Bearing witness to the lessons of nature

Screen Shot 2013-07-11 at 11.04.01 PMI admit it: I’ve been a bit of a voyeur this past week. A friend sent me a link to Explore.org, where you can watch one of several webcams strategically placed for an unobstructed, secret view into nature. My productivity has suffered as a result of this find but my spiritual satisfaction has definitely improved.

The Brooks Falls Brown Bear & Salmon Cam allows us to peek into the hunting habits of bears in Katmai National Park in Alaska. It’s really quite incredible. For hours on end, these magnificent creatures wade into the cold water to grab a bite to eat. If you’re a nature lover, I highly recommend a look.

After hours of study, I’ve come to recognize specific bears, each with a unique identity and personality. It’s fun watching their hunting tactics: some sit on top of the falls, waiting for the spawning fish to jump up into their mouths while others prefer the deep recesses of the bottom falls, trying to dive in and catch a mouthful of the Alaskan delicacy.

There is something deeply spiritualistic and fulfilling watching this spectacular sight.

The bears are not encumbered with the same spiritual concerns that we are. They don’t create vision boards with pictures of tasty Salmon. They don’t create daily goals for how many fish to catch and I doubt they spend much time sitting quietly visualizing a successful hunt. I also have serious doubts that they spend even one minute of time examining their beliefs about attracting abundance into their lives.

Obviously, there are differences in the types of consciousness of humans and bears so we have different priorities. And I’m not bashing the very spiritual tools that I write about so frequently. Instead, I think there are some things we can learn from these furry creatures that apply to our own conscious creation efforts.

Expectation

Bears know where the Salmon are located. One look at the webcam and you’ll see exactly where the spawning fish jump up the falls. Once they get into the river, the bears know they’re in the right place. From there, they simply expect that they’ll catch a tasty morsel. They’re not thinking about what happens if they don’t catch any fish. They’re not concerned about whether their hunting methods are better or worse than their friends’.

Expectation is an extremely important and necessary component of conscious creation. Our expectations create the very reality we experience. So when we want to become deliberate creators, we must drop a lot of our preconceived ideas about life, the environment, and ourselves.

Instead of lack, we must expect abundance. Instead of failure, we must expect success. Instead of roadblocks, we must expect cooperation. It’s time to stop judging others and ourselves and time to turn our minds in the direction of the things we desire. It’s not easy to do, but it’s imperative that we learn this crucial lesson.

Expectation runs in the background of your mind, so it can be tricky to readjust it if necessary. Upbringing, past experiences and beliefs all contribute to your expectations so it’s important to first become consciously aware of your expectations and determine if they are serving you well or holding you back.

Patience

It’s hard to be patient when you’re hungry—just don’t tell the bears. Patience is another crucial ingredient in the conscious creation mix and it’s one of the most common reasons we don’t reach our goals. Impatience is a focus on lack, specifically on the lack of goal achievement.

In conscious creation terms, we become frustrated if something doesn’t manifest when we want it. And when we don’t get that treasured “something,” we feel like we’ve done something wrong. In absolute terms, we’ve stopped expecting that we’re going to receive what we desire and begin to doubt the process.

Expectation needs patience in order to work. A patient mindset tells the universe (and yourself) that you know you’re going to receive your desire. But when you introduce impatience into your reality, you’re telling the universe that you doubt it will deliver the goods. And thanks to the law of attraction, your new thoughts of doubt and lack will bring you more of the same.

Patience keeps your thoughts on par with your goal and allows the universe to set into motion all of the necessary ingredients that are needed to manifest that goal. Don’t get caught in the trap of becoming impatient. It will happen.

Impulses

Impulses come from deep in the psyche. They are the driving force behind our daily lives—urging us to action on anything from eating a sandwich to picking a different route home from work. Unfortunately, we’ve trained ourselves be distrustful our own impulses. We’ve come to rely primarily on the intellect to guide our actions and all too often we ignore the very basic and primal calling card of the inner self.

It’s hard to see on the webcam, but our bear friends rely on impulses, too. Watching the bears, I am fascinated by one sow in particular. She stands in a part of the river with fish jumping up straight in the air in front of her. With little effort, she can easily catch plenty of fish in a five-foot circle around her. Yet frequently, she stands up and moves to another part of the river that doesn’t look as active. Within moments, she’ll dunk her head under water and pull up a big catch.

In the animal kingdom, we refer to this as “instinct.” We label the bears’ ability to successfully hunt as an unconscious assimilation of evolution and intuitive know-how. Yet the bears are simply following their own impulses—a deep urge to move to another part of the river. They don’t second-guess those impulses—they act on them. Impulses are designed to lead you toward your greatest fulfillment, so learning to recognize and act on impulses takes you one step closer to successfully reaching your goals.

Living in the present moment

Have you ever absorbed yourself so fully in something that you lost track of time? If you have, then you’ve had a taste of living fully in the present moment. Living in present time doesn’t mean you need to stop and meditate, although it’s a nice, refreshing thing to do. It means giving your attention fully to the task at hand, whether you’re washing the dishes, paying your taxes or feeling at one with the universe.

Our bear friends are masters at this, hands down. Watch them and their attention to the hunt. For extra detail, pay close attention to the sea gulls that circle the bears while they hunt. The gulls gladly clean up any discarded pieces of fish and they frequently walk or fly within inches of the big furry creatures. Yet the bears are not distracted. They look intently into the river, placing their attention on the fish below, patiently waiting for the right time to act.

Enjoyment & Gratitude

In between meals, it’s not uncommon to see the bears playing on the riverbanks. Sometimes they’re splashing around in the shallow water, other times they’re rolling around playfully with each other. It really looks like they’re having fun and that’s an important takeaway.

Life is meant to be enjoyable. It’s the intellect and the ego that usually cause us to cease having fun. We become encumbered with too much thought. We get caught up in thoughts of the past or worries of the future and we miss the opportunity to have fun in the present moment.

When you set your intention to have fun no matter what you’re doing, you set up a vivacious environment for yourself and the universe. The world can’t help but respond with more things to enjoy—perhaps even more fun than what you’re doing right now.

Finally, an attitude of gratitude seals the deal on that wonderful environment you’re experiencing. Gratitude broadcasts a feeling of thankfulness, peacefulness and abundance that the universe then sends right back to you. Gratitude is a given for the bears; their contentment from a great day of fishing is natural. But when we as humans lose our own natural sense of gratitude, it’s important to take a moment and reconnect with it purposely.

For now, I’m grateful to this wonderful website for allowing me to watch these fuzzy creatures splashing around in the wilderness. It’s like Salmon for the soul.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Joy
    Jul 14, 2013 @ 02:36:46

    I appreciate this reflection–a refreshing affirmation as I practice presence to unfolding and learn so much of this process through time spent in nature!

    Reply

    • Honor Your Spirit
      Jul 14, 2013 @ 02:41:44

      Thank you for the comment. Nature is always refreshing to me — from the monsoon showers we just received in Denver to a day in the mountains to a walk on the beach. Nature, in all its forms, is very grounding for the spirit. Keep on learning! 😉

      Reply

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