What you see depends on who you are
As I was searching the web for license free pictures of Autumn to create my blog graphics for this season, this particular picture captured my attention. Although I collected over 20 amazing landscapes with vibrant reds, oranges, and yellows radiating their beauty against a deep blue sky, this picture begged to be chosen. As a spiritual director, I have learned to trust that intuitive knowing that says, this is the one.
What is the appeal of this picture?
This picture doesn’t have the “dazzle” impact of the usual autumn landscapes. What captured my interest was how it drew me in, stirred me to look deeply within myself to question why I found it so compelling. I realized that what attracted me to this picture was unique to who I am and what stirs my soul.
We know that what people see in any given situation is guided by who they are, what’s going on in their lives, and what has meaning to them. An excellent way to gain conscious awareness of yourself and what matters most to you, is to look deeply at what attracts your attention, or notice what is having a strong affect on you. What you see and feel are being guided by something in your life that seeks your awareness.
What is seeking to be noticed in your life?
Look at this picture then reflect on these 5 questions:
- What is the first thing I notice in the picture?
- What feeling does this picture stir in me?
- What, if anything, is pleasing about this picture?
- What, if anything, is unsettling or displeasing about this picture?
- What title would I give this picture?
As you consider your responses to the questions, notice where in your life you are experiencing similar feelings. What do these responses reveal about that situation?
It is surprising what can come into your conscious awareness through this process.
Find universal truths through nature’s design.
As I reflected on this picture, I realized I was drawn to the innate beauty generated through nature’s contrasts. The brilliant yellow leaves of the trees make the aquamarine color of the river pop, and vice versa. The ancient boulders standing in the forefront of the picture is appreciated even more when seen in contrast to the hillside of exposed earth crumbling beneath the trees in the background. And the bubbly white caps of the river happen because the water is flowing against immobile rock formations.
These contrasts resonated with something deep in me that is aware of the value of the contrasts in life – the gifts and the challenges. They form the meaningful interplay that enrich and enhance each experience. This picture raised my awareness of how much that matters to me, and the title named that message.
When seeking insight around an issue we can look to nature to give us a way to see our situation from a different perspective. Sometimes that’s all it takes to get clarity and direction.
The season of Autumn brings emotional stirrings that can help you tune into what seeks your attention. For the process and reflection questions to guide you, read my post, Autumn Magic, in my Wisdom of the Feminine blog.
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Teresa Lampmann completed a certificate program in women’s spirituality in 1998 and two certificate programs in spiritual direction, one in 1997 and recently in 2015. Her book, The ABC Path toward True Wisdom, offers stories, reflections, and personal rituals to engage you in trusting your heart for the truth about what matters most in your life.
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