Driving over to Napa the other day, I witnessed the most amazing beauty. Breathtaking and compelling, low hanging clouds draped themselves over the mountain ridges. Near tears, it was obvious to me, obvious, the fog-laden peaks were caressed equally whether they had been untouched by the recent fires retaining stalwart golden-leaved trees or revealed burn scars, treeless, grassless and naked. It was as if these supple minute water droplet-filled boggy floating bulbs served equally as interfaces between earth and heaven. Mother nature – God, if you will – cared not what had come before it seemed, instead insisting on providing the same advantage for each peak rising up from the earth and I knew, not just that all would be well, but all IS well.
I am inclined to know in difficult times such as these that vibrant living forces greater than ourselves protect all life, living or seemingly dead, so as to continue on its evolutionary path. What else could happen, after all? The devastation from natural and manmade disasters cannot stop what has come before and what will go on long after. Not possible, regardless of your belief system, it cares not what we misunderstand; IT continues all the same.
Recently, some friends sent me a beautiful card showing hands cupped with a single pristine lotus flower tenderly held in the center. In the inside card was a story, how they had been to Sedona months ago, had been in the Chapel of the Holy Cross and in the gift shop had selected a medal from the Ave Maria bin, Mary’s picture on one side, the prayer for maternal protection on the other. “Eric had thought of you,” Carrie wrote. The narrative continued with, after getting home, they promptly forgot to mail it, had misplaced it, or both. She was embarrassed. No matter, the coin surfaced now, at the right time–when it was needed most did it present itself to her to send my way.
I am additionally inclined to know that comfort arrives when it is required, in surprising and miraculous ways. Had my friend sent it five months ago when they first found the medal, I know I would have been touched, warmed by the thought and actuality of their gift and what it represents. But now, now it has added power, an impact so great, greater even than the original thought which was no small thing to begin with. Instead, receiving it now I feel the power of Love magnified, like an interface between earth and heaven. For it has arrived at just the right time, when it was supposed to.
Life goes on and on, regardless of our temporary perception of tragedy. It insists on it. It insists on it in whatever state we think we see life in, dormant or burnt, barren or lush with growth. I am grateful for all things living and just as much for what seems dead, having gone to another realm or another form, protected by a power greater than any of us can even fathom. The giver of life, whatever it be named, remains, is revered by man, beast, bud and tree. Life is brave, remarkable even through exhaustion and smoke whether disintegrating from fire or rising from its ash. Life continues. It all continues, tentatively moving forward even when uncertain and unsure, reluctant yet insisting on its progress. It can do no other, whether weeping or joyful. Life moves. It breathes me, animating all that is, throbbing, pulsating with being.