Inspired in India.
I just came back from my 2 week trip to India with my family. And while I was there I tried to take in all of India: the sights, the sounds, the smells, the people, the landscape, the progress admist the intense poverty, everything tangible.
And one image stands out in my mind and my heart. As we were driving through this small tribal village in South India, I saw these 2 sweet little boys, sitting beneath a big tree amidst their crop fields. Barefoot, dusty, unshowered, clothed minimally, but nonetheless smiling, laughing, simply enjoying the shade the tree provided and the moist morning air after the night’s rain. They seemed happy, at peace and almost free of burden in that moment. This is not to say that their lives don’t come with significant hardship. And granted these are my perceptions, but it seems to me that they are at peace with what they have. There is a quality of presence that often eludes many of us who get caught up in the things which we seek. Often when we seek, we sometimes see only that which we seek and we forget to see what we already have. When we are fortunate to have as much as many of us do, it’s human to forget to be thankful for the things that are the most simple. How can we cultivate this same presence? How can we soften the aspirations so that we may open to what is here in this moment and find beauty; beauty in the laughter, beauty in the tears, beauty in the totality of our experience and circumstance just as it is?
Those two boys were a sight to be seen, but moreover they had an intangible spirit to be felt from the heart. For me it was a reminder to be present to everything that I have been given and to be thankful for all the things that I sometimes take for granted.