We progress by experiencing what is happening with our full awareness. We should never go through any condition or event without perceiving the full essence of that experience through our own senses. (Gregge Tiffen – a selection from Life in the World Hereafter: The Journey Continues found in The Journey Continues: The Legacy for Generations – November, 2010)
This post could just as easily be titled ‘What the World Series & Two Lovely Brits Taught Me About Life’. Beyond being extremely happy that the Houston Astros won (5-1 in Game 7 of a history making series – in case you haven’t read anything but The Zone), I learned and was reminded of how much our senses have to tell us. I also learned about grace and embracing life. Who knew that the World Series and two British women guests could do that?
Beyond signaling that something may be amiss (food tasting spoiled, smelling fire where there should be none, seeing a car coming before we cross the road) it is through our senses that we experience life. We choose whether to experience it fully, noticing sights, smells, tastes, sounds, and how something feels to our touch, or to move through life doing one thing after another without that awareness.
There are times when we move through life mostly unaware of what our senses are telling us. We operate robotically through much of daily life. The World Series reminded me of just how often I do so. That started last week when I turned off the sound for game 2 and noticed the effects on my other senses (http://cindyreinhardt.com/blog/turn-off-the-sound).
I was curious to continue the experiment in the games that followed – not just having the sound off, but rather intentionally being aware of the sensory experience while at the same time simply enjoying that ‘my’ Astros were playing in the Series (and trying not to obsess over the possibility that they might not win). Watching several games with different levels of sound (or no sound at all) and having B&B guests here for some games and not for others made for interesting self-observation and awareness. As the series continued on, I was aware that the emotional roller coaster and tension was heightened with sound just as I noticed last week. And, I noticed other senses as well.
During the final two games with the Championship on the line, I had the added bonus of two lovely British guests here at the Dragonfly House. I wasn’t sure that I’d be able to watch the games here (yes I had a plan b!), as these guests had come early to prepare for going into a two-week spiritual retreat at a nearby center. I explained my interest in the games and asked if they would mind quiet TV in the background. They graciously said ‘yes, of course’ and became curious about this thing called baseball. Their grace had me wonder if I would be the same were the roles reversed and I was preparing for a spiritual retreat.
They joined me to watch, and one was especially curious about the game and how it’s played. Responding provided a direction for my energy, dissipating some of my tension. And, it was a joy to share.
Despite my intention, I’m aware that I didn’t taste much of the dinner I’d prepared and ate as game 7 began. But, I do believe that I tasted victory in the chocolate consumed as the game neared the end and the win seemed certain. I definitely felt the tingling in my body as the tension released and I reveled in the celebration unfolding on the screen. My British guests retired before game’s end, but one came out this morning with her ipad to show me the British newspaper Guardian headline ‘Astros Win World Series’ and noted that she probably wouldn’t have noticed or had a clue what it meant.
Their curiosity and grace highlights for me the importance of embracing what life brings as these lovely women did. Combined with coming to greater awareness of my senses, I opened the door to gratitude, not just for the Astros victory, but for my heightened awareness of how much our senses have to offer and a newfound commitment to sustain that awareness as I navigate through this journey of life.
Color me grateful!