Spiritual Practice@Home: Today, I Am Alive

Dandelion by Yutaka Seki, flickr CC

This is an invitation to stop and look, for just one minute. Stop. And Look.

And contemplate this: today, you are alive. Today, I am alive.

In this moment, what is happening? Do you notice the people around you? Do you recognize the great good fortune it is to simply be here now?

I tried this last week when I was feeling rushed, and flustered, and exhausted. Suddenly, I noticed the beautiful sky. I saw that the autumn leaves had started to turn glorious gold and vibrant red. I breathed more deeply. My heart slowed down. My day after that moment had a different quality than my day before that moment.

I remember a conversation I had with a friend once about why time seems to go by so quickly. Years fly by. Weeks seem to barely exist. One day it’s the beginning of a week, or month, or year, and the next day (the next day!) it is the end of the week, the month, the year.

Where did that time go? Why does it go so quickly? My friend suggested that it is our involvement with technology, with facebook and email and text messages and television (or hulu or netflix) that keeps us so busy that we lose our time to these activities.

That may be part of if, but I think it’s our distraction that makes time go so quickly. Maybe time goes by so quickly because we forget to pay attention to this one moment, right now.

What is happening to you in this moment? What do you see, smell, hear? What can you touch or taste right now?

Sometimes we are rushing to the future so quickly and worrying so distractedly about what has already passed , that we forget to be awake and aware in this moment.

Take one minute to become aware right now. See what you see, but with the eyes of a child who is seeing it for the first time. Don’t take it for granted. Imagine if you didn’t have any of this…these people, this view of the sky, this couch, this desk, this meal, this water, this clothing, this home, this front door.

Rest in this one moment and remember: Today, right now, I am alive. And I am grateful for it.