If you have been following Deep Peace or this blog, you know that we just returned a couple of weeks ago from a pilgrimage down the Camino de Santiago in Spain. The Camino was full of magic and insights for so many of us, but on the path, we certainly passed local people who were just busy going about the everyday-ness of their lives. There are so many lessons about life that one can learn while traveling, particularly on pilgrimage, some from personal reflection and some from other people.
One thing that one of the participants said has really stuck with me. She said that she would try, when returning home, to notice all of the beauty and miracles that occur every day, not just when on pilgrimage.
Yesterday, I did just that. In my town, we are lucky enough to have one of the most beautiful gardens in the country, Elizabeth Park. Because it is right here, we all take it for granted and assume that every town must have something this lovely. I drive by it all the time, and my brother even lives right across the street. So, inspired by my travels and particularly the Camino, I decided to take a break and spend 15 minutes in the park instead of just zipping past! Going into the park with a beginner’s mind, I felt refreshed in the shade garden. I wondered off to see what might be blooming and ran into the most magnificent Dahlia’s I had ever seen - six feet tall, I had no idea they could get that high. Then, I went into the prized rose garden and took some time to smell the flowers (yes, what a cliche!).
This garden, just sitting there free and open to the public at any time. Fifteen minutes that I would have likely wasted on some needless task or social media. I left feeling restored and peaceful.
Is there some beautiful place in your town that you, too, walk or drive by without a thought? You might consider giving yourself a mini retreat by slowing down and seeing what’s there.
Copyright 2018 Nancy C Murray