Mindful Musings: Jan 13

“Divine Messengers”

By: Forrest Rivers

grayscale photo of two bird flying above glacier mountain

Running through

Snow caped peaks

Picking up speed

With the cool air

On my back

And no worries

But this moment….

The freedom to be

Is enough for me

In this space, I see

When the horizon

Comes into focus….

Running faster

I move,

 As golden wings appear

 And I lift off

 High above the mountains….

Soaring through

 The great open sky

 This love I find

 With wise eagles approaching….

 “Follow me,

These teachers say

 Into the realms of higher knowing

 To where we all are going,”

Nothing is impossible

When you keep the faith

True wisdom is our gate

Into a world

Where we all are soaring

As messengers of God’s glory.

Mindful Musings: Jan 9

“Last Night’s Dream”

By: Forrest Rivers

green grass field under cloudy sky during sunset

A sea of blue

But not an ocean

Ancient mountains

Ascending

To liberate we

From the illusion

Of separateness…..

Far below,

In the valley

I see:

What our minds

Cannot easily perceive:

The many merging into ONE….

Have I told you

Of last night’s dream?

One thousand seekers

Climbing the high peaks

To be:

What God sees

When IT turns

Within ITSELF.

Mindful Musings

“Nature’s Inspiring Qualities”

The Smoky Mountains vs. the "Smokey Mountains”: Who's Right?It would be an understatement to say that the natural world humbles our very being. For example, how many people have climbed to the top of a mountain and experienced the sentiment of feeling inconsequential? It’s impossible not to.

Anyone who has made the pilgrimage up a summit reports feeling profoundly humbled. For on the majestic peaks, our souls are moved by the sheer majesty of views that await us: a gorgeous colossus of trees, the mesmerizing stature of nearby mountaintops, the noble presence of soaring eagles and those subtle but dazzling flashes of white light that sparkle against the backdrop of a midday Sun.

As we inhale a slow, deep breath of the crisp mountain air, we become instantly aware of our own insignificance in relationship to the Cosmos. In so doing, we come to embrace the notion that humanity is but one tiny wave in a vast sea of oneness.

It’s from Mother Nature’s power to humble that we uncover the source of pure inspiration. We tap into this coveted but sacred energy through the Earth’s reservoirs of natural beauty. When we decide to descend back down the same mountaintop, we carry this feeling of renewal back with us, injecting it into our day-to-day lives.

For some people, this newfound inspiration finds its light through their commitment to previously neglected aspects of their being, such as their family and friends, their life’s work and especially their own spiritual growth. Yet, for others, transcendental experiences in nature will produce sudden and profound personal epiphanies.

In these moments of heightened clarity, we feel as though we’re viewing life through a new pair of eyes. In these moments, the art of existing finally starts to make sense, as one begins to live their life with a greater sense of purpose and awareness. In these instances, it’s not uncommon to make major life changes like leaving a longtime job or long-term relationship to devote oneself to a higher calling.

For others, nature so inspires them, that they’re moved to express these emotions of divine love through creative outlets like poetry, painting, photography and music. For example, well-known writers and poets like Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau and Walt Whitman were all so moved by nature that each felt compelled to share the wonder of it with others.

Further, entire forms of written expression such as Haiku (a unique form of poetry that emerged long ago in Japan) also remain popular and finds their medium through the observation of nature. And much of the remarkable art crafted by Indigenous peoples from around the world depicts various divine aspects of the Earth.

In fact, in my own dwelling, I have a beloved piece of artwork that was made by a Native American artist from the Hopi tribe in Arizona. This work of art is a mosaic of sacred images drawn from nature and painted on a smooth, rectangular slab of clay. This remarkable piece of work reminds me that the natural world is the purest source of creative inspiration.

Finally, cultural anthropologists have long accepted the notion that music—that most profound mode of universal expression—had its genesis long before the development of formal language in the earliest tribes. Today, still, the Indigenous peoples of the world reflect their love for the Earth in song and dance. It’s telling that more traditional music pays homage to Mother Nature. Listen to roots reggae, folk or bluegrass songs for confirmation!

(Excerpt from my essay: “Nature as Divine Love”)