Monday, May 2, 2016

Mindful Monday- Listening To Birds

Mindful Monday- Listening

"Now, while the birds thus sing a joyous song,
  and while the young lambs bound,
   as to the tabor's sound....
No more shall grief of mine the seasons wrong...
                  William Wordsworth, Intimations Of Immortality

   Closing my eyes, I make my way up the stairs to the office. I like trusting my body's memory when I climb. In the dark of early morning I search for the match box and light the candle. Light flickers around the still room. Carefully I push the window open, just a little. The world is still quiet at 4:45 am. Today I am meditating on bird songs. I completely relax and allow my ears to ready themselves for the eventual "dawn chorus". First the sound is far away and then a young dapper robin opens with gusto. He announces that he has survived the night and is by far the most able, handsome, musical fellow anywhere. He has some competition but each time he rises in a more fevered pitch. 
  I meditate on the most divine bed, legs curled up under me in wide-legged position. This month I am listening better, more often, and with more attention. A bee strolls in the open window and catches my ears. Before I have to move to escort him out he quickly escapes.  

I'm learning.
  My three keys to a peaceful life are emerging as, meditation, mindfulness, and self-compassion.

"And so we, like the poet, can begin to perceive that our everyday mind is a small fallible part of our awareness. We can become aware of a presence that essential you but at the same time inconceivably greater than you. This is the great consolation of feeling that we are part of divinity."
                                                                 M. Catherine Thomas

May is a month to explore listening. You can read more about my Year of Mindfulness here.

Join me in a wonderful class on self-compassion taught by Brené Brown and Kristin Neff, 
Starts May 16, click here for more information.



  1. I am not an early riser by nature, but I have found that one of the benefits of the early morning is the song of birds. They don't seem to sing so much later in the day.

    1. They really belt it out at dawn.

  2. So so pleased we 'met', Gabriele. I'm learning so much from your own process (and am thankful for your generosity in sharing it with us, so gracefully). Thank you.

    It's so so important to mindfully listen, isn't it? Not only for our own peace (and to enhance our experiences) but for our relationships, too. I'm so pleased you're focusing on this for May and will look forward to reading your thoughts about it. (I know, myself, since I've been focusing on mindfully listening to my littles, I've found that I'm enjoying them so much more as the wonderful people they are; not that I ever ignored them, or didn't listen to them, but taking the time to *really* listen to them has deepened my appreciation of them so much).

    (Thought you might be interested to hear: My son, whilst in my womb, used to wake me up at dawn chorus time every morning, as he used to move so much when he heard the was the most wonderful feeling and I've always had a very strong connection with the early morning birdsong since that's such a joyous, life-giving, time of day).

    The course looks great (but budget can't stretch to it at the moment!). I'm doing my own inner work in this area which is helping. (It's amazing, once we start doing this work, how much we thought we knew about ourselves that turns out to be only superficial emotion, isn't it?!).

    Did you see my email? I think you might find some sessions in this - free - online conference series useful... You can register here: Sessions are live streamed and then also available for 24/48 hours after broadcast.

    1. I did see your e-mail, Helen. It looks good. Thank-you. How interesting that your son responded to the dawn chorus before birth. Cosmic!

    2. He's definitely one of those humans who has a cosmic connection (even though I notice that he's becoming increasingly more wary of it).

  3. It's great to read about all you're learning and I'm glad you're finding peace as you explore mindfulness. I was walking in the park the other day and enjoyed taking time to listen to the birds singing. There is something beautiful and soothing about it.

    1. There are always one or two birds who stand out and I wish I knew what kind they were.


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