A couple of years ago (has it been that long—wow!), I lived for a year near the Gulf of Mexico in Corpus Christi, Texas. Hubby and I used the opportunity to spend some great time on the beach at the Padre Island National Seashore. Cool bird flights, waves, dunes, and warm seas aside, my joy was in finding the shells.
At first, I took an approach of walking down the beach looking at the sand near my feet for interesting shells. Of course I picked up almost everything at first and then got more selective. I also found that I had limited control over what was available; some days I’d see almost all of one kind of shell, or one day would be starfish day, but after that I wouldn’t see any for weeks.
Then I let go of my brain. Instead of worrying about missing something if I didn’t focus on the inches of sand just beyond my toes, I started looking farther away and scanning larger areas with a general sense of visual awareness. The result was that I found fewer shells total, but it was easier to settle on rarer and more interesting finds, from starfish to sand dollars. Maybe I gave my brain a chance to integrate the larger scale field of vision, but it felt like relaxing my brain and allowing the right shells to appear for me to collect.
So, say you want to find or manifest something. I assume you take some kind of methodical approach, covering the ground in a structured way to make sure you haven’t missed anything, right? You focus on the details at your feet, so to speak. That seems like the best way to get results. But taking a methodical approach may actually keep you from seeing the most valuable opportunity on the larger shore of possibilities.
I suggest breathing, relaxing, and letting your mind’s eye rove over the larger landscape of your life. Allow what “pops up” or lurks in the periphery of your vision or reading or hearing to get your attention and then move in closer to study it without expectations. If it feels right, dig in to see how big the shell really is. Might be a keeper.
Signposts on the Hermit’s Path
I was taken by Amy White’s recent post on her red leaf childhood experience. Her awareness was so wondrous, and yet, what is wondrous to one may not be understood by others. She tells a fascinating story of healing from having that wonder rejected.