Dragonflies are reminders that we are light and we can reflect light in powerful ways if we choose to do so.
~ Robyn Nola
We speak of things “catching our gaze,” “calling our attention,” “grabbing our focus,” and those are all quite precise ways of speaking, because as we’re wandering the world, things solicit our attention, draw us into dialog, a kind of conversation without words. A fallen leaf on the ground calls my attention, and so I slow down to stop and gaze at it. And so, in my experience, this leaf is not dead, though it’s been lying on the ground for days. It has its own agency. It has its own power, its potency. And so, it is with everything we experience.
~ David Abrams, The Ecology of Perception, Emergence Magazine
Today is day 9 of our sort-of-isolation from the kids, big and little. While it’s been said that if anyone was going to get sick from having attended the birthday party, they’d be showing symptoms by now, we continue to err on the side of caution. We’re debating between ten days and fourteen days. There is no firm science for either position. We’ll break our quarantine when it feels most comfortable to do so. (Is it called a quarantine? One definition is “to impose isolation on” so it’s close enough.) It is a “sort-of-quarantine” because, as you might remember, we’re still visiting with the kids, big and little. It’s just that we do so outside, at a distance, wearing masks.
It is also August and the beginning of our second month in the Bogs. In case you’re wondering, I named this area the Bogs shortly after we moved to NE Ohio way back in the year 2000. We’d been on a few hikes and I noticed that even on high ground, after climbing a pretty good hill, the ground was still boggy in places. (There are, in fact, real bogs here in the Bogs.) It must have been a good year for rain. This year is not nearly as boggy. In fact, I’ve been marveling at how dry the paths from here to there continue to be even after a weekend of rain. The ground needed it and has been absorbing the rain quite efficiently.
The break and sort-of-quarantine has given me more time to take some walks and some photographs. Some days I take the big camera. Some days, just the phone will have to do because I’m feeling too lazy to lug around anything else. Or, as was the case over the weekend, rain was moving in and out, and I prefer not to take the big camera out in the rain. I’ve done it, but it’s best not to.
I have also had time to buckle down on the Yoga Anatomy course that was part of the Yoga Darsana class. We have until October to finish it. I thought I’d be finished with it by now, but I’ve been procrastinating. I put it off until we finished the main lectures, thinking that I’d have plenty of time to do it throughout the summer months. Then the pandemic came around, the world got wonky, and my brain went a little wonky with it. It’s been difficult to concentrate and learn, at times. Now that I’ve had a little rest and some regular walks, my brain seems to be working again. I hope it stays that way until I finish the last three modules (there are ten modules). It has all been fascinating and I’ve learned a lot about bones and joints and breath. The last four modules are of the experiential variety so I actually get to put some of what I’ve learned into practice. That said, I’ve discovered that standing in Tadasana (Mountain Pose) for ten minutes can be tiring. That, in and of itself, was a learning experience.
The Spiritual Ecology class ended last Friday. I’m so glad I signed up for it. If you’re interested in such things, keep an eye on Emergence Magazine. You might have to sign up for their emails (which really aren’t that intrusive). They are offering the course again in the fall. We met once a week for four weeks, each session lasting 2.5 hours. I’m not sure if they will keep that format, but it gives you some idea of how much time it takes up. There is a tea break about halfway through each session, which was nice. And the rest of the time went very quickly, probably because I found the subject matter so interesting.
One of the things that fascinated me most was something one of the other participants said. She is an indigenous person from Peru and she said that English is a poor language for expressing a natural connection to nature and the land, almost a barrier to it. In her native language there is a saying that roughly translates as when you give to the land/earth, you give to yourself because there is no separation. To put another spin on it, what you do to the earth, you do to yourself (you could also say what you do to yourself, you do to the earth). What you do to others (human and other than human), you do to yourself. Most major religions have similar maxims. What stood out for me was the clear notion that there is no separation. Perhaps if those major religions made that clearer, we’d be in less of a mess.
Well, I think I’ve taken up enough of your time today. Thank you so much for visiting with me. Let’s check out the sunset this evening. I’ll meet you across the road at the edge of the cornfield. Sunset is scheduled for 8:40 PM. There’s a chance of thunderstorms but there’s a better chance there won’t be any (according to earlier forecasts; that could change). The clouds have been contributing to some lovely sunsets lately.
Please be safe, be well, and be kind.
A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy: 1,496) Walks, and the body that carries me on my walks. 1,497) Learning more about the ways of playing. 1,498) All of the critters living in what I think of as the milkweed garden. We see all kinds of visitors, from honeybees to butterflies to tree frogs and more. 1,499) Exploring my own inner horizons and edges and landscapes. If you were to describe your own body as a landscape, what would it be? I see many within this one body and one life. 1,500) Cornfields and sunsets, barns, chickens and sunrises.
- Confirmed cases of Covid-19 here, in the county we’re in: 711 (60 deaths). I think the number was somewhere around 503 when we arrived in NE Ohio on July 1.
- Confirmed cases at home: 123 (3 deaths). It was 103 when we left.