I was no more than two or three years old when a strange but wonderful moment came upon me. I was watching the passing scene from a car window as rolling hillocks of very green grass flowed by, lit by sunshine from a blue sky. Suddenly, I was, for just a moment, remembering a familiar Place. Not the place my parents lived in, but a different kind of native land, a Place I had known before. Someone there loved me then, and loved me still, and I longed for it (and them) with a deep, contented longing – contented because I knew that life was not gone forever and indeed went on even then.
The moment passed, and life went on, taking me farther and farther away from that Place, but every once in a while a particular scene, a particular expanse of bright sunlit grass, jogs me back for just a moment to that childhood ride and the marvelous Memory. It only comes when all thought is released, and one simply receives it as a child.
It happened again today. I was alone on the River Trail, and suddenly the Memory was there. It lasted a long time, the whole of my walk, and it gave me new understandings.
It seemed to me the trees, especially, are always singing. It’s a wordless, melody-less song about joy, and suffering, and wisdom, and life. I think maybe all things in nature sing like that, if we learn to listen. It seemed to me, too, that the trees can sing like that because they live all the time both in this world and in that beautiful, peaceful, familiar world. It seemed to me that, walking along, I might at any moment find that I had stepped right into that world, myself. Something in me hoped that would happen. I want to go Home, and I know that it is there, waiting for me. But I know it isn’t time yet.
Here is the thing, though. If the trees can do it, it seems there is a promise that I might, just might, learn to live more and more in the awareness of there, while here.