In this week’s column, Cynthia Breadner reflects on human words and wonderings about nature
On Earth Day, I was watching a video of beautiful pictures backed by beautiful piano music. These videos are looped and feel endless, playing for hours; a capturing of beauty that I can just sit and watch. Not thinking and not feeling, simply watching. A photographer has captured beauty, flowers, birds and landscape and it is mesmerizing. Meditation moments. Mother Earth has been captured, a snapshot of time, because as we all know what is being watched no longer exists.
Birds and bees seem to be the theme, going about their day, simply living, not knowing or caring that the photographer is recording their every move. They are not performers on a stage putting on a show, they are players in their own living, following instinct while the divine driver encourages. It makes me wonder if they mind being observed. Is there a great photographer watching us and recording our moves as we go about our day? I wonder if our viewer is thinking how beautiful we are, or wondrous, or miraculous.
As I watch this video, I know there is likely some payment from the channel to the creator and yet the subjects receive no royalties. They have neither given permission, signed a waiver, nor do they benefit from their performance. Like the Dione Quints, they are a pawn in our game, little control over the watchers of their lives. I am guilty of this as well. I take nature photos all the time and think little of asking permission or paying royalties.
In this video there was one particular bird that sparked this pen to paper (yes, I write the old-fashioned way). It was a golden yellow bird, with green mixed in and a red face and head. Flitting about and looking right at the camera, seeming to challenge me to notice them and heed their message. The beak was open and while the piano played, the bird song was muted. I wondered what this little messenger was telling me. Was it talking to me or to other birds? Was it saying to another, “you go girl, I am so proud of you!” or was it consoling, “I am so sorry for your loss!” Was it angry and yelling, “get out you cheating dawg!” and then I remembered these are my words and wonderings not the bird’s! They represent my life not the bird’s life. How often we put words in the mouth of others.
Ancient text tells us that the rocks and stones themselves can sing. We know birds can. Trees make noise when one is quiet enough to listen. There is other text that advises us not to worry – it says look at the lilies and how they grow. They neither toil nor spin, they simply are who they are. Mother Nature, in all her glory giving us life through death and seasons. Each spring we see new growth, bloom and life where death once was not so long ago. When a tulip, daffodil, or crocus returns does it cross your mind to mourn the death of last year’s bloom? It is in our human suffering we remember such things.
Today, on Earth Day, or whenever you read these words, take time to wonder how you pay the royalties of the past ephemerality of your life. Think of it like the bloom of a flower, while we are sad death has occurred there is so much to be grateful for in the bloom on the new. As one life leaves us, another takes its place, hungry to live to the fullest and with purpose and meaning. The bloom of the crocus past is a picture captured by the camera of our heart, asking not for payment, but simply to watch with joy. Letting go of our sadness is the point that must be reached to enable us to see the bloom of the next season.
“From a certain point onward, there is no turning back. That is the point that must be reached.” Franz Kafka, Writer (1883-1924).
Cynthia Breadner is a teacher, author, grief specialist and bereavement counsellor; a soul care worker and offers specialized care in spiritually integrated therapies. She works as a LTC chaplain assisting with end-of-life care for client and family. She is the mother part of the #DanCynAdventures duo and practices fitness, health and wellness. She is available remotely by safe and secure video connections, if you have any questions contact her today! CynthiaBreadner@gmail.com breakingstibah.com