Nov 8th, 2011 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

The Calm of a Forest

Doe, a deer, a female deer, and two of her family casually saunter among the acorns in our side yard. Mother and one of her offspring gently tease each other as they continue their search.  It is a scene bathed in early morning sunlight, as the long winter shadows alternately shade and hide them.  A squirrel frolics among their long legs, competing for the same acorns they seek. The sunlight acts as if it is a strobe flood light picking out now and again the deer as they cross from shadow to light.

This is the morning’s gift.  It is worthy of pause and hesitation to simply sit, enjoying what nature has wrought right at our doorstep. There is no hunter to invade or interrupt this pastoral scene.  There are no hawks to threaten the tiny squirrel.  There is only the presence of those going about their morning rituals.

In the rural countryside, of such are mornings often made.  Sometimes the creatures emerge earlier than on other days.  On others, like us on occasion, they seem to have chosen to sleep in.  Their routines are largely influenced, here at least, by their acute sense of safety, lack of threat, absence to any impending attack. Were it otherwise, they would not choose to be here, on these last days of the bow hunting season.   Fortunately, on this spot, there is no danger.  We do not allow or invite any such interference with the safety of such friends as these.

All Creatures, Great and Small

We learn from such creatures.  We  learn that, like us, they savor the comfort and quiet of their surroundings. Like us, they forage for nourishment, which helps them get through another day.  Like us, they interact with others who would share their space, a squirrel, a few crows, a gentle wren or sparrow.  They don’t want for a great deal, just to be left alone, given the respect of their right of trespass here. They are not aggressors.  They do not seek to disturb the landscape.  They just wish to come and go, unperturbed, not offended by surprise, allowed to be.

Were it that we all could claim our space similarly.  Were it that our harmony with nature and the universe could be so serene and free.  Were it that the troubles of today could be as few as the deer, who reside and roam safely on our land.

Likely it can be, for some.  Possibly it could be for others.  Choosing to find ways to achieve such imperturbable moments  could be available were we to seek it out. There is, that which comes to our awareness such a choice.  Those moments, while not often given permission to direct us, could were we to choose it.  Those moments are like a long drink of cooling water on a hot summer’s day.  They are like the breeze gently blowing the leaves as we walk along a well known path.  They are like a sudden recollection of a time or a person or an event that gives us a brief pleasure of reflection.

How is it we fail to take advantage of those precious gems that come unexpectedly, without provocation, are just there and then gone?  Why is it we don’t urge ourselves to be alert to their coming and welcoming them to stay for awhile?

Reading this now allows you to decide that tomorrow morning, you will do just that, take advantage of the surprises of inspiration and exhilaration that offer the calm of an early morning.

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