The inspiration for these exercises came from two unlikely sources. The first are the beautiful books from Thomas Merton and his editors A Book of Hours, Seeds of Contemplation, and New Seeds of Contemplation. The second is the red Fieldbook by Peter Senge to his best selling business book The Fifth Discipline. While this part of the book bears little resemblance to these great books, they did serve as inspiration.
Please take some time and try them out! If you like, let me know how it goes. Best of luck. Mark
Acts of Contemplation, Freedom for a Glad Heart
Monday – Walking In Quiet Stillness
Today – The Blue Skies Shine
Wednesday – Naturetime
Thursday – Mindtime
Friday - The Universe in Time
The Blue Skies Shine
Is there anything more beautiful or peaceful than the clear blue skies? The blue skies offer hope of a brand new day of opportunity. The energy in this kind of day allows quiet thoughts and contemplation.
Acts of Contemplation
Act 1 – Set up a recording of the song “Blue Skies” (my favorite is Willie Nelson) either with a headphone system or inside on a sound system. Or if you are alone, sing the song yourself out loud. As you listen, look up into the clear blue sky (out a window if you are inside).
Empty your mind and put aside any issues of the day. Let your mind fill with peacefulness and grace. Enjoy the fresh air. Appreciate the beauty and majesty of this perfect day. Let the song run until it is done. Repeat the song if you like.
As the day progresses let your mind return to this special feeling. Write down anything you feel is important in a journal.
Act 2 – Repeat Act 1 with “Somewhere over the Rainbow”
Act 3 – Repeat Act 1 with your favorite song.
Act 4 - Repeat the previous acts without any musical accompaniment, only you and the day, basking in its magnificence.
Act 5 – Review any notes or memories of Acts 1-4. Make this into a routine act of outdoor contemplation.