded forty years ago next July. Others would have been planted thirty five years ago this fall. They have become strong, healthy, long-term trees that have endured the winds of time and stood the droughts of distance across continents. And then, there was the ‘online world’ of twitter, where a totally different garden of friendships was seeded over the past ten years.

Some years, it seemed like I would talk with my twitter friends much more regularly – at least weekly during our hourly Sunday morning chats – than I would with my ‘real-life’ friends. Somewhere along the way, I dropped the distinction between ‘online’ and ‘real-life’, because all the friendships had a human quality about them. If the heart is engaged, then the medium is simply a conduit. If there is no heart-engagement, then no medium is going to help develop a friendship, is it?

So, where does it all begin?

It is when we exclaim ‘you too!’ that the friendship seed can find common ground. You lived in that part of Delhi? You’ve been to Kashmir too? You are also a middle child? You had a tough time with thermodynamics in engineering school too? Oh, you’re looking for a roommate too in this small college town, seven thousand miles away from home?

That’s the ‘birds of a feather’ metaphor of the beginnings of friendships.

There is also the ‘opposites attract’ metaphor.

This happens when two people are brought together in time and space, and they are so totally different that their natural curiosity leads them to take baby steps towards each other. A half-dozen or so American friendships in graduate school began this way for me. They taught me about baseball, white-water rafting, late-night pizza, football, thanksgiving, living and thriving in small-town America.

More importantly, the gentle inquiries of my American friends about Indian society, religion and customs also encouraged me to delve deeper into my own culture. In trying to answer their questions, I begin to realize how little I knew about my own country and myself. Their questions got me started on the path to asking questions – my journey into inquiry was prompted by them. 

What makes for a life-impacting friendship? Does the impact depend on the stage in our life that the friendship begins? Is it the ‘birds of a feather’ or the ‘opposites attract’ type that is more impactful?  How many friendships can we meaningfully sustain? What makes a friendship sustainable in the long run? Let me try and answer that last question on sustainability. 

Some shared experiences, some commonality of life experience, some diversity of cultural background, some openness of heart  towards forgiveness. These are some basic ingredients for sustaining healthy, long-term friendships. Is there an indispensable  ingredient for sustainability? To quote the Yoga sage Patanjali, an attitude of friendliness towards those who are friendly towards us, also called maitri, is vital. In other words, our attitude of Maitri is the essential sun, the seed, the soil, the wind and the water of all friendship.

As we grow our attitude of friendliness, we grow our heart through joyous experiences of deep friendships. Eventually, we see no stranger because we become aware of our sustainable friendship with the One who is the friend to all. 

Kumud

P.S. Join us in our weekly conversation with the #SpiritChat community this Sunday, July 18 at 9amET / 630pm India on twitter. We will kickoff an informal “Friendship week” and invite you to (re)connect with a friend or few, either online or offline, or within. Help us spread the attitude of friendliness. In maitri, Namaste – @AjmaniK

An attitude of friendliness makes space in the heart for the friendly…

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On Spiritual Enrichment

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It felt like an early autumn morning as I walked out on to the deck after a night of storms. The remnants of the coastal storm had brought some welcome relief from the heat along with overcast skies. However, one glance at the thicket of trees filled with green leaves was enough to bring me back to summer.  It was going to be a great outside day. Perhaps I would work in the garden and  pull weeds in the flower beds, I mused. 

My musing turned to three hours of first removing the overgrown grasses on both sides of the fence, and then working around the rose bushes on the weeds. Why do these weeds keep showing up, particularly in a six-foot portion of the flower beds? I know that I have put down landscaping fabric (weed barrier) and covered it with layers of river rock over the years. What’s missing?

As I dug into the six-foot portion with my special tool that helps me extract the weeds from the roots, I noticed that I wasn’t hitting any fabric beneath the rocks. Aha. Mystery solved, or so I thought. I now remembered that I had run out of landscape fabric when in that six-foot portion when I did the flower bed project a few years ago. No wonder the two rose bushes in that portion would always be out-shone by the ones that bloomed in the adjacent twelve-foot portion that does have the weed barrier, and a lot less weeds. 

A single shortcut taken by me three years ago, and I have spent an inordinate number of hours paying for it in maintenance and  lack of enrichment in that part of the garden. I essentially left the door open for the weeds to create ‘poverty’, right next door to the ‘wealthiest’ part of the flower bed. I felt like the farmer who keeps watering his fields while the back-stops on his sluice gates are left open. Do you ever feel that way in life, in your spiritual practice?

I felt like that for years. My progress, my heart’s growth would happen in fits and starts. I did a lot of reading, which I still do, because I love to read.  I spent a lot of time and learnt a lot in years of my visits to the local temple. I still do. I rarely missed an opportunity to attend day(s)-long retreats with spiritual Gurus visiting town. That didn’t happen over the past year, but I look forward to them again. And yet, something was missing. The aspect of long-term enrichment of the heart and soul remained elusive. I didn’t feel like I could call-up deep inner peace, silence, stillness, and such, at a moment’s notice. And then something changed.

I decided to try a new meditation practice. My ‘trainer’ asked me for a favor. “Make a commitment to practice for ninety days.” Ninety days? I had been practicing on and off by myself for years. Ninety days was going to be a walk in the garden, weeds and all! And so it began. Morning practice. Evening cleaning (weeding!). Night-time remembrance. Repeat next day. Weekly ‘deep cleaning’ (weeding!). Slowly, days turned to weeks, which turned to months. It has been over four years. Why am I still practicing?

My practice makes me feel enriched. Every morning – okay, more mornings than not – I feel like a kid in a candy store as I sit for the morning meditation. What new treasures am I going to discover today? In the evening, as I do the inner weeding, I prepare for the dreamless sleep that is going to come after bedtime remembrance. More enrichment follows. Some days I feel like I am immersed in all this wealth at random moments during the day. I can carry my peace with me because I feel like I have access to a secret treasury. 

Except that it wasn’t a secret. All it took was wondering, asking the right questions, waiting for the answers, and when offered the help of a new practice, accepting the invitation to make a small commitment. It was like deciding to fix that six-foot piece of missing fabric, and see if the weeds would stop taking the roses’ bloom away next season. It was learning that enrichment isn’t about accumulating a wealth of practices, but more about doing that One practice which consistently gives us great joy, peace, harmony and whatever makes our hearts glow with purpose. 

What is that enrichment practice going to be for you? If you are already practicing, you are already on the path to enrichment unlimited. If you aren’t, then pause and consider. Ask some questions. Be open to the answers. And keep sight of the knowing that you, just like anyone else, deserve to be enriched beyond your wildest dreams.

This is your time. Don’t shy away. Be still. Listen. 

Kumud

P.S. Join us for our weekly conversation with the #SpiritChat community on twitter, Sunday July 11 at 9am ET / 2pm UTC / 630pm India. I know that you have the ability to enrich someone with your experience and insights. Come share with us. Namaste – @AjmaniK

 

Let’s make no mistake – weeds and thorns contribute to enrichment too!

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The Heart of Freedom

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I’m feeling a little bit disappointed that I didn’t get to the umbrella on the deck in time during the last storm. As I try to open it, I notice that the middle of the three tiers won’t fully open because one one of the supporting tines has broken in half and gone missing. The puppy is standing beside me, looking at me like I’ve lost my mind as I raise and lower the cranking mechanism in vain, hoping that it will somehow fix itself.

No such luck. As I am about to give up, I look down onto the garden, and there, sticking out of the red flowering bush, is the other half of the broken support. Hope. I retrieve it and jerry-rig the two pieces together, and walla, I have a semi-functional shade from the sun. It’s imperfectly perfect in its deformity, in that the tension has gone missing from the fabric that the broken tine now supports.

In retrospect, the storm has given me what I had wished the umbrella always had — a bit of flexibility in its undue tautness, so that it can better weather a bit more of the frequent wind gusts that tend to come off of the water. It looks a bit bent and articulated, and not so pretty any more, but it is actually more relaxed and functional and free-floating in its existence.

I go back to reading my book on Tao with the essay about being “easy and relaxed”. It speaks about harmony with the universe, about transcending both “being” and “doing’” and effortlessly switching from one to the other when necessary. It seems to bring home the message of choice, without which, it is hard to imagine any sense of true freedom.

Some will not rest until they have achieved or restored perfection, while others are at peace with their ‘brokenness’ and their imperfections. Some use their freedom to choose to walk the hard, challenging, twisted paths of life, while others are content in choosing the ‘easy’ roads. We are often judged, even defined by the world by the choices we make, and yet that is all moot, for only our heart knows the inner peace that comes from choosing what is in alignment with the call of our soul.

The willingness to choose our own path, the courage to be answerable to the heart, the ability to keep growing in connection to the divine, the rising up to be in service to others, the releasing of our inner fragrance of love — and to do all of these in a relaxed harmony with the universe — are perhaps our true freedoms. And for us to practice them, our hearts’ freedoms need not be perfect, do they?

As I finish writing this, the creaking of the sunbrella tells me that the wind is picking up and another summer evening thunderstorm approaches. This time, I am ready and present to act before I lose any more tines. I hope to have shade for a few more weeks, for summer has just begun!

Kumud

P.S. What are your thoughts on the heart of freedom? Are we really as free as we think we are? What is it that binds us, often without our awareness? I invite you to share in our weekly chat with the #SpiritChat community on Sunday July 4 (Independence Day in The USA) at 9am ET / 630pm India. Namaste – @AjmaniK

Summer flowers bloom, revealing hearts of Freedom

On Belonging and Detachment

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In conversations about spirituality, the ideas of attachment and detachment come up regularly. The motivation for practicing ‘letting go’ is that it can potentially help us with our progress on the spiritual path. The question is: how does  detachment really help us grow spiritually?

According to the Indian sage Adi Sankaracharya, doing our work with an attitude of detachment to the rewards helps us purify our inner being or heart. It is when we purify our heart that we develop the burning desire to know the truth. It is when we want to know the truth that we develop the desire to work towards liberation. If we string together the pearls of purity, truth and an inner attitude of detachment, we can travel the path to liberation. 

The path sounds so simple, doesn’t it? And yet, it is often so difficult to walk in daily life. We are constantly getting more and more entangled in the web of attachment woven by our actions. We share something on social media or write a blog post, and we immediately await the ‘reward’ of likes, shares, reactions and comments from others. We are incessantly subjected to a stream of advertising, marketing, and messaging that tries to deepen our fear of missing out on the latest activity or product that will make our life ‘better’.

We want to embrace simplicity and minimalism by reducing our impact on the environment, and yet our desires and possessions seem to keep on increasing. So, what can we do to reclaim our attitude of detachment in our daily living and actions? The Yoga practice of aparigraha – not grasping in any way – can help us reverse course. Aparigraha is a simple, two part practice. The first part is to work towards identifying and then freeing ourselves of our existing attachments. The second part is to turn our focus towards our internal world, which will automatically reduce our focus and attraction to the ‘shiny objects’ of the external world.

Our two-part Yoga practice of Aparigraha or developing detachment can be viewed as an invitation to live our lives in a non-clinging, non-acquisitive, non-transactional and non-possessive manner. When we reduce the transactional nature of our actions, we begin to notice more lightness, purity, and caring emerge in our heart. If and when we truly care about our fellow beings, then giving and sharing can follow. Sharing can create space for us to belong to each other and replace the desire to constantly transact with one another. 

The sense of belonging can create a beautiful heart space. Loving detachment can bring us closer to that space. Working together, belonging and detachment can bring us closer to our divine potential. Let’s work towards that, shall we? 

Kumud

P.S. Join us for our weekly chat, Sunday June 27 at 9amET / 630pm India on twitter. We will talk about detachment and its practice. We hope that you can join us for our #SpiritChat gathering, and grow our circle of belonging. Namaste – @AjmaniK

 

Detached from each other, they bloom best in a shared sense of belonging – hydrangeas

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On the Raising of Fathers

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Let’s get this out of the way at the very beginning. There are no perfect fathers, just like there are no perfect children. That could be the end of the blog post right here. In fact for some of you, “father’s day” doesn’t exactly fill your heart with warmth. It may even bring back pain, anger, grief and hurtful memories. And yet, allow me share a bit of my personal story with you.

I was fortunate to be raised, and influenced, by three wonderful men who played tremendous father figures in my life. My birth Dad, my Uncle whose family I spent fourteen wonderful years from third grade on, and my Uncle’s brother in the USA whose family pretty much adopted me from the moment I landed in the USA for graduate studies. All three of these men played roles in my life, most of which I did not understand until I became a Dad myself. 

All my Dads taught me more about sacrifice and grace in motion, than I could possibly hope to learn by myself. And this was all before I had ever read a single word of my ’spiritual guides’ like Vivekananda, Sri Aurobindo, Yogananda, Ramakrishna, and more. Perhaps I was too busy taking notes in my heart about what my ‘real Dads’ were trying to teach me with their lives. Over the years, one by one, they all went to the eternal flame, as all mortals do. In their passage, they each left me with a hidden challenge —  to keep their flame in motion in the world around me. 

I became aware of the challenge when I was presented with the gift to raise my own. In the process, In raising her, I gained greater understanding that I was really raising myself in small ways every day. Could my daughter be raising me through direct experience of empathy, kindness and listening? Could it also be that the tough challenge of raising me had helped raised my Dads in some way? 

Psychologists stress upon the critical role of ‘fathers’ in their children’s lives, but what if the ‘fathers’ are resentful or afraid of the role presented to them? It is hard enough for willing and dedicated Dads to ‘do raising right’, so one can imagine the challenges of those who feel unprepared or unwilling.  In such cases, could the role of ‘raising’ be done more effectively by teachers, mentors, willing relatives, spiritual guides and more? 

There are no easy answers, because no matter how much we talk about ‘simplicity’, life is messy and complicated. The best advice that I got from my Dads was that they gave very little advice, if any at all. They left the door open for me to figure it out on my own  because they had no way of forecasting what I would be facing when doing my own ‘raising’. If anything, my Dads’ best ‘advice’ was in the kindness with which they all treated their family, friends, guests, and those who asked them for help.

The older I get, the wiser my Dads’ life lessons seem to get. I have a ways to go on my journey, and yet I know that they, and my guides, are raising me up every time I stumble and fall. I also know that there is a loving energy in the universe that raises you too. I hope you believe the same. 

Namaste,

Kumud

P.S. Join our #SpiritChat community in our weekly twitter chat, Sunday June 20 at 9amET / 630pm India. We will talk about Fathers, imperfections, and raising each other on our path. I will bring the usual goodies and questions. I hope you join us – @AjmaniK

 

The three who raised me… they show up often in nature…

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A Spiritual Return to Work

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It had been almost a year since I had the opportunity to walk some of my favorite nature trails close to my workplace. The work-from-home life-change had disrupted my almost daily visits to the rivers, bridges and forest spaces of renewal.

All of that changed in an instant this past week, as I took some time off to ‘return to work.’ The work of visiting with some of my ‘best friends’ and checking on their health. It was a wonderful return, a visit that reminded me of how much I had missed this essential part of my spiritual practice.

The trails are the type of friends who never ask you how long you’ve been gone – they just welcome you back with open arms. This felt true about the section of the river that was in spate after the recent rains, as also the section where a mother and her toddler were soaking their toes in its quiet flow under a bridge.

The welcome felt true about the narrow fisherman’s trail where the dense over-growth grabbed your ankles as you walked by, and the tall oaks invited you to hug them in the wide clearings. An hour and a half later, playing and visiting with the damp earth, waters and river beds, clouds in the sky, sunlight among trees, and the ‘ether’ that flows warmth from nature’s heart to mine, I felt while again.

I realized that this is the part of ‘coming to work’ that I had truly missed over the past year. I realized that the daily connection to nature plants seeds of contentment, which grow into branches of calmness and the leaves compassion. Courage and clarity are the flowers and fruits become the tree of spiritual work.

Our real work is perhaps to remember our nature. Connection with nature can remind us that we have the potential to be living, breathing, loving, ever-welcoming, radiant hearts full of joy, awareness and contentment. May we all include That connection in our ‘return to work’ plans.

Namaste,

Kumud

P.S. Join us for our weekly Twitter chat, Sunday June 13 at 9amET / 630om India in #SpiritChat. I look forward to connecting with all of you. – @AjmaniK

The ‘bike path’ through the forest…

The Art of Doing Nothing

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One annual rite of passage at the start of summer is the making of the ‘reading list’. At my daughter’s school, the ‘requirement’ is to read a few thousand words worth of books from a list of their own making. As her first week out of school came to a close on Friday, she decided that we ought to give the library a visit so that she could get started.

The library, after over a year or so? Well, yes! Paper books. Yay! And I would have plenty of time to browse the “New Books” section because her list was a dozen and a half books long. Maybe I would find a new title on poetry or spirituality. We would see…

Thirty minutes of browsing, pulling and putting books back, and nothing was ‘speaking’ to me. And then, a small hardcover in white that said, “NIKSEN – Embracing the Dutch Art of Doing Nothing”. This was it. How did the library know that I had been exploring the Zen practice of “Wu Wei” or “purposelessness” over the past week or so?!

Needless to say, “Niksen” came home with me and I have been enjoying it. At first glance, the phrase “doing nothing” seems like an oxymoron because it combines ‘doing’ with ‘nothing’. If we are ‘doing’, then it cannot be ‘nothing’, right? The paradox can be resolved by adding ‘without premeditation or defined purpose’ to the ‘doing’. Think of an unplanned, spontaneous detour on a road trip. Or a trip into la-la land as you pause your brisk morning walk to look at the geese and new goslings cross the street. Or…

In moments where we suspend the churn of mental, emotional and even spiritual activity, we can find ourselves in a state of ‘doing nothing’. It is a state of just being. Some would equate ‘doing nothing’ to ‘being useless’. Even if that were true, the Tao philosophy posits that it is the balance between the ‘useless’ and the ‘useful’ that gives meaning to life. The pursuit of ‘being useful’ accumulates stress and tension in our lives. Embracing the useless by doing nothing, even for a few moments, can release stress and renew us.

We have all experienced those moments where we ‘lost ourselves’ to the world as we immersed into nothingness. Gazing at a butterfly landing on the azaleas, watching the kids rolling down the hill at the playground, listening to a favorite piece of music or dozing off in a lounge chair during a beach trip. You get the idea. Doing nothing can be so much fun because it feels like play! So, why don’t we do more of Niksen or Wu-wei?

We have our reasons, real and imagined. We have responsibilities, deadlines, project reports, home-stuff, school-stuff, work-stuff, the stuff of life and death. How are we supposed to find time for conscious nothingness in our busy lives? Maybe we can ask a different question. Where are we headed if we don’t make time to ‘do nothing’ and give the ‘useful’ moments of our life a chance to rest?

Let’s make time. If necessary, schedule time to do nothing. It’s going to be uncomfortable for some of us ‘go getters’. If it helps, let’s consider your ‘doing nothing’ time as a new growth opportunity. Who knows? We may find ourselves niksening in the “what’s new” section of our local library and even discover some new (inner) treasures.

Kumud

P.S. I invite you to join our weekly Twitter chat on Sunday June 6 at 9amET / 630pm India. We will play with the idea of doing nothing in #Spiritchat! Namaste – @AjmaniK

Sunrise happens while we do nothing…

In Loving Remembrance

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The act of remembrance is a multifaceted thing. Some practice it in deep silence while others may engage it with sound and fury of music and focalization. Some may pick up a brush, dip it in colors and paint their memories into masterpieces, while others may dance their way across wooden floors in the company of new friends.

Regardless of personal preference, the practice is important because it reminds us of the frailty and fragility of our own life. Remembrance and memorialization have been with us as integral parts of our lives for as long as human memory exists. Thousands of years ago, the Egyptians built great pyramids. Why? So that they could be remembered, not forgotten.

This fear that we shall somehow be forgotten in death is perhaps what drives us to seek a purpose-filled life, a life where we ‘make a difference in the world’ and even ‘leave it a better place’. What could we perhaps do in this life that would make us immemorial? We could begin by remembering why we’re here in the first place.

One simple explanation of this ‘why’ is that we are here to remember love. Not just ordinary, human love, but to partake in the experience of divine love. In the Yoga tradition, this experience can be felt through Bhakti – a deep, constant, immersive remembrance of the beloved in the divine. And yet, this is only one way to love.

The Yoga of action, or Karma Yoga, also leads us to divine love. We simply have to remember to dedicate all our actions to the real doer, the divine. The Yogas of knowledge (Gyana) and meditation (Raja), both have pathways to lead us to the remembrance of the presence of divine love in our lives.

Our greatest spiritual challenge is that of forgetfulness. We forget that the opportunity to experience divine love is available to us in every given moment. Yes, love requires labor. But what if we were to remember to integrate deep immersion, inspired action, experiential knowledge and in-the-moment meditation into our labor of loving?

With loving remembrance, we can develop awareness of oneness, and our lives can become living memorials of truth and joy to all those whose silent sacrifices of life-force have fired our hearts with higher purpose. Let our gratitude flow towards them today.

Namaste,

Kumud

Join us for our weekly Twitter chat, Memorial Sunday (in the USA), May 30 at 9amET / 630pm India in #SpiritChat, as we discuss remembrance and love. Namaste ~ @AjmaniK

On Bridges and Spirituality

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I decided that I was going to walk farther than ever before along my recently discovered walking trails around the lake. I figured that I would go as far around the circle that I was allowed, and then have to double-back on my path. It would be a good opportunity to view the morning interplay of light, water, sky, birds and trees from both directions — going clockwise and counter-clockwise.

What I hadn’t accounted for was that I would be presented with an invitation at the three-quarter mark around the circle. It was lying hidden among the tall grasses, in a shallow formed by the meeting of two down-slopes on either side of a moist stream bed. Perhaps the smallest of bridges I have ever encountered — one that a tall person like me would even leap over.

The invitation of the bridge created a decision point, an opportunity. Do I abandon my original plan to double-back and experience the trail from both directions, or do I accept, cross over, complete the circle and engage a different experience in that space and time?

We often encounter such ‘bridge experiences’ in our lives. Bridges tend to hold a fascination for most humans engaged in exploration and discovery, because they represent new possibilities. A bridge need not necessarily be a physical entity – far from it. People and practices, and their ability to facilitate new connections can serve as bridges too.

In many ways, music, art, dance, painting, sewing, hiking, reading, meditating, day-dreaming, sky-watching, cloud-spotting, gardening — name your favorite — can become a bridges. When we accept the invitation of any experience that transports us into a realm that creates sustainable silence, stillness, peace, we become a ‘bridge person’, don’t we?

And yet, we often refuse the invitation of bridges. Fear and uncertainty make us reluctant to build them, to cross over them, or invite others to cross with us. We often choose to double-back and keep reworking our well-trodden paths, rather than engage the ‘new bridge’ experiences, no matter how small the leap or crossing may be. What can help us accept the invitation?

Remembrance that faith, courage and grace are our friends can help us be bridges for others. When we experience our ability to help people in small ways, we gain spiritual strength. When we accept the help of those who have crossed before us, we open our heart to the light. In making small bridge choices, we plant the seeds of bigger crossings.

We are almost home. It’s time to take the leap, to cross over. Are you ready? Let’s walk.

The smallest of bridges, can set us free…