Learning from nature

By Elise Smith

 

“You are part of the universe, no less than the stars and trees, and you have a right to be here. And whether it is clear to you or not, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should…”

Desiderata

 

We are part of the universe and our lives are governed by the same laws that govern the rest of nature.  We take time to grow and time to heal.  Our lives will always move in cycles because that is the universal law.  We need time to rest and recuperate, as do all other living things.

Taking time

Nature always takes her time.  Great oaks don’t become great overnight.  They also lose a lot of leaves, branches, and bark in the process of becoming great. Everything of value, of beauty, of majesty in the universe, took time to become so.  So it will be with our own growth and development.  Let us recognize this and be gentler on ourselves when assessing our own progress.

It takes time to build confidence, to build a healthy body, or a positive outlook.  It takes time to build a business of value or to create our own financial independence.

Cycles

Nature has a rest from time to time.  The soil needs a rest, and bears and snakes hibernate.  We can learn from this; we need to take time out to rest, review, ponder, and be.

If you decide that you are indispensable and that you must always have your nose to the grindstone, then you can live your life like that.  Your belief that you can never rest will be your reality until such time as you decide differently.

When we do make rest part of our lifestyle, like the soil we become so much more productive when we work.

Make rest a necessity, not an objective!

Love

Have you ever wondered why we love babies so much?  We love babies because they are so open and vulnerable.  They say to us “Love me.  I need you and I can’t make it alone.”

As we grow older, many of us come to believe that we have to fake self-sufficiency.  We pretend.  We say, “I’m all right, I’m OK, I’m tough, I can handle it,” while inside we may be frightened, lonely, and craving for someone to listen.

There is a myth that says, “You had better not admit that you are vulnerable or lonely, or you will look weak.” It also says, “Don’t be honest about how you really feel, or someone will sink the boot in.”  The myth is back to front.  Others know when we are being open and sincere and they love us for it.  It is only when we fake it and pretend that we are OK, that we get into trouble.  It is ironic that those of us who are the most desperate for affection, do the most pretending that we don’t need it.

Love is not ooey gooey. Love is strength and commitment.  To love someone can mean telling them what they don’t want to hear.  Love is courage, and takes a lot more courage to say “I’m scared,” or “I love you,” than it does to clout someone around the ears.

Love is respect, for ourselves and others.  It is all about allowing people to be where they are and loving them anyway.  The moment we say, you do this and then I will love you, that isn’t love – it is manipulation.

Love is about looking for the good in people, and if we can do that, and do it consistently, then our own happiness is guaranteed. As our life is a reflection of ourselves, the more love and beauty that we perceive, the more we are growing and the more we are becoming, and so for all of us, LOVE IS EVERYTHING.

Elise Smith

 

 

 

 

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