Touch the Earth, Reach for the Sky
On my ranch in Boulder we have dozens of grass-fed rabbits that are raised for meat and spend most of their life outside. A few weeks ago I sat beside them in the darkness and watched them eat. And as I was watching them, I suddenly started crying, struck so profoundly by the simplicity of their lives. They are from the earth, belong to the earth, and are nourished by the earth. And they live under the ever-changing sky, under the elements, under the sun, moon and stars. This is all they know.
I asked myself, how often do I physically touch the earth?
Weeks could go by and I might never touch Her. And how much time do I spend under the sky? Indigenous peoples around the world would spend much of their lives studying the sky’s patterns – it was an extension of their being. I rely on the weather forecast app on my phone to predict the weather. The sad fact is that I spend more time looking at my phone than at the sky.
Watching the rabbits that night was so joyful and yet so painful. They seemed so alive and aligned with their true nature, which served as a painful reminder that I am not. If I don’t feel the cold, don’t feel the rain on my skin, don’t stop to look at the stars, don’t press my body to the earth, how do I know that I am alive?
Since that night, I have made it a point to touch the earth each and every day. I try my best to spend time looking at the sky every morning and night. I’ve become more mindful when walking through the rain, noticing my resistance and making peace with it, surrendering to the moment and allowing myself to simply feel. These have all become apart of my mindfulness practice. And what I’ve noticed is that the more I feel, the more I am grateful to be alive; the more I become conscious of my reactive mind, the more I wake up from my autopilot; the more I pay attention to nature, the more joy I discover in each moment.
Everything breathes, everything is alive. When I touch the earth, I feel the Great Mother beating, my heart next to hers. And when I look at the sky, I reach up to it and remember that I am not just a spectator of my life but one with the Creator. I am so humbled and yet feel so powerful.
How often do you feel the earth or look at the sky?
Image Credit: Jessica Polar