What if recognizing diamonds
was enough to make them yours
and you saw them now everywhere?
On the sunlit ocean; in the moonless sky;
on winter fields and the tips of branches after the rain;
in smiling faces; the brook; the lake; the stream;
the kitchen stove; stairs; puddles, ice, clouds;
anywhere life glimmers and light glints;
kisses, belly laughs, bubbly,
wine, decay and crumbs;
flights of fancy, feathers,
teeth, words, breath…
Would you see
then in truth
the very richness
that you are?
by Ingrid Goff-Maidoff
This seemed like a fitting poem for the days just after the Gaelic harvest festival Lughnasadh took place in my part of the world, with its invitation to celebrate the precious glimmers in the world around and inside us. I’m personally not so fond of real diamonds but for me they work as an image for what’s really valuable, and both in good and in difficult times, it can be hard to recognise it and let it in. The neuro psychologist Rick Hanson has brought much research and writing into the world about the importance of pausing with those good things, of lingering with them and really letting them in. No need to do that with the bad stuff as it makes a deep impression all by itself, but those ‘diamonds’ that are everywhere are so easily overlooked… and taking them in repeatedly is one of the surest ways to raise the baseline of your happiness!
In the ‘Taking in the Good’ practice which Rick has devised, you’re invited to do that with good things of the present moment, in your life at this time and the past, and also of yourself. And seeing our own goodness and beauty is often not straightforward either… so I thought the above image connected nicely with it, and it came from a featured post on Ingrid Goff-Maidoff – a “universalist poet, artisan and celebrant of beauty”. Browsing on her site, looking at her artwork and many books, I came across other words that touched something in me:
God spoke today in flowers,
and I, who was waiting on words,
almost missed the conversation
Here’s to a summer with many flowers and much goodness, and a frequent taking it in…
PS If you’d like to ‘take in the good’ with others in a supportive community of people who practice mindfulness, you’re so welcome to join one of our free daily practice sessions on zoom!