“The world is full of magical things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.”
I am so grateful for my life, and there are many things that I really appreciate. One of those amazing things is my glasses! When I was younger, I noticed that many people wore glasses. I thought, I have great vision. I bet I will never have to wear glasses. Then, in 1996, I was on an airplane with my husband, Dick. I was reading the book Peace Is Every Step by one of my greatest teachers, Thich Nhat Hanh.
I was holding the book an arm’s length away, and Dick asked, “Can’t you put the book closer to you?” I thought, Oh, okay, and moved the book closer. But when I did, everything became a little blurrier. So I looked at Dick and said, “I can’t see the words as well.” He smiled, and said, “Welcome to the forty and over crowd!” In that moment, I was in shock. I needed glasses!
Well, I stubbornly waited another couple of years, keeping my books a comfortable distance away until I finally had to admit that I really did need glasses. Now, seventeen years have passed, and when I put my glasses on, everything becomes crystal clear. Oh, the precious gift of eyesight. What can I do with this gift? I spend time noticing, being in the moment, and becoming aware of everything around me. I believe, in this life, we are meant to be as aware as we can in all moments of the day. We can develop “20/20” awareness, giving people and things our complete attention.
I love to look at beautiful scenery and images, of course—things that are “pleasing to the eye.” I love to look at people, look into their eyes, and see the light they are shining outward. With a daily practice of Focused Attention, I see you. I see the people I interact with and encounter throughout the day. I simply appreciate the beings they are, knowing that we are fellow traveling companions in this world. Judgments, expectations, and opinions of others are simply me writing a story for them. It’s not their story; it’s mine. My mother used to say, “You never know what another person feels or is going through unless you can walk in their shoes.”
I get to know my mind through the practice of sitting with myself every morning before I go out into my day. I connect with this Truth: We are all loving beings in this “boat of life” together. I stop writing stories for myself and others, and in this way, my meditation is like putting on a pair of glasses that brings life into focus. I see more clearly, and I am not hindered by any “blurriness” that may interfere with living in joy and harmony.
We can look at the world moment by moment, seeing beauty everywhere. Try this today: pause and ask yourself, “What am I aware of in this moment? What do I see?” You will be amazed that a pause like this from time to time throughout the day brings what is real and meaningful in the moment into crystal-clear focus.
I am thankful for the glasses I wear on my eyes, and I am grateful for the gift of sight. My practice is a gift that helps me to see the ordinary in life as a series of extraordinary miracles. How we see each day is a choice. We have the power to shape our reality. So, I ask you, How do you see the world?
With love and blessings,
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By the way, friends, August is National Eye Exam Month. So, if you haven’t had your eyes checked recently, here is a good excuse to make that appointment!