Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Tuning in to the universal rhythms

The rhythm of life is a theme I have been unable to stop thinking about ever since I first saw the movie “Phenomenon.” Seems there is always something popping up to remind me that I should devote more time to thinking about it, as if it has an unrealized importance in every person’s life.

What’s really strange is that every time I do invest time in pondering the topic, I end up asking myself the same questions: “If you ever do figure the whole thing out, what are you going to do with the conclusion you arrive at concerning it? Who gave you the assignment; GOD? Is this the reason you were created? Is this you purpose in life? Albert Einstein gave us E=MC squared and look what we did with that. Now you hope to figure out the relevence of The Rhythm of life, reveal the truth to the whole world and then allow them to do with that secret truth, what they will. ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR MIND?”

There is a basic, natural rhythm to life. It can be sensed in one’s own heartbeat when one is in a state of rest. If you can’t fall asleep at night quickly, it’s probably because you are unable to quiet your mind and get in touch with life’s natural rhythm.

This planet; it has a rhythm. It can be heard when one is able to enter into a place of total silence. The universe we all exist in has a rhythm. Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader refer to it as the “force.” When that rhythm is out of sync, they, being sensitive to its rhythm, simply say “There is a disturbance in the force.”

There is a specific rhythm associated with every individual element of nature. Most of us “learn” to be sensitive to certain ones at various times during the passage of time we refer to as our individual life span.

As new-borne babes we develop a sensitivity to our mother’s specific rhythms. We are most at ease when we can hear her heart beating, her lungs breathing, her voice humming a soothing lullabye or her hand tapping out a cadence that we recognise as hers, thereby we are comforted by it and sleep peacefully.

Those men known as sailors and seamen are sensitive to the rhythms of the oceans and seas of the world. Some are so experienced and knowledgeable about tides, currents and swells they can navigate from place to place without using compass or sextant.

All of nature throbs and vibrates with life and all life has a specific rhythm. If one is to survive out in the wild, they MUST learn to be sensitive to these natural rhythms.

Predators know the life rhythms of their favorite prey species. If they did not learn them they would not be very successful predators and would probably quickly starve to death.

There is a scene in one of my favorite movies; Dances with Wolves, where a Holy Man, a Shaman out on an exploratory ride on the wide, natural prairie, dismounts from his pony and slowly walks along through the native grasses, holding his hands palm side down, moving them in large archs, letting them touch only the very tips of the seedheads of the local vegetation. You can tell, he is focused on what he is about. He is doing what he can to become totally one with the natural world or even the spiritual world around him. He is reaching out, touching nature with his life and being touched by the life that is all around him in return. To myself, it is the perfect example of what it means to be sensitive to the rhythm of life.

What is it that certain Mothers are sensing when they are said to be intuitive or receptive to the circumstances of one of their children? Are they Jedi Knights, sensitive to the disturbances in the force around them?

The whole universe hums with a certain frequency, the ocean tides lick the shores of continents with a certain rhythm. A tethered Elephant sways to some rhythm we cannot hear or sense. Snakes slither, dogs trot as do horses and many others four-legged creatures and they all do it according to a determined rhythm. Insects make a vast variety of sounds, especially at night and they do so in a familiar cadence or rhythm that rises and falls from a determined high to a determined low in volume. Crickets chip, Katydids DO whatever it is they do at night and we become so accustomed to the sound, we only take notice when it ceases. The night is full of rhythmic sounds and each one has meaning to some other creature. The same is true of the daylight hours. We are not as familiar with the rhythm of the day because we are busy contributing our own cadence to the mix instead of being quiet and listening.

We humans are creatures of rhythm. Even the most primitive peoples make some crude form of drum or other musical instrument. Meaning is communicated between individuals by varying rhythm. Focus on one rhythm for too long and it will become what we call “monotonous” and boring. We need constant variety in our intake of daily rhythms to remain content and happy. Who wants to get into a rut?
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