It was springtime in Yosemite when Anne and I arrived and I took a journey into nature I’d like to briefly share with you and then offer you an effective way to give your life direction.
In the journey you and I take, we are surrounded by a lush green forest of pine and dogwood trees and even some giant Sequoias. The pine trees, some as tall as 150 feet, emit a pungent aroma that perfumes the clean fresh air.
As the pines sway in the gentle warm breeze, they make a soothing sound, like one you’d hear if you pursed your lips to kiss and exhaled softly through them.
The 40 feet tall dogwoods are in bloom covered in white pedaled daisy like flowers, each about the size of your hand. On the ground all around us are flowers in shades of red, gold, and purple that seem to guide us down the pathways we walk.
And moving from flower to flower are small bright blue butterflies. Flying above them are blue jays and other colorful birds and the songs they sing joyously celebrate the day.
As we look up from the Valley, which is 4,000 feet above sea level, we see granite cliffs that rise another 3,000 to 4,000 feet above us. A rise so sharp, we tilt our heads back as far as we can to see the tops.
Above those cliffs are clear blue skies. And white puffy clouds occasionally float by that resemble a huge mass of snow.
The granite cliffs are off-white, with occasional streaks of brown running through them. At the top of those cliffs and at points along their shear faces, we see more pine trees nature has somehow managed to sprinkle there.
And at various points from these shear cliffs, the snow melt sends white water cascading down the cliff faces, in some places falling hundreds of feet before exploding in a thunderous roar onto the rocks below. Some of that water becomes a colorful light mist, rising high into the air.
At certain times, when the sun lights the mist just right, it displays a bright orange rainbow with a spectrum of yellows, greens and blues that reflect off the granite cliff faces.
Most of this snow melt flows into a torrent of crystal clear, ice cold streams that move so fast that to toss a pine cone in is to see that pine cone disappear within a few seconds into the distance.
Swimming in calmer parts of those crystal clear streams are rainbow, brook and golden trout. The golden trout are bright yellow and have colorful blue streaks along their sides.
It is in this setting I’d like to share with you an effective way to give your life direction.
Because I enjoy speaking with others, I often greet people I’ve never met and cordially strike-up a conversation with them. What I find is that when they first arrive, many of them are often stressed, very competitive and self-focused.
But in this magnificent setting, in a day or so they begin to set aside the problems of every day life and as the stunning beauty of nature envelops them, discover within themselves a greater level of humanity.
I believe that many of us, without realizing it allow stress to become a driving factor in our lives. In our race for self-importance, we pursue more possessions, compete with and mistrust others, and become fearful of what we might lose instead of enjoying all that we have.
At first we hesitate to leave our work behind, afraid we’ll miss something significant or that others won’t function well without us. But this is an illusion for life functioned without us before we arrived and it will function without us when we’re gone.
An effective way to give your life direction is to recognize that you, like the rest of us, are seeking spiritual growth. Beyond our basic needs, we want there to be magnificence that will uplift us and show us the way to something more meaningful. It is innate within our souls.
Returning to nature to explore your thoughts will help you find your direction as the world speaks to you in its beauty, and inner peace touches your soul.