Awakening to Beauty

October 26th, 2009

I know a cure for sadness:  let your hands touch something that makes your eyes smile.  I bet there are a hundred objects close by that can do that.  Look at beauty’s gift to us – her power is so great she enlivens the earth, the sky, our soul.           ~Mira (Poet from India, 1498-1550)

Today I was reminded of the delight and surprise I experience when nature reveals her beauty.  Surprise, because she shows up at unexpected times and places in a myriad of disguises.  Hiking up the steep dirt trail that I walk almost every day with my black Labrador retriever I was taken aback by sparkling light that seemed to dance in the air, reflections from a thicket of branches dusted in a frosty snow.  It was as if the whole hillside had been sprinkled with glitter – and I was grateful that I actually noticed instead of being distracted by the world inside my head.  In The Color Purple, Alice Walker describes awakening to beauty in the following dialogue between Shug and Celie:

“I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don’t notice it.”

“What do it do when it pissed off?”  Celie asks.

“Oh, it make something else.  People think pleasing God is all God care about.  But any fool living in the world can see it always trying to please us back.”

“Yeah?”  I say.

“Yeah,” she say.  “It always making little surprises and springing them on us when us least expect.”

Beauty speaks the language of the soul disregarding the limitations of our thoughts, our schedules, or our particular circumstance in life.  I find I need beauty near by, especially in my home as a reminder to enter into this soul dialogue.  Sometimes it can feel like a luxury to purchase a piece of art but I’m beginning to believe it’s a necessity of the heart, just as having a furnace is necessary to keep my body warm during the chill of winter.  A painting on the wall with vivid colors, a vase of flowers from a neighbor’s garden, or listening to Mozart being played on the piano warms a place deep within my being.  And sometimes when I look our my window I resonate with Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s words:  Earth is crammed with heaven and every common bush afire with God, or in my case, every bush aglitter with God.

No Responses to “Awakening to Beauty”

  1. There are currently no comments on this entry, want to be the first? Use the form on the right.

You must be logged in to post a comment.