What's Healing Me Right Now
What is Healing Me Right Now
I was reflecting this morning on the many things that have brought me deep healing over the past couple of months. Some of these things seem so acutely obvious, yet they are simple things most of us neglect to do on a regular basis. Why is that? I think because there is such a focus in our culture on doing vs. being. I’m learning to reverse this trend. I’m paying more attention.
The Sun: I have basked in the warmth of the sunlight by the pool every morning for the past few weeks. My energy levels have increased and my skin looks golden, healthy. There are days when I go to the pool, and I’m the only one there. It has been arranged as my sanctuary where healing waters refresh me as the gentle breeze wisps by in the sacred solitude. Other days there are plenty of children laughing and splashing away, and I’m told, “these are your teachers today.”
Nature: I have been spending quite a bit of time just watching the trees in the small forest behind my house. The other day I was thinking about the abundant nature of trees, their leaves and the model it sets for the entire universe. I was in awe of the forces greater than myself working to sustain life. Most of us believe the illusion that we’re in control of our lives. At the most fundamental level though, we are sustained by food, water and air that come from governing sources which have nothing to do with our limited human power. If they ceased to exist, so would we, and oddly I find that comforting.
Poetry: My favorite poet right now is Mary Oliver. I love how she connects to nature and forces us to pay attention. One of my favorite poems If I Were from her book A Thousand Mornings has a line that says, “If I were a Sufi for sure I would be one of the spinning kind.” I love that line. I love the poetry of the Sufi mystics. And I love watching Sufi whirling dervishes. Sometimes I’ve pretended to be one…Mary gets it.
I watched a documentary last year about a woman who was severely injured in a car crash and was told she would probably never be able to walk again. She started imagining spinning with the divine and eventually became well enough to travel to Turkey to become a certified whirling dervish. Watching her spin was a beautiful thing to behold. Thank you, Mary, for reminding us.
Music: It has always been the second language I speak. There have been times when emotions are so strong that words cannot convey what I feel. Those are the times when I sit down at the piano with no reservations and let my fingers do the talking. It’s hard to explain the cathartic release this provides, but I’m sure others who play an instrument can relate.
I recently saw the musical documentary The Music of Strangers by legendary cellist, Yo-Yo Ma. The movie beautifully depicts how music influences culture and helps provide meaning in our lives during tragic times. My favorite part of the movie depicted two men, one an Armenian Christian and the other a Syrian Muslim, traveling to the refugee camps to provide supplies and teach the children about music. It was heartbreaking to see the destruction of the conflict in the Middle East. However, the partnership these two friends displayed in solidarity with those suffering was immensely moving. What a powerful subversive statement of peacemaking.
Also, do yourself a favor and watch the movie, Sing Street, which just released for purchase this week. It’s a coming of age story written and directed by John Carney (remember Once?). The story is delightfully sweet and the characters equally endearing. I promise you will leave that movie experience feeling more joyful than you have in a while. Also, If you buy the soundtrack, you will probably sing and dance around like a crazy fool. You’ve been warned.