Sunday, August 14, 2011

Being Present

‘Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis
on which the world earth revolves – slowly, evenly, without
rushing toward the future. Live the actual moment.
Only this moment is life.’ ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Interesting words and even more interesting thoughts here from Leo Babauta (Zen Habits) on the "Power of  Being Present."

This article really struck a chord with me.   The more I read - the more philosophical I became.  I started thinking about all the things in my daily life which bring me calm and peace and how by focusing on a specific task,  I was in fact practising the art of  "being present".  

Gardening obviously was the first thing which sprung to mind.   There is something just so special about working with nature.   To dig a hole and plant a seed and then see it grow into a beautiful shrub or tree is such a wonderful sense of creation.   Gardens are just such magical places to be.   In the solace of my garden I am surrounded by memories.  Memories of my mother and my grandmother who provided me with the inspiration and love of gardening.  Their presence is so strong - warm and comforting.

I have also  been known to solve all manner of conflicts and problems in the garden.    As I dig and mulch, prune and rake - imaginary conversations take place in my head and before you know it - problem solved!  

"Being present becomes, then, a way to handle any problem, any distraction, any stressor. It allows everything else to fade away, leaving only you and whatever you’re dealing with right now."

"No matter how out-of-control your day is, no matter how stressful your job or life becomes, the act of being present can become an oasis.  It can change your life. "

Painting (like gardening) is my oasis.  It is place I go when I just need to focus on one task.  It allows me time to clear my head and become totally absorbed in the moment.   It allows me  to "be present".

A blank canvas;  the gentle tones of Alisan Krauss in the background;  a beautiful day in the Valley - Bliss!

Simple pleasures.

"Be joyful in whatever you're doing, grateful that you're able to do that task and fully appreciate every little movement and tactile sensation of the task.  You'll learn that anything can be an amazing experience, anything can be a miracle. "

How lucky am I to have been able to find that calm in the middle of the traffic of my life.  
I hope you have too! 

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  1. Thankyou for your lovely comments about my new bundle of joy. Have a lovely week xx

  2. Being able to remove yourself from the speed that life is whizzing by and living in the moment is definitely something to strive for. I do try and remember to do it! Thanks for the reminder.
    Just been catching up with some posts - congrats to your girl. There are some exciting times ahead as she embarks on her career.
    I have to also say that I Love what you did with your dining chairs. They look just amazing! I'm sure it wasn't a little project though.
    Have a great week in your lovely sunshine.

  3. What a superb post. Really, really challenging and thought-provoking. I forever struggle with this. I am always planning and looking ahead. I am truly trying to learn to stay in the present more, and enjoy all the gorgeous moments I have been given in each day.

    THANK YOU for the reminder!



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