For many years during the first day of our Earth Literacy program participants would be invited to choose a natural subject outdoors and speak in its name as we processed around La Vista. The purpose was to deepen our appreciation for the wonderful interiority or subjectivity inherent in every being. It was a lovely experience, and we came away feeling more in communion with life around us, richer for this awakening. When it was my turn I usually chose clouds for my subject since I have always been charmed by their beauty as well as their silent lesson on differentiation. I loved speaking “for” them!
Some years ago I found a passage about the sky in Gerald May’s book The Wisdom of Wilderness that drew me further into interiority. Wanting this passage to sink deeply into my consciousness I adapted his words, creating a meditation for myself. I hope it speaks to you, too.
Sooner or later, I suspect,
the sky could teach us everything.
It is willing for that.
It waits to be noticed, to be looked into.
The apostle Paul said that we live
and move and have our being in God.
If that’s true, one might ask,
how come God seems so far away?
Maybe it’s something like the sky.
The sky often seems distant,
but it’s always embracing us;
it always has and always will.
It not only holds us; it flows through us.
We breathe it.
It’s in our blood, in every cell.
And always we are soaring through
its endless reaches.
I can almost feel the sky
wanting to be appreciated,
loving to be wondered at.
It forms thousands of events to get our attention.
It manifests as a cloud right around us,
and we day, “It’s foggy.”
It showers us, and we say, “It’s raining.”
And it storms.
Following this meditation, it is time to participate in skying! I am grateful to John Constable for this word describing the practice of lying on your back on the ground and gazing skyward to watch the ever-changing clouds. Meditation plus this kind of embodiment can become a spiritual practice freely offered and gratefully received any day with a cloud-filled sky!