She’s done it many times; it’s grand

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 21, 2015

It’s a simple thing, really. No special equipment is required. There is no need for planning in advance, maneuvering, discussions or declarations.

It only takes a minute, but the experience can be awe-inspiring. This time of year it is especially easy to find yourself lost in the sheer wonder of the experience.

A few days ago, I heard Thomas Moore invite people to take this simple action and to do it as often as possible. To get the full effect, try it at different times because it is unique depending on when you do it.

I’ve done it myself many times and it never fails to bring a smile and a feeling of a deep sense of something amazing and timeless. Sometimes, it almost astounds me.

We live in a world constantly looking for the next form of entertainment. People, I think, are searching for something. Perhaps, most are not even sure what it is they seek.

Therefore, we look for it in electronic gadgets. We search for it on a television or movie screen. Some, and they are beginning to be the rare ones, look in books.

There is this desire to find something that encourages us to remain hopeful. Everyone wants to know that life is moving as it should and that he or she is a part of that great movement.

Even when we cannot quite put a name to this longing, it is there knocking. Maybe, that is why we are addicted to so much busyness. We feel the need to keep moving, convincing ourselves that the movement, the doing, will show us what it is we long to see.

What if this simple thing could, for even a few breaths, give us a sense of what it is we are trying so hard to find? Is it possible that keeping our noses to the grindstone, (whatever the grindstone is for each person) is not the way to live so much of our lives.

That is why I agree with the wise Mr. Moore. It is why at the end of yoga class on Monday night, I invited my students to join me this week in this simple practice. In fact, I did it as I headed home at the end of class.

Funny, when I mentioned this, everyone in the class nodded and smiled.

“Yes,” they all said. “It is amazing.”

Such a simple thing, but all of us in that class connected to it. All of us recognized it’s potential. We knew this because we had at some time in our lives, lived the experience.

Younger children do this without giving it a thought. It comes naturally to them because they still live in that place where awe is a part of every day of their lives. They don’t need reminding or encouraging. Life is unfolding around them and they jump in without hesitation.

Today, right now in this minute, I invite everyone reading these words to join me this week in doing this one easy thing. Make the time, the few breaths it takes to stop and be part of something grand.

Oh, I suppose this needs a bit more explanation in order for you to understand what is required. Well, here goes.

Look up.

That’s it. Just stop wherever you are and look up at the sky.

This time of year, during the day, it is likely to be that beautiful blue that only seems to show up in October. Take in the space, the great expanse that is the sky overhead.

Tonight, get up from the computer and the television, stop texting and twittering and Facebooking. Step out your door and look up at the night sky filled with stars that look so close it’s easy to imagine reaching out and touching them.

It’s simple to stop and to look up with a sense of wonder and awe and, for a moment, see the face of God looking back at you.


Nancy Blackmon is a writer and yoga teacher.