The warmer months that Spring and Summer bring are always accompanied by a little bit of magic. Summer holds promise, adventure, and hope. We are allowed to start fresh with the changing of the seasons, and we gain a new perspective when we are able to get out in nature. Gaining a sense of clarity and connection help us strengthen our intuition, introspection, and realizations.
As I was running the other day, I noticed the beautiful lake around the school I take my usual route around. There was a boy fishing behind the enclosed gate that surrounds the lake, and he seemed so contented and focused (even though there are no fish in the lake around the school). He was just there, being. I watched the boy with wonderment in his eyes, and I smiled at the concept of fishing in a fish-less lake. What an appropriate analogy for how we should strive to live our lives: to have no expectations in our efforts, just doing and being, and living out our own passions for the sake of living them out. Just like unconditional love: you give out love with no expectations, being contented in knowing that you may not receive any love back, and accepting and honoring people/places/things for where they are in their own path.
My thought further evolved as I noticed how happy the boy was to be partaking in something so simple. He didn’t worry whether or not he’d be judged for fishing in a lake with no fish. His will to fish justified his actions, and that was enough for him. He was enough. Another concept so many of us have a hard time wrapping our minds around: believing you are enough. The truth of the matter is, you are enough. In fact, in order to fully engage in the human experience, you need to learn how to unconditionally love yourself, which can be a challenging feat since we are our own worst critics. But know this: the whole universe resides in you, and you have the capability of having it all or nothing at all contingent on your will. Whether you chose to tap open your ambitions or coast through life by the skin of your teeth, know that you are enough. You don’t need to lose that extra 10lbs, you don’t need to get that promotion at work, you don’t need to buy that new car in order to be worthy of happiness and love. A huge part of receiving happiness and love is accepting yourself for where you are in your own path.
Continuing my run, the boy and the fish-less lake became smaller and smaller from my sight, and I was hit with the city skyline filled with flickering lights, orange and pink stratus clouds, and a cooler breeze coming from the east as the sun was setting. As I quickly turned my head, I immediately realized the construction going on in nearby neighborhood, which deflated my romantic ideas of the skyline. This made me think about the concept of perspective. It’s funny to think that how we see and perceive things can change in an instant. Our views can become so tainted or elated in an instant based on whether or not you have a good filter. I blame the instantaneous change of perspective on our society, and how we are all craving instant gratification and relief. Computers and all the programs that come with them (especially social media) have taken a toll on our nervous systems, mental health, and overall sense of well-being, compromising our physical health as well with it’s tempting invitation for one to become completely sedentary. Comparing our lives that we experience every day with snippets and highlights of other people’s lives is damaging and creates unnecessary feelings of sadness, depression and inadequacy. Highlight reels are not an accurate depiction of someone’s overall life. It’s the small things that make up the biggest moments. To take the good with the bad is the only way one can live life, otherwise we’d never have anything to celebrate.
Further, I blame our ability to flippantly change our perspectives on having too many expectations, which is a result of selfish love, which results from a lack of unconditional love, which again, is defined as loving things for where they are (whether that be a person, place, thing, or yourself) in their own path and the collective path. We have to start loving others unconditionally in order to love ourselves, and we have to start loving ourselves unconditionally in order to love others.
As I end this passage, I return with thoughts on my original statement… When in doubt, always return to nature. Perhaps we should all do as the bears do, and hibernate until the weather turns pleasant enough to get outside. At least in our sleep we are more intuitive and spiritual than being zombies in front of TVs, iPads, or some other form of entertainment that takes us farther away from the Truth, thickening the veil to obstruct our view of what we really are… which is pure, unconditional and unadulterated love.