NANCY G. SHAPIRO

FINDING CALM IN THE MIDST OF CHANGE

Now in the Unknown

April 29, 2018

 

“Perhaps God made the world round so we would not see too far ahead."

- Isak Dinesen -

 

It is 5:50 am. My sleeping husband, the dogs snoring in their beds outside, and the silhouettes of the mesquite trees are bathed in a glimmering silver light of the full moon. Roosters are crowing in the distance, and I am wide awake, remembering an image of a clock where the word NOW replaces the numerals.

 

I am [surprisingly] more present with each moment than ever before as we prepare to hand over our home of eight years to its new owner. Our personal possessions are in a pile of boxes in the garage, a radical "lightening of our load" from what once filled the house. Except for a five-month sabbatical, much of it taking place on the road as we explore the Northwest in our truck and a travel trailer called Imagine, our anwer to "What are you doing?" is "We don't know." 

 

A Chinese perspective of the future is that the future is invisible behind us, and therefore we cannot possibly know what it brings. The past is in front of us, visible and full of insight if we care to look. Inhabiting the present for only an instant, we walk backwards into the future, blindly moving step by backward step into the unknown, small offerings of now placed fleetingly before us in the present before moving on to the library of the past.

 

An eloquent friend said recently it is "the purity of the unknown" which calls to him. I am holding that phrase in my heart and my mind, alive to the purity of each moment. Now.

 

 

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Calming Practice: Full Moon Meditation

 

Sit outside at night during a full moon.

Breathe in and open to the silvery light, then exhale into the unknown.

Pay attention to what you notice in the heightened shadows,

what distracts you from that noticing.

Breathe in. Breathe out. Be the noticing. 

 

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