There is a path that winds along the shore of Mud Bay from South Surrey to Tsawwassen. It's a goodly stroll for somebody just out for a casual walk although not a challenging one. It's a fairly flat path, well kept. Many people walk and cycle on it.
Last Sunday afternoon it was sunny and warm for February and relative to how the weather has been so grey and foggy and rainy. I and many other people had the same idea to walk along that path. When I arrived there the parking lot was full to overflowing ....
Walking there just observing the families, the couples, people walking their dogs, I was struck by this notion of how our paths cross those of other peoples. How our lives touch, in small ways for sure, but somehow touch. It could be a shared moment like enjoying a sunny afternoon. But there was something about meeting people's eyes, nodding heads as you walk past each other going opposite directions, acknowledging someone in that small way. Sharing a moment just for the moment. It makes me thoughtful about all the ways our lives touch each other, the way they intertwine.
That's not always in ways that elicit that sense of wonder that I was feeling on that sunny afternoon walking on the shores of Mud Bay. Sometimes that is people whose cries out into the world touch us or challenge us. Sometimes it is the person in the grocery store who can tell you that that produce, that plant that you were not able to identify is lemongrass and that it's used as seasoning but you don't eat it, you chop it up and pound a bit just to allow the flavors to release ....
I wonder how we allow ourselves, or don't, to flavor each other's lives in our crossing with each other. Sometimes the unexpected is the thing that brings out the delightful essence. It's the touch of sugar that brings out the spice .... Sometimes the flavour doesn't sit well with us at all ....
Our lives are intertwined, our paths do cross. How will I be with that? I wonder, if that spice that doesn't sit well with me in one dish might bring something to a different situation. I wonder if I were to sit down in conversation with it, with the person who is offering it, whether I would find out something unexpected ....
I have never walked that path along Mud Bay all the way from South Surrey to Tsawwassen. It seems like the kind of path that you would want to have a car at each end if you were walking it unless you had a full day to spend .... Most of my time there I spent simply watching. Watching the people go by. Watching the scenes emerge. Noticing the Pussy Willows opening, the first signs of Spring mixed amongst the brown leaves still hanging from Autumn and Winter ....
All lives intertwine somehow. And seasons come, Winter passes. People pass us. I guess my hope for myself is that I don't simply let those moments go by unacknowledged, if only to myself. If I can I might meet someone's eye and just acknowledge that we're sharing this moment of sunlight. That I appreciate the joy their dog is showing on that walk. That I noticed the anguish of their tears without interfering with them. That I can celebrate the joy of their engagement as the photographer takes their picture.
But it is I who am moved by this, I have no expectation that the other person has the same reaction. I'm simply enfolding it into who I am now hoping that it doesn't simply disappear, but in some small way becomes part of the fabric of my being ....
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musings of someone spiritual and oddly religious
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