Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Can you see the wind?

Billowing clouds, Waikiki, Honolulu, HI, February 2005, Pentax Optio 555, Exposure 1/400 sec @ f5.6, ISO 64, no flash © Steven Crisp

You see the wind every day, right? So you know exactly what it is, when it is present, which way it is blowing, and generally with how much force, right?

Actually, no. You cannot see the wind. Just like you cannot see the air you breathe, and a fish cannot see the water in which it swims. What you see are the effects of the wind.

You see unmown fields dancing gently with the breeze, undulating, in a rhythmic samba to some unheard melody. You see towering pines with their bows heaving, breathing each breath as it comes and goes, in and out, without conscious participation, just a part of the breath of life, literally, transforming carbon-dioxide into oxygen for you to breathe as the wind brings in the storm. And you’ve seen that storm, dark clouds billowing ever so slowly, like the overburdened locomotive gaining steam as it lumbers across the plains. Do not get in its way, for there is so much energy that is manifest there.

So what is my point? Only this: you cannot see the wind, but you can see its affect. This also is true of your thoughts. You cannot see them, but surely you can see that they too leave a signature for others to see. Sometimes gentle and caring, sometimes stormy and violent. These thoughts are real, and so are their affects. Gain control of your thoughts and you can dramatically affect both the world around you, and perhaps most importantly, your reaction to the world as it is.

This is the manner in which you affect the world — not by trying to “fix it”, make it “better”, more “fair”, more “just”; no, by careful attention, full awareness, and with a grounded wisdom that helps you understand and appreciate all that life is, and in which we are an integral part.

If there is something you don’t like about the world, change yourself, for you are as much a part of life as the distant stars and the mountain streams. Blooming gardens affect you, and you affect them through daily watering. As so many sages have noted over the years, you have all of the power the universe can offer to create, right now, in this instant, a world of beauty and peace and harmony. The power is in you. To interpret that which life offers to you, and to offer to life that which you wish to see.

So remember the power of the unseen wind, and realize your thoughts hold greater power by far.


Anonymous said...

The Wind is like air, only pushier.

Steven Crisp said...

I like it. And the water is like rain, only wetter. And the hurricane is like wind, with more testosterone.

Anonymous said...

These thoughts about the wind made me think about interpersonal relationships. The various ways we relate to others are full of unseen forces - Winds! If we look closer we are surprised by the complexity and the numbers of forces at play...but who bothers? Most of us get involved in very routine ways of relating, so it takes a little effort to get out of those habits that keep us from seeing, from being aware. One of the mysteries about the various ways that we relate to friends, lovers, family, acquaintences, and even to strangers met casually, is the strength and power of the unseen forces involved; forces that buffet us and our emotions around like dry leaves, and sometimes change the direction of our lives. How do we get out of the routine ways of seeing ourselves and others? Meeting a special awakened spirit helps, sometimes, but we need to make our own efforts. Effort to do what exactly? How do we make the effort to keep our eyes open and stay aware as we interact with other beings, so that we might catch a glimpse of the winds? By opening ourselves, showing ourselves sincerely to others, not being afraid to live outside the protective cocoon. (Yes, I know, some have lived in that cocoon so long they have no idea what it means to be outside of it). It is hard to describe, and maybe how to do this needs to be found by each person individually. Once after meeting someone, getting to know her, letting her know me, I thought we were deeply involved, but she shocked me by saying one day, "Naked bodies is easy, naked souls is hard." She was right, our relationship was superficial, it had not progressed, and there were many unspoken things, things we could not address. So, we can often think we are open, but not really be. Naked self is hard with others, and it's hard to be naked (honest) when alone with ourselves. Gotta make the effort though - and I sense that the reward is worth the effort. Anyway, what else it there to do? Good luck in watching for the wind everywhere, every day, every moment.

Steven Crisp said...

Thanks much for this thoughtful post. I like the connection to our interpersonal relationships -- there are so many layers of interaction, as you say, there is much unseen to affect our dance.

"Naked bodies is easy, naked souls is hard."

A very keen insight. Naked souls are those not dressed by the mind's finery. Strip away the mind, and you undress the soul. How to expose? Meet her in the Present moment. Leave your future expectations and past histories on the rocky shore of everyday, and skinny dip in the warm, still waters of Now. I think it is possible, don't you? It is a very different place than where others will meet, but that just means you have that much more solitude. Enjoy the swim, and thanks for the visit.