Mar 032015
 

Dear Readers,

This is the first time that I write down an exercise with the purpose of helping other people. So, I apologize, in advance, if you find it sloppy and so on. However, it is an exercise that I made a week and a bit ago that helped me imagine and feel things. To make this work, all you need to do is to let yourself go. Here it goes.

If you are a woman, you are wearing a white dress, knee length. If you are a man, you are wearing a pair of white shorts and a white shirt. You both are not wearing anything underneath these clothes. You are wearing your favorite pair of shoes.

You find yourself at the foot of a hill. You look towards the crest of the hill, but can’t see what is up there. You see some paved stairs carved into the slope of the hill. Head towards these stairs.The stairs are narrow and there is no railing to support you. Start climbing the stairs. Do not look behind. Do not turn your head to the left or to the right. Do not count the number of stairs left. While going up the stairs, whenever you wish to, take a short break. Breathe in deeply. Take a seat on one of the stairs and take your shoes off. Do not get your sight distracted by anything else but the stairs and your shoes, which you leave behind. Now feel the warmth of the pavement with your bare feet. You feel your feet practically roasting. Do not feel the need to go back to your shoes and put them back on. Do not get off the stairs onto the grass near them. Instead continue climbing the stairs while your feet are burning. Keep your pace, do not climb the stairs faster to shorten the time.

You reach the top of the stairs. Do not rush to walk onto the grass. Take another deep breath. Gaze into the horizon. Take a deeper look at your surroundings. You notice a tree with thick branches in the middle of the crest. Again, do not rush to head towards the tree to escape the sun’s heat. Make a step forward and step onto the grass. Feel the coolness of the grass on your feet. Hover your right foot over the grass. Do the same with your left one. Feel the tips of the grass tickling your feet. Stop and take another deep breath. Head towards the tree. Once again, do not get distracted by your surroundings. Stop when you find yourself about 10m away from the tree. Take a closer look at the trunk of the tree and its branches and leaves. Do not let the thought of the tree being beautiful or even much older than you cross your mind. You notice the tree’s shadow taking shape over the grass. You also notice your own shadow. Continue looking at the shadows only. Lift your right arm to reach the tree’s branches, in the shadow. Your real hand does not actually reach the branches, but your shadow hand manages to “touch” the outside twigs. A breeze of air starts rocking the branches. The shadows get closer. Do not feel scared and do not take your hand away. Let it get buried between the shadow branches.

After a moment, put your right hand down. Take another deep breath. Continue walking towards the tree and take a seat on the grass beneath the tree. Lay over the grass. Turn your head to your right. That’s the way you came from. You notice a small village with white houses stretching at the foot of the hill. You hear a faint buzz coming from that side of the hill. Do not let your mind be trapped with your daily chores, routine, and other mundane things, now that you have a glimpse of humanity.

Turn your head to the left. Look at the hills and valleys that mingle into the faraway, one after another, after another…do not count them. Follow the trace of their shape with your eye…a continuous curved line. When you finish following this line, turn your head up. Look at the rays of the sun shining among the branches of the tree. The wind continues to blow gently between the leaves. Lift both your arms and pick two leaves that you like with your fingers. Do not lose sight of these two leaves. Move your arms and fingers along with the leaves, as the wind blows.

Meanwhile, a bug crawls on your leg. Do not get distracted from the leaves and do not feel disgust. Do not turn your head away to look at the bug and see what kind it is. Feel its tiny feet on your skin and let it crawl on your leg until it crosses it and goes back into the grass.

All of a sudden, you feel the air cooling, the wind blowing harder, the tree’s branches begin to shiver. Take a look to your right again. Notice that black clouds are storming around and gathering into the faraway. Hear the thunder’s howling. Take notice of the light surrounding you fading away. It’s getting darker and the storm is approaching. Do not panic. Do not be tempted to run away in fear and hide in a safe place. Continue laying on the grass and wait for whatever it might come. The tree is your only shelter. The air is getting cooler and cooler. Feel its breeze on your skin. Allow the wind to cover a quarter of you with leaves, dust and twigs. Do not forget that your arms are still dancing with the tree’s leaves, now in a more alert rhythm.

A big rain droplet falls on your right cheek. More of them start falling on your legs, clothes, arms, face and hair. Put your arms down. Continue looking up. See the sky between the branches. See the dark clouds right above you. See the drops of rain fall. Ignore everything else around you, except for these droplets. Forget about the coordinates of time and space. Focus only on these drops. See how these round, clear drops of water fall slowly from the clouds. See how some drops smash into the branches and leaves and how they lose their shape, how they never make it to the ground. Observe how many other more slip and fall between the leaves. Look at their shape. Freeze time and space. Look at the thousands of drops, now frozen. See the small or big spheres of water, pick a few of them and look right through the matter they are made of.

Unfreeze time and space. Let the droplets fall down on you. More and more of them are coming. Close your eyes. Do nothing else but feel. Feel the water washing you. Feel your body being buried in the ground. Feel the grass. Feel how your clothes are soaking wet. Feel the leaves imprinted on your skin. Feel the dust turn muddy. Do not think of the white clothes getting dirty. Let them. Do nothing but feel. Feel the smell of the rain. Mingle with nature. Allow yourself to be a part of it.

Your eyes are still closed. Once you feel the fall of these drops slow down, open your eyes. Look at the clear sky at your right and left. Look up as the tree’s branches are being revived. Look at the grass now freshened up. Look into the horizon. Hear it breathe in, breathe out. Do the same as well. Enjoy the peace.

Get up and stretch. Look towards the place you laid on. Notice the shape of your body imprinted in the grass. Head back towards the stairs. While going down the stairs, decide whether getting your shoes back is important or not. At the foot of the hill take a last look at the crest. Breathe in and breathe out deeply one more time.

And now, my friends, it is very much up to you what kind of BS you are willing to get back with you and carry it /them inside your mind every day.

One tree hill, exercise the power of your mind, imagination and feelings

Random Tree

With love,
Cătălina.

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