Currents of the Universal Being

“In the woods, we return to reason and faith. There I feel that nothing can befall me in life,-no disgrace, no calamity-…Standing on the bare ground,-my head bathed by the blithe air, and uplifted into infinite space,-all mean egotism vanishes. I become a transparent eye-ball; I am nothing; I see all; the currents of the Universal Being circulate through me; I am part or particle of God.” – Emerson, Nature

Emerson and Thoreau are my all-time favorites, and I got hooked on the Transcendental movement in college (thank you, Prof. Smith).  Sometimes, now and then, I break out my college texts for some light academic reading because I’m a dork like that. 

As I was walking the dogs on this gorgeous, blue sky, sunny October Sunday, I caught myself looking up into the changing leaves and breathing in everything around me.  I may not be good at living in the moment emotionally, but when it comes to observing nature and my senses, I’ve got it down pat.  Whenever I’m in nature, whether it be on the ocean or in the woods, all of my senses become alertly aware.  I can see, smell, taste, feel, and hear.  This, in large part, is what aided my initial belief that a higher power exists.  Just as Emerson says, “I am nothing; I see all…I am part or particle of God.” 

The other realization I had today is that whenever I am in nature or near the water, “all mean egotism vanishes,” I am restored to faith and reason, and I truly feel that “nothing can befall me in life,-no digrace, no calamity.”  This is because when I am in nature, I am outside not just of my house or my car, but outside of myself.  I am a small part of something much larger than myself and I realize that I have very little control in this life, and what a relief that is!  I become humbled and grateful for the breaths that I can take and for another day of life that my higher power has given me.  When I realize that I am just a small part of the larger whole, my problems don’t seem so all-consuming anymore.  Reason and faith shine through the darkness clouding my mind.

Even if you live in the cement jungle, just look straight up into the sky and take a deep breath.  Nature is all around us – sometimes we just forget to see it.

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Tomorrow is a new day…

“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

I love this Emerson quote. I try to have the mindset he describes above. I used to always either be dwelling on yesterday or worrying about tomorrow. A much more enjoyable and peaceful way to live is to be in the moment and live one day at a time. Whatever mistakes or slipups I make today, I will reflect on before my head hits the pillow and I will take whatever learning experience I can get from it. Then, I have to let the guilt or shame or anxiety (or whatever the feeling may be) go. Otherwise, I will not be useful to anyone tomorrow because I will be stuck in yesterday. Like Emerson says, we can only do what we can do. There are many things I cannot do, and many things that I can. So, I may as well focus only on the things I CAN do. It makes for a much more productive experience. Half the time, most of the blunders I think I’ve made and all the worrying I do is nonsense anyway! The spirit of the universe and my higher power have more things in store for me when I wake up in the morning, so I better make some room for them. Every morning is a new beginning. Thank God! Goodnight.