Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Ok. Has another week really gone by? I just celebrated one month in Portland!
This past weekend Doug and I went hiking in the Columbia River Gorge with our friend Tommy. It was one of those amazingly warm days with blue skies forever and a breeze. As we were driving to the trailhead, Mt. Hood devoured our attention, pointing us to the heavens. At 11,250 feet, it stands out amongst all other snow-capped mountains. On a hillside above the river there were houses with big picture windows facing the mountain. I said outloud: What would it be like to have Mt Hood in your daily view?
It got me to thinking about a quote I recently read by the Buddha: We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves. It's not some esoteric spiritual concept. What we put into our mind shapes our perspective of how we see the world. If you have ever looked at fashion or fitness magazines you've probably also experienced the feelings of inadequecy that they foster. Or the peaceful feeling that is oftentimes followed by time spent in nature whether it's a hike in the mountains, some time on the beach or simply going for a walk in your local park.
What are you filling your mind with? What places do you visit? What TV shows and movies do you watch? How much time do you spend in nature, creating art, reading poetry?
Perhaps Mary Oliver says it best in this simple line from the poem above:
keep my mind on what matters,
which is my work,
which is mostly standing still and learning to be
Here's to being astonished, to filling the mind with things that bring us closer to our intentions.
Lots of love,