An exquisite dynamism, vitality, receptivity, and responsiveness is fundamental to life and to us as life. While there are moments of grace that seem to usher us into greater awareness of this inherent aliveness, there are orientations and choices that we can make to support us in this recognition. To illustrate this, let me share a story…
Returning from my morning hike, I pass a small tent resting in my neighbor’s garden. Drawn by laughter and excited voices carried on the breeze, I walk over and call “Knock, knock.” A voice chimes back “Who’s there?” Peering in, I am met with the large smile of a little girl, her big, brown eyes wide with anticipation. Enveloped in a cozy blanket and surrounded by books, “her baby,” and a giraffe named “giraffe,” the little girl and her grandmother tell me that they are eagerly awaiting the rain.
As I sit here typing, I notice that the sweetness and spontaneity of this little gathering have infused me with a delicious sense of aliveness.
Aliveness is indeed contagious.
In this spirit of joyful contagion, please pause and try the following:
Find a comfortable position and close your eyes. Take three slow, deep breaths and remember a time when you felt profoundly alive, energized, invigorated, and engaged. Perhaps it was while you were in the natural world, in a moment of deep connection with a friend, or while engaged in a project close to your heart and soul. It may have been a moment of play or while taking a nourishing breath and recognizing that, even with the hardships and heartbreak of this world, there is something profoundly mysterious, meaningful, and beautiful about simply being alive.
As you sit here, remembering this time and place, reflect in as much detail as you can:
- Where are you?
- What is around you?
- Are you alone or with others?
- What was available to you at that time that ordinarily may feel as if it is not available?
- Allow the aliveness invoked by this memory to infuse your being. Notice any sensations, images, or feelings that may be present.
Over the course of the coming week, allow time for curiosity, connection and playfulness. Seek out that which is life renewing and affirming and notice how this impacts you.
Please share your experiences with this practice in the reflection area below.