Time is like a river. You cannot touch the same water twice, because the flow that has passed will never pass again.
Enjoy every moment of your life.
And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
“Where has the summer gone?” I’ve heard a number of folks ask this question in the last week or so. I’ve said it myself! It seems summer just flies by every year! By March in the North Country, there is already such anticipation for the warmer weather and vibrant green and colorful landscape. We are already planning our flower and vegetable gardens, looking at seed catalogs and nurseries for beautiful things to brighten our yards. We begin to plan our summer vacations, family reunions, and outdoor projects. The end of the whirlwind school year promises a more laconic schedule and the opportunities to enjoy the beautiful outdoors with our friends and families. We plan to pack as much as we can into these 3 short months before the long, gloomy winter ahead. Then, voila! Before we know it, summer is quickly skidding down the slope to an abrupt halt. It seems that the time between each year’s ending of the school year and beginning of another gets shorter and shorter. Where does the summer go?
As we plunge through the end of each school year, putting each milestone and activity behind us, we are already rushing head-long into the future that summer promises. We seem to be always rushing ahead, planning, worrying, and anxious about getting where we want to go. We seem to always be so anxious about getting done what we want to get done, that we forget to just enjoy and rest in each moment as it comes. We seem to be either living in the past or in the future rather than in the NOW, and each year, as we rush forward, time seems to fly by faster and faster.
We cannot go back to the past. What is done is done. What has gone before us is gone. We cannot undo or redo. “Time is like a river. You cannot touch the same water twice, because the flow that has passed will never pass again.” As you sit by a lake, or creek, or river in the last days of summer, ponder the fact that the molecules of water you are observing are always moving onward and outward, and that those that are there in one instant are gone in the next and can never pass by again. All things are impermanent, constantly changing, constantly moving and shifting. We cannot stop time to grasp and hold onto those moments we cherish, and trying to dwell in, and hold on to, those moments of sorrow, anger, hurt, or resentment only causes suffering for ourselves and others.
Even though time ticks away constantly and persistently, and even though we cannot stop time, we can experience a perception of time slowing down for us by practicing being in the moment. Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
Take off your shoes; slowly walk across the grass, and become aware of the cool, moist earth and prickly grass on the bottoms of your feet. Take a few easy slow breaths and let your ‘monkey mind’ relax into that moment.
Notice the tree tops softly swishing in the summer breeze. Take off your hat and let the wind ruffle your hair. Notice how it lifts your hair, and blows it about your ears. Notice the refreshing coolness of the breeze on your skin. Take a few slow easy breaths and let your “monkey mind’ relax into that moment.
Lie down on the grass, gently close your eyes, and feel the warmth of the sun on your face and your body. Take a few easy breaths and let your ‘monkey mind’ relax into that moment.
Listen. Tune in to the sounds around you, the birds singing, children playing nearby, and the sound of the wind in the trees or the neighbor’s lawn mower. Take a few easy breaths and let your ‘monkey mind’ relax into that moment.
Just allow yourself to ‘BE’ in each moment, without worrying where you have been or where you are going. In that very moment, you can almost stop time. Stretch out the rest of your summer ~ BE in each moment!