Sunday, October 30, 2016

30. Catalog of Beauty

I am not against critique, but the world’s need to nick pic everything is a dis-ease. What I crave is holiness. We are so far away from the heart, when only the head leads with only what is wrong. How about the million beauties you walked by today and did not see? Name them. The world needs/ I need your catalog of beauty. What is your catalog of beauty?”
                                                                -Glenis Redmond

Since beginning this series on walking, my friends have sent me articles and quotes about walking and its benefits. I've also stumbled on a few myself, like the one above. 
It feels so relevant to today. So much nick picking, so much judgment. So much emphasis on what is wrong. I was struck by the sentence I put in bold type. My walking habit has helped me focus on “the million beauties” I walk by. But now months into this habit and nearly one month of writing about it, I have figured out that I pay attention to the beauty around me regardless of if I am walking or not.
This heightened sense of attention may be one of the best byproducts of walking as meditation. The built-in slowed pace of walking makes paying attention easier than say noticing from the driver's seat of a car, but it's a practice. The more I pay attention, the more I see. 
Today's catalog of beauty:
  • The lyrics of the hymns we sang at church that spoke of hospitality and inclusion. Especially these words from Community of Christ Sings #274:

    Oh, may our hearts and minds be opened, fling the church doors open wide. May there be room enough for everyone inside. For in God there is a welcome, in God we all belong. May that welcome be our song.”

  • Friendship shared and expanded over hamburgers and ice cream after church.

  • Attending a symphony performance with my daughter. In costume.

  • When she rested her sleepy, sweaty head on my shoulder during the performance.

  • Driving home, taking in the beauty of the enormous homes on Lindell Avenue. Their chrysanthemums were vibrant and eye-catching. 
  • Cadence: “It's just nice looking at all these big houses.” Appreciation for things we do not have and not feeling a need to get them or feel bad for not having them.

  • Costume off, feet free of hours of wearing high-heeled boots. Lounging in cozy pajamas under an antique quilt, sipping tea, texting a fellow writer, and working on this post.