Pace. Everyone has a pace, their own unique rhythm that tunes them into what serves them in the best of ways, both in the world, and in their spirit. People's hearts beat at different rates at different times, and each heartbeat is unique to each person. The heart is a physical, emotional center; things flow out, and things flow in.
Maybe that's why I like visiting cities, because of the heart of a city develops over time and has its own unique rhythm. I like tapping into that beat and listening to the rhythm of a city in communion with mine. I also like leaving cities, getting more into the country, listening to that rhythm, where my heart can beat along with the rhythms of nature, of the seasons and of the days.
The secret is in the paradoxes of life, the paradox of the city and the country, the quick pace and the slow pace. The heart is the answer. To be both in the world and not of it. To be both a physical being and a spiritual being. To continue to be rooted and to continue to be in the moment.
For me, this is the practice and the study of slowing down, of recognizing anxious thoughts and getting more into relaxation, of acknowledging jittery-ness and embracing calmness. Being in love with Grace, and being graceful with Love. After all, I only have one heart, so might as well share it and care for it.
"Ai," the traditional Chinese character for love (愛) consists of a heart (middle) inside of "accept," "feel," or "perceive," which shows a graceful emotion. It can also be interpreted as a hand offering ones heart to another hand.
Happy Monday Everyone!
~ photo of Canal du Midi courtesy of Jim Roberts.