Contemplation is a lovely word. It implies thought without judgement – thought, mixed with a good helping of simple observation and absorption via all the senses. And the, listening to what the object of contemplation is telling you – again, without any desired outcome. Contemplation can lead to happy surprises. It almost certainly leads to learning.
Today, and almost every Sunday, tends to be a contemplative day for me. It’s a day when I put things aside: no work, no peaks to attain – nothing to do really, except for garden chores like picking blackberries and beans. And certainly, Sundays are days for walking with Abby in the park and letting my mind wander down whichever path it chooses. Sometimes it chooses nothing at all, and I suspect those are the best times.
I always know that I have been contemplating successfully when I don’t remember a single thing I learned or otherwise realized. Those perfect moments tend to vanish like a puff of smoke, but I also trust that they remain somewhere in a small, important part of my mind that directs me into the future and helps me make choices. They become part of my “gut instinct.”
Today, I spent a good deal of time really “getting it” in my bones what a charmed life I lead. I understood how this life, this happiness, this joy, has nothing whatsoever to do with wealth or with anything that I own: it has to do solely with attitude and the experiences I have. I also understood that when I get excited about adventures, like the Great Walks in New Zealand or the John Muir Trail or 6 months travelling in Europe, I don’t for one moment have to consider money. It’s not part of the equation. I must simply take the leap, do what my heart dictates and trust that it is the right thing to do.
And so, that realization adds to my joy.
I also learned something else – and this was yesterday – I learned that a tent that weighed two pounds when dry, weighs approximately 10 pounds when wet.