Time to Remember…

Not to Forget

The Peninsula Woman

Jan – Feb 2007


And forget not
that the earth delights
to feel your bare feet
and the winds
long to play with
your hair
~Kahil Gibran

The end of the year and the beginning of the New Year are held in high regard in this country.  Why is that?  The New Year is symbolically a time where we stand (if you will) between two different worlds of time, the Past and the Future.  This year we will look back into 2006 and all of the things we have accomplished (or not accomplished) and look forward to 2007 with new ideas about what should be done, what needs to be done, and what we hope will happen.  The New Year is a power-point in our consciousness.  All of our hopes and dreams are revisited and it is hard not to get entranced by this phenomena.  But what is truly important?

What can we also embrace during this transitional time?

Outside the window in my office there is a beautiful tree that has dropped about 90 percent of its leaves.  As the wind gently blows I can see a few more leaves let go and fall softly to the ground.  I can’t help but see this as a metaphor for the New Year.  The above poem by Gibran is a reminder to me that beyond all of my personal and professional goals I also need to be reminded how the experiencing of nature is one of the most profound gifts we receive while we are here on this beautiful planet.  In the past few days it has been getting increasingly cold outside. I have been putting the heat on everyday to maintain the warmth my body needs. When I was younger I used to think that talking about the weather was such an incredibly lame thing to do.  Now as I get older I am understanding more clearly why we try to connect with each other through the weather.  In essence we are trying to remember to connect with nature.  This single inquiry about weather is an action to remember nature.  Whether we are conscious of it or not, nature is always inviting us to revel in its beauty and splendor.

I live in Southern California, so even though it is sunny outside I must remember it is winter.  The weather is reminding me that nature is always important. Our sensual experiences and relationship to nature dictate so much of the primary experiences we will have in our lives.  Yesterday, for example, my piano teacher who is from Michigan was having a difficult time with her first Christmas here in California. She said to me,  “I am having a hard time adjusting to the fact that there isn’t any snow.  Did you know you can smell when it is going to snow?”  Well, being a Native Californian I had no idea what she was talking about, really!  But, my first thought was how profound our sensual experiences are. My piano teacher was reflecting on the loss of a sensual experience that she connected with the joy of the Holidays.  There was simply – no snow!!

So regardless of what else you do this year I hope you will remember to look up to the sky in the winter as the stars twinkle and sparkle and remember how vast the possibilities of awarenessthere really are.  I also hope you will remember to feel the grass between your toes on a hot summer day and remind yourself of how important the dirt is, and how it continues to provide for you on a daily basis.  Also, feel the breeze and know how important the air is in keeping things circulating so you will not get stagnant. Remember your need to grow!  Lastly, drink in a cool fresh glass of water and remind yourself that without this simple substance provided daily it would be difficult to function.  

Simplicity has a way of communicating value but we must stop in order to experience it. As you look forward to 2007 there are many goals, hopes and dreams I am sure are important to you.  My hope is you will remember to not forget the simple gifts. And when someone wants to talk with you about the weather, offer your insights and reconnect with nature.

The ordinary arts we practice every day at home
are of more importance to the soul
than their simplicity might suggest.

~Thomas More