A Couple of Lessons from the Ocean

At the risk of generating another overused ocean metaphor…I am going to do just that.  Some have an affinity for mountains or lakes, but my heart swims in the sea.  At White Horse Beach just south of Plymouth this weekend, we had incredible sunshine, warmth, and company.  I also had plenty of time to learn.

White Horse Beach is no Nantucket or Bora Bora, but to those of us who grew up on its shores, it’s paradise–even with its rocks, seagulls, and seaweed.  The people of White Horse have developed strong soles over the years.  However, there is no better place to be at low tide, which stretches out maybe a hundred yards or more.

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Lesson 1: Footsteps in the Sand

The area where most of the home owners live is busy in June and July, and the sand reveals the evidence.  Feet big and small, birds of all sizes, and dogs each take a turn imprinting on the grain.  At low tide, the sand becomes covered in this plantar language of sorts.  For some reason, this simple revelation did not occur to me until yesterday when I was taking a stroll towards the point.  How wild, it seemed to me, that every day dozens of people make their mark and at the end of the day, the tide washes away every trace.

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Each day we make footsteps in the sand.  We rush around and work and find ourselves with less time and less time, and then with the passing of a day, we get a clean slate.  Imagine if every day the remains of the commotion on the beach remained from the day before.  The build up would be intolerable.  Luckily, the Earth knows better.  So should we.  Approach each day, each moment, as a new opportunity to create what we want for ourselves.

We are never given a dream without the power to make it come true. -Robert Bach

Lesson 2: Meditate

We are already given a steady source which we can meditate on.  The yogis and others say the breath is our constant because as long as we are living, it remains with us.  Well, the ocean told me that it will always be there, too.  If you need a change of pace, or following your breath does not resonate with you, try meditating to the sound of the ocean.  Some waves are larger than others, and some make more sound.  Observe them quietly without judgment, and enter stillness.

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