To see or not to see...
Today's class theme was based on the poem "The Pinewoods" by Mary Oliver...
down the hill
as if the
moment were nothing different
lightly as that
sucking the loose silver,
their heavy eyes
I did not really see them.
I came later, and saw their tracks
I don’t believe
only to the edge
of what my eyes actually see
kindness of the morning,
which is my body surely,
is also something more–
suppose the deer waited
to see the sun lift itself up,
filling the hills
with light and shadows–
then they went leaping
back into the rough,
where I have lived so much of my life.
everything is so quick and uncertain,
so glancing, so improbable, so
Mary Oliver is asking you if you believe in what you cannot see?
This past week I've started sharing my food with a new friend. He lives outside under my front walk and, very cleverly, has a front door, a side door and a back door. I very creatively(!)
have named him Chippy since he's a chipmunk. We met on my journey back one day from
my mailbox. We both stood still and I am sure time did as well. I thought he was inspecting me as much as I him but, when I finally moved away, that's when I realized I was between him and his back door that he wanted to scamper down. Since then, I have left friendly offerings of nuts and raisins. Sometimes he comes out and lets me watch him shove all of this food into
his cheeks until he has to scamper down his hole to unload. Other times, like the deer in the poem, I know he has been there- not because of tracks he has left- but because of the food that is
Isn't it interesting Mary Oliver calls this unseen unchartered area of life real; as though referring to the rest, the seen, as illusion. Sounds a little like Patanjali, doesn't it?
Helen Keller stated, "It gives me a deep comforting sense that "things seen are temporal and things unseen are eternal."”
Do you believe in what your eyes cannot see? In class, I compared a restorative yoga practice with a fast-paced vinyasa or sculpt class. In a restorative class, we languish comfortably over props for about five minutes. While it may appear as though no work is being done, does that mean the body is working any less to restore balance and healing and health? I think not.
Dr. Edward Frost wrote, "We who gather here are not of one mind about what is and what we are, or about where the edges of the known world are, or whether there is a place to fall off into mystery. Some live only on the firm ground; others live with a toe dipping into the boundless,
ready for the sea to part or smaller miracles. To the skeptic I can only say, with Hamlet to Horatio, “There are more things in heaven and earth …than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”
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