Spending a week backpacking in the mountains of Colorado with four good friends is an exercise in being present: captivated by beauty, disciplined by the power of the mountain, focused on each step along the path. The rain and hail sent us into our tents for three hours one day and four the next.
Rain was my Yogi, saying, “Sit, wait, be. There is no next. There is only now. Be. Now.”
Just to sit is actually a gift. Forced quiet slowly becomes right – soul washed by the tapping of rain upon my tent; elemental rest. I am amazed that I am not bored; not stir crazy, even after hours inside such a small space. Instead, my heart is at peace.
Birds greet each slice of sun, then quiet with the return of the rain, alternating cool and warm. Sensations follow one another across my field of consciousness. I let them come and go. Sometimes they mix with my thoughts and stir up memories or fanciful images, but mostly they just are. And, for now, so am I. No choice, really. And that is good, for guilt has no entrée. There is nothing else to do. It is what it is. As am I. Enough. Enough.
And slowly I lean back against your shoulder, and feel the rise and fall of your chest; your kiss upon my head. This is a time of soul-resting quiet. It is, indeed, a gift.
Listen in, if you like: