Updated: Mar 17
Day 10/366 days Towards Self-Mastery
Right now we're in the middle of the maelstrom of bushfire storms here in Australia. Forests and homes have been burned to the ground. Many, many lives have been lost; human and animals, trees, plants, critters. insects. Many people are left homeless and animal shelters are overflowing with injured wildlife.
It's a time to start over. Many have to reconsider their priorities and to rebuild their lives.
For us as a nation it's a time to reconsider our priorities. To relook at what we consider important for our future and that of our children. Is it the GPD? Or are we going to demand a greater emphasis on the needs of every living being of this nation? Those decisions are on our minds "now".
This mornings inspiration asks me to consider that there is no other time than now. The past is gone, the future is uncertain.
Now is when we can choose to live fully.
What are you missing of life that you could be fully engaging with now? What will it take to bring your attention to your life in the here and now?
As I consider this question about noticing life in the now, living life in the now, I think of how much our planet has changed in the span of my lifetime.
My interest and focus is, and has always been the quality of our food, and our mental, physical and emotional health and well-being. Probably because I'm quite a foodie who grew up on a farm with the biggest veggie patch I've ever since seen, and our own chickens for eggs and meat. And probably because I've observed the human condition and the misery that holding onto old stories creates in my life and those around me, creates.
Here's what I remember about food growing up:
Tomato plants that needed staking to hold their delicate stems off the ground, and tomatoes that tasted like a burst of juicy sunshine.
Iceberg lettuce that actually had a taste, crisp and green and huge and heavy, straight from the garden.
Sweet french beans picked from the vine before dinner time.
Cucumbers that we ate like apples.
Oranges and mandarins that were peeled at the foot of the tree before biting into the juicy richness that dripped down from our jaws.
Rich eggs with orange yolks collected each morning from our chicken runs. We fed our chickens on the leftovers from our kitchen table.
Apples that tasted like honey, and that went off in the fruit bowl if we didn't eat them, which rarely happened. That I think is a good sign, given the quality of apples today. They look great, have very little taste and last forever!
Fresh milk delivered in crates to the door each morning.
Fish we caught ourselves, taking our fishing lines, and in those days, beach nets to the local beach, and bringing home a feed of fish and some extras to put in the freezer.
Home cooked meals, and mealtimes around the kitchen table with everyone present to give thanks for the food that we were lucky enough to have so readily available to us, before tucking in.
I also remember curled up vegemite sandwiches for school lunches. That's my least favourite foodie memory.
Today as I consider the poor quality of our food with little taste and long shelf life, and the deteriorating health of the ageing and younger population, I wonder if all the interference we've exacted on nature's way has enhanced our life or if we've taken a wrong turn along the way.
I have a feeling that profit before humanity was probably our biggest blunder, and I fear that we'll all pay for that in poor health, increasing cost of living, and unaffordable healthcare, as our home, mother earth, makes her corrections to relieve herself of toxins in the form of chemicals and pharmaceuticals that our lifestyles so heavily rely on.
So in this knowledge, how do we stay in the present and live life fully?
For me it's about realising that I am experiencing grief. The loss of something that was rich and real and healthy from the past, and the life of health and joy I imagined for the future.
Grief asks us to accept the things we cannot change and change the things we can.
Making life real in the now for me is about getting clear on my priorities around the things that I love and the things that matter to me, and putting my energy into those.
Establishing and nurturing a healthy organic garden, paying attention to soil restoration, listening to the plants communicate their needs, observing nature and learning to work with her.
Additionally I'm minimising waste of any description, especially anything that will go into the landfills. All organic matter is composted on my small urban site.
My work with Psychotherapy and Energy Psychology supports those who are learning to find joy in the now. Those who are still struggling with unmet needs and old stories that they are unable to release. Those who are still learning to grieve, let go, and move into the now.
These things bring me joy in the present moment, in the "now" moment.
366 days Towards Self-Mastery
When I considered my New Year's intentions for 2020 I had just one: To allow my heart to love what it loved...and let it lead me. (If not now, then when?)
I've spent months working on integrating my life. To live life more fully with my home life, my interests, my work, my responsibilities, all coming together, all connected. I want to give each the attention that they desire and need, and still have time and energy for the others. That means living and working from the heart. As I was clearing out my bookshelf over the Christmas break I discovered Simple Abundance. I set it aside to explore it on New Year's Day as I lazed through another delicious day of nothingness. Sarah, the author, says this book is about living in grace. Living in grace I realised, is about Self-Mastery.
My thirst for understanding the human condition has driven me all my life, and hand-in-hand with self-mastery it has been a life-long goal. And seeing as I love to write, that living in grace is about self-mastery, and I love a bit of a challenge, then if I am truly going to let my heart lead, I really don't have any other choice. So scary as it feels, I'm starting out on a daily mission of leaning into the suggestions of this daybook and making a daily post to keep me accountable. If not now, then when?
I'm Josie. You can find out a little more about me here.
Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy: by Sarah Ban Breathnach
This book is written for the Australian and NZ market because it refers to seasonal changes. It's available on Amazon here if you'd like to follow along.