I sometimes try to look around with what I call
“new eyes” that may never have seen what I’m looking at,
“new eyes” that are surprised and filled with a sense of wonder and appreciation,
freshly “seeing” the beauty and wonder that I’m so “used to”
So often, I don’t even notice the wonder of what I see…
to see life with
So…the way I “see” it,
this idea is only as good as its “applied use”
using that idea of looking at life with “new eyes”
“looking around me with new eyes”
in my everyday life
So….here I go…
actually what I consider a very special example
looking at what might be considered….
ordinary, everyday running water
The past few days I’ve been filled with a sense of wonder
about the “miracle” of running water
ordinary, everyday running water,
something I seldom notice or think about,
something I usually just take for granted
and certainly don’t typically “appreciate”
Sometimes I find it easier to access “new eyes”
in this case, seeing running water,
by using my imagination
So…accessing those “new eyes”
by imagining visiting from somewhere far away….
somewhere people don’t have access to what I have might have access to…
perhaps, visiting our homes from a remote, dry area
an imaginary visit
opening up and focusing those “new eyes”
In my mind, I actually added onto that guided imagination….and explained a few aspects of the water uses in our own home….it’s kind of interesting to try to explain the dynamics of an automatic ice cube maker, chilled water dispenser in/on the refrigerator door, choices of water temperature in the clothes washer, automatic temperature and pressure controls in the shower and automatic outdoor landscape watering…not to mention the 8 hydro-jets in the bathtub.
This isn’t to induce a sense of “guilt,”
but rather to encourage a sense of wonder and appreciation
to realize how fortunate we are
to stop, notice, “take in” and appreciate what we have
so much of it…we don’t even notice
to shift into a sense of appreciation and gratefulness
Last evening, I decided to try to draw a “mind map”
trying to think of various water uses in our own home
Water coming from the mountains, to the city, to our home…
it actually took some thinking and concentration…
I hardly notice what we have in our own home
and I certainly seldom feel much appreciation for it
Isn’t it amazing what we have access to?
Sometimes, I continue by imagining a possible conversation
between two “aspects” of myself
that aspect of myself that is just “used to” what I have….and not really very appreciative
and that more “awakened” aspect of myself,
the one who is able to see the sense of wonder
and is filled with appreciation and gratitude
That sense of “me” who is able to see
there’s a little journey I take…
a journey of learning to become more aware,
learning to access and develop that sense of deep appreciation and wonder
learning to see aspects of my own life…
water, air, a functioning body, a usable mind,
family, friends, people, relationships,
animals, earth, nature, space, science, technology
homes, health, jobs, food, communities,
connections, warmth, love, kindness…
learning to shift my perspective and practicing seeing all of those
….with “new eyes”…
looking at life with “new eyes”
A little extra note of thanks to the warm and supportive people and “teacher” in a wonderful class that I’m taking…encouraging us to develop living with a sense of “taking in the good”…that sense of pausing, noticing, taking in and appreciating… perhaps a first step might be “seeing life with new eyes”…. 😀
ps…I created this post simply to help with improving awareness of the wonders in one’s everyday life.
After writing and reflecting on this post, however, I realize that I do want to find and support organizations that help other people on earth have access to that basic human necessity… access to clean water.
After “touring” my home, my perspective shifted, particularly with the automatic ice maker and bathtub jets. Certainly I am developing more and deeper appreciation for what I have…but I also can see what others, people just like myself, don’t have…and so I’m expanding the post to include links to organizations, in case people want to see what is “happening” around the world to support access to clean water. If any readers know of reputable, grass roots organizations that are working to develop access to clean water in rural areas of underdeveloped countries, might you be willing to leave links in the comments section of this post? I’ll add links to websites/organizations that are working to support that type of access to this post. As I wrote, “guilt” is not helpful, but I think it’s important to be looking out for and supporting each other within our larger human family…. to offer support to others who are less fortunate than we might be…. so that they can have access to healthy water supplies….as in the “common humanity” phrase….”just like myself, this person wishes for easier access to clean, drinkable water….”…what affects one, affects us all….common humanity.
A few links for developing awareness of world water needs
Kiva.org http://www.kiva.org/ SanFrancisco based company that makes microloans to people in need. Three different people have recommended this group in the comments area of this post. 98.94% repay rate by borrowers
Wells Bring Hope, saving lives with safe water in South Africa http://www.wellsbringhope.org/
Micro loans to women in Africa for building wells http://www.wellsbringhope.org/micro-loans
Women of the Wells, building wells in impoverished countries http://womenofthewells.org/what.htm#mission
Empowering Women Through Water http://thewaterproject.org/water-womens-empowerment.php
World Water.org http://www.theworldwater.org/about_water.php
Global Water.org http://www.globalwater.org/
Water for Life, school to school support http://www.h2oforlifeschools.org/ http://www.h2oforlifeschools.org/index.php/the-water-crisis/learn-about-the-issue
Water for the Ages http://waterfortheages.org/international-water-organizations/
The Water Project http://thewaterproject.org/
The World Bank, water in Nepal http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/EXTABOUTUS/IDA/0,,contentMDK:22332079~menuPK:4754051~pagePK:51236175~piPK:437394~theSitePK:73154,00.html
Wow…this is having eyes of the newborn…everything is new! My “self” is curious…and along with the seeing, I feel and touch and hear and smell anew. Remember Snoopy (Charles Shultz) jumping for joy…at the simple and profound! I remember “my child” jumping for joy, as well. In fact, i think I did yesterday 🙂
Oh my…okay everybody…I think that comment might be from Bev….one of the friendly, positive people I’ve met at the “Taking in the Good” class…she’s going to be putting some of her own magical writing onto her own new blog..a blog that’s almost ready to go. Everybody, I’d like to introduce you to a remarkable woman named Bev….just retiring from her own paid work/business…about 12-15 years after many people retire…in order to have time to pursue her many other passions…I won’t say your age Bev…but she is a true “elder,” her own words about her new role in letting go of her own business and shifting into the role of…a wise elder…an inspiration to many! (just take a look at her comment to notice her sense of youth, magic, liveliness and wisdom! )
And, thanks Bev, that’s a good reminder…new eyes, new ears, new taste, new touch, new smells…and new…well… new sense of wonder.
this is a wonderful exercise and I love how you walk us through it. Ooh, looking forward to meeting Bev already, after that wonderful introduction by you. If someone was to do careful investigation and we chose a place or organization to support as a group here on the blog, i would be willing to chip in. I’m a bit jaded about charitable organizations so i wouldn’t be the person to ask about it.
Joss, I’m happy that you joined me in the walk… I never expected to end this post with realizing that I need to learn more about helping others obtain potable water too, but I guess that’s the natural progression outward, from “me” to family, to community to the world…the wonders of learning from one’s own blog posts! (my little walk and explaining the ice maker and bathtub jets “did me in” ) I’m also careful about charitable organizations…I added links for information, but will see if I can find some “known” local grassroots organizations. And, Bev is a lovely person….people will really enjoy her!
Kathy, I just googled to find out what percentage of the world has clean, drinking water and it’s 89%. Would be so wonderful if the remaining 11% also have water! http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/06/clean-water_n_1323175.html
We are indeed blessed to have such easy and often indulgent access to clean water. Thanks for writing this post.
Marie, thank you for that data… at first I thought, “well, 11% doesn’t sound like to much…” but then I thought “what’s 11% of 7 billion people on earth?”…this doesn’t seem like it could be correct, but that’s approximately 700,000,000 people without clean drinking water…is that right?….that’s a huge number. But, there have been very positive improvements in the past 20 years.
And aren’t we so blessed in so many ways….so very very blessed.
One organization for which I would encourage support is kiva.org. Go there to see if there are women out there who depend on water to support their business. Wonderful reflection!
thank you, Georgette…I hadn’t expected my “little” post to lead to me “seeing” the huge gaps in access to clean water with “new eyes”….ah, how one’s own eyes/mind can be opened by one’s own posts.Thank you for the heads up about Kiva….I went their site and see that they have a remarkable number of projects available for micro loans…
I just found another microloan site, by a group of women in LosAngeles. They offer microloans for women in Africa to drill wells and to therefore have more of their time available for using in a productive manner. http://www.wellsbringhope.org/micro-loans
I support Kiva and have the banner in my blog. It’s a worthy cause.
Good for you … I get it too. Kiva is one of my favorites… 🙂
Thanks, I’ll add Kiva to the list…
I love watching babies as they look around and take in the world — they are always filled with the wonder that comes with newly discovered everything!!
Watching a baby’s face is one of my favorite ways of reconnecting with a sense of wonder…or being with little kids!
Hey great stuff, thank you for sharing this useful information and I will let know my friends as well.