Stop what you are doing right now: Why we should savour life’s special moments
Art and nature can give us a secret inner glow because we have flown above the ordinary
Alice Taylor: We all have moments that matter when life lights up but we must to be there to enjoy them!
The seeds of inspiration to write this book germinated one morning at dawn on a sunlit beach when I had an experience that woke me up to the realisation that through lack of awareness I could miss out on beautiful experiences.
An oil spill had been reported out at sea and the following morning at dawn I had gone to check for oiled birds on our nearest beach. When I arrived the sun was blazing up over the horizon turning the sea into a shimmer of gold. It was a breathtaking scene that could light up your whole being. But for some reason that I cannot now remember my mind was on other things and I did not take time to absorb the magic of that precious moment. Afterwards I regretted my lack of awareness.
Early Spring morning,
Nobody on the beach.
I came searching
For oiled birds
And found only
On leaping waves,
A sunlit world
Alive with sea music.
It was a picture
To be painted
When the scene was fresh;
All the magic
That was then.
That morning I allowed an amazing moment to pass me by unsavoured and unappreciated. Later I woke up to the realisation of what had happened. I became aware that deep within each one of us is a vein of sacred stillness holding the seeds of our awareness. On special occasions a ray of light beams into this vein and these seeds spring to life, igniting dormant threads of our being. Our inner world lights up and dances in tune with all that surrounds us. We glory in the wonder of being alive. Such moments are golden. Rare orchids scattered along the woodland of our lives.
And it is for such moments that we scale mountain tops, penetrate the depths, pit ourselves against the might of man and nature. Strive to be raised up so that for one breathtaking moment we dance on a higher plane. Then we are in total harmony with ourselves and with life. That morning on the beach I had such a moment gifted to me but had not appreciated the treasure on offer.
When those golden moments are savoured we live in the afterglow of the experience. We walk on enriched by a secret inner glow because we have flown above and beyond the ordinary. We have danced with life and with our inner being. We are rejuvenated.
Sometimes nature can lay such golden moments out in front of us on a palette of breathtaking beauty as had happened to me that morning. It can happen unexpectedly, out of the blue and for one brief moment our world is transformed.
On a remote mountainy road you may drive slowly around a curving bend. And there it is. An unbelievably beautiful hidden valley. Nature holds the key to open our windows into wonder. But we must be aware and open to such experiences.
Amazing moments can also be gifted to us by our fellow humans. This happens when genius touches us. We hear it in a beautiful piece of music. For a breathtaking moment you and the music maker dance together. We see it in a beautiful ballet when the ballerina becomes a bird in flight. We read it in a soul-stirring poem. Words written long ago allow us to see the world through the eyes of the poet. We see it in an exquisite painting. On the canvas you and the artist are one. These moments form a link across the decades. The artist may be dead for centuries but creativity is an invisible bridge across time.
When we are gifted with these rare moments a ray of radiance encompasses us. It lifts us up and we experience an interlude that infuses us with delight and a positive belief in the greatness of our fellow human beings. We wish that these moments could last forever. But if we mindfully absorb them as they happen we can encapsulate these moments into the depths of our subconscious and they mould themselves into the fabric of our being and carry us over the stumbling blocks that may be up ahead.
A horse trainer friend who has seen many fallings and risings in his racing career says about days when he has a winner “I don’t go to bed at all that night”. He believes in taking time to absorb the exultation. To lace the magic moment into the fabric of his psyche to help carry him over the crash landings that may be up ahead.
We may not all walk in the winner’s enclosure or stand on the podiums of achievement or raise the cup of victory but we do all have beautiful moments. Special moments that can set our inner beings aglow and wake us up to the beauty that surrounds us. But we must be there in them. To mindfully absorb and savour them. Otherwise the golden moment may pass us by. And afterwards we will never be able to recapture the beauty that was then.
Life brings many challenges but we are also gifted with special moments when life lights up. These moments enrich our lives but can so easily be lost if we are too busy looking in another direction. They can then drift by unappreciated and unnoticed. And afterwards we can never again recapture them. So it is good to be mindful of our golden moments. To be aware, to observe, and savour them. And absorb the joy of now. We all have moments that matter when life lights up but we must to be there to enjoy them! That is what my new book is all about.
Alice Taylor’s 25th book, And Life Lights Up, Moments that Matter, is published by O’Brien Press