Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Unhurried Nature

Many of the great prophetic voices said this same thing in different ways. Today's Teabag Tarot is a translation of Lao Tzu's version: Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished. The version from the book of Ecclesiastes reads: There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.

We learn to rush through things, to hurry every process we can. Yet most things occur in their own course of time. When children or animals are born prematurely, a range of consequences can happen. When fruit is plucked before its time, its flavor and sweetness suffer. When we rush through traffic, we miss signs and cause accidents. No matter what motion or growth or activity is concerned, hurrying rarely helps.

I grew up around the Ecclesiastes version, including one turned into a folk song, Turn, Turn, Turn. Children often want to grow up more quickly. In today's bustle, even the seasonal celebrations are rushed: Halloween beginning right after school starts in September; Christmas following on the heels of Halloween; summer clothing showing up in February. The result of all this hurrying is anxiety ~~ the constant concern of never being ready, never being or having enough.

With one holiday over and another on the way, my plan is to allow for the pace of Nature. My trip to the beach reinforced the notion that nothing I do can change the progress of time or the fickleness of Nature. I wanted more time on the sands of the beach. Instead, I had time inside, watching the storms blow through. Quieting my body to the rhythm of Nature, allowing my mind to relax its vigilant pace. Winter is the time of Nature's hibernation. Rather than rush frantically around, I will allow for the quiet, leave time for rest, wake up to what Nature is teaching.

How do you pace yourself? What do you attempt to rush? What causes you to be more anxious? Over what do have control? What more can you learn from Nature about pacing?

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