Sitting with my morning cup of coffee, I reflexively picked up the Portland Press Herald. I admit it: I am a news junkie.
Then the headline hit me: “Trump calls for nuclear buildup”. I felt my pulse quicken. This shocking and horrifying news threatened to suck me in – as in a vortex like descent into what has become a daily barrage of ongoing threats from this President Elect.
Then, almost magically, something prompted me to look out the window. Almost instantaneously, my mind, heart, and soul were drawn away from the fear, rage, and frustration that had begun to rise as a result of reading the headline.
The unbelievably beautiful and vibrant winter scene on display, drew my spirit to another place. Suddenly, I am transported to a place of grace. What an incredible gift to live in this spot – and to be able to look out my living room window on the panorama of brilliant morning sunlight casting long shadows across our lawn. The unbelievably clear blue sky portended a gorgeous Maine winter day. .
For the next ½ hour I enjoyed a quiet meditation. . Snow covered maple trees glistened. An amazing calm prevailed over the tall pines. Goldfinches visited the feeder, and cardinals, juncos, and mourning doves began their daily foraging. I reveled in the simple elegance of this morning.
This wonderful gift of beauty reminded me again of how important our perspective is – particularly in the face of the unrelenting negative news that bombards us everyday. How do we live in these days? How do we keep ourselves whole in the face of destructive and violent attitudes that appear to be on the rise? How do we deal with the very real emotions of anger and fear that cloud our consciousness?
I am not a Pollyanna. I do not think that a walk in the woods solves all the world’s ills. However, for me I was reminded this morning of the importance of putting things on pause, of taking time to see the bigger picture, to allow myself to become engaged and energized by the simple immersion in nature. By putting down the newspaper and looking out my living room window provided a miraculous gift of hope and sense of wholeness.
I am not going to stop reading the newspaper and I am not going to stop listening to the news. But maybe I can determine to take more time to look out the window. It ‘s the mix that matters.