Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field. I’ll meet you there. Rumi
The morning after last week’s full, super, blue moon dawned beautifully. Clear sky; still, crisp air. Moon hanging in the western sky on its way to meet the horizon. I headed out for a long, solo walk before Zadie Byrd woke.
Returning home, she was awake, curious as to the whereabouts of her human, and ready to go out for ‘her’ morning walk. I was ready for canine company and wanted to watch Moon meet the western horizon. With Zadie harnessed up we headed down the road in that direction at her slow, morning- sniffing pace. A short distance down the road, sniffing needs satisfied and morning ‘business’ complete, she stopped, stiffened her body and looked at me with her ‘I’m done. Let’s go home’ eyes.
Not knowing whether she’s in pain or perhaps sensing danger ahead, when this occurs I generally follow Zadie’s lead. Sometimes though I insist, sternly saying ‘we’re going this way’ or gently pulling her leash, cajoling with treats and a silly running game to test her movement and energy.
This day, catching myself before I began to insist, I paused. I looked at the moon and took a deep breath. What would forcing accomplish given the peace I felt from walking under this stunning moon? Was I willing to pay the price of the deep peace I was feeling to have my way?
I engaged in a different approach. Dropping the leash, I continued walking several steps and invited ‘Zades’ to ‘come’ join me.
At first, she seemed a bit perplexed being beyond the length of the leash from me. Then she came looking somewhat curious. ‘What is my human up to now?’ she was perhaps wondering. As she caught on, supported by tasty rewards and lots of praise, we sauntered to the end of our road, overlooking the vast valley and San Juan mountains and I watched as the horizon at long last greeted the moon, Zadie Byrd happily sniffing nearby. We were both satisfied, and it was time to return home.
Reflecting on the experience later, I was present to the open heartedness of a genuine invitation and how my heart tightens when I insist.
Insisting holds little, if any, difference than demanding and forcing, acts that have no regard for another. They leave no room for choice, and when I engage in that way, leave me feeling heavy and glum. Insisting is an act of mind, not heart; of ego, not spirit; of force, not power.
Inviting, engaging another being in the process and offering choice, is an act of the heart. It reflects an inner power that has no need to force others. Inviting is an act of spirit.
Once again, canine companion Zadie Byrd carries the mantle of wise teacher, offering up opportunities for me to pause, to pivot, to learn, to grow. Inviting me to the field where she lives.
Cindy explores the practical application of mysticism, reflects on life, writes, takes long walks with canine companion Zadie Byrd, and stewards a small property at 8000 feet in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of Southern Colorado. In the midst of the changing environment of a chaotic world, each week Cindy invites Muse to explore how to navigate these uncharted waters and how to live a life aligned with our highest values in her blog at www.cindyreinhardt.com/blog