Nathan Peterson

Receiving What Is (My Daily Walking Practice - Part 3)

This week, continuing my 4-week series on how and why I take my daily walk, I want to share the third element of most walks. Once I let go of the dream, I am able to wake up to real life--now I am present. Now I am able to receive what is.

Receiving what is is impossible when we're stuck in our thoughts. A thought about food cannot nourish you, no matter how vivid or frequent the thought.

I believe that at some point in all our lives, we become so hungry for real food that we are forced to wake up to the real world. When we do, we are pleasantly surprised to find that we're surrounded in all directions by a practically infinite abundance of food. We wake up from a nightmare of famine, competition, and "not enough." This is not reality.

It is, however, what makes headlines and sells products. Our collective belief of 'not enough' and all the behaviors that stem from that belief, drive billion dollar industries. If we can wake from this dream, we find a very different reality--one of sufficiency and generosity.

(Did you know that people are currently working on ways to mine gold from asteroids? How long have we believed that gold is rare? What has changed? Only our perception. Whether or not we find gold in space, this points to one thing for sure: our perception of reality and reality itself are not the same…)

On my daily walk, at some point during my attempt to release yesterday's thoughts, I experience relief in my body. I take a deeper breath. My eyes shift from the sidewalk, and some distant dream, to the horizon of the world in which I actually exist. I notice the trees. The colors. I hear the cars, the birds, the airplanes. I feel the cool air and the warm sun. When I "look up" from my dream, I begin to receive what **is***. I am nourished. *Finally.

When the space previously occupied by yesterday's thoughts and beliefs is cleared, **the world **which is naturally flows in. An infinite world, infinitely new with every new moment.

There is so much here for us. There is no way to take it all in. All we can do is enjoy it as it flows through. This generous flow is blocked by our occupation with old thoughts. Letting those go opens us--we are a conduit for life's infinite flow.

This applies to more than just breath and senses... when I allow my wife or my children--not my thoughts about them but the them which* here and now *and has never been before--to flow through, I finally receive the real them. Not do they appreciate being received, but I am deeply nourished by them.

A new wife, new children, new friends, a new world with every new moment. It's a cliche, but it's true: every moment is a gift.

When I practice letting go, looking up, and receiving on my walks, I'm not just practicing a meditation "technique;" I'm practicing being alive.

This is all extremely challenging. Maybe some of the hardest work humans have in front of us today. Change is hard. This is a new way of being, and it feels much easier to just go on living the way we have. And, change is scary. I'm afraid that if I let go, the universe as I know it will somehow fall apart. I'm afraid I'll "lose my grip" on my life. I'm afraid of what others will think or do... and this is exactly the point. Fear isn't inherently bad. Its function is to protect us. To keep us alive. In this case, however, it is misinformed, and leading us right off a cliff…

We've got to wake up from this dream, where the universe is something we are responsible for holding together by knowing everything about it… where we can have "a grip" on the infinite flow of life… where we have any control whatsoever over what others think or do. Let it all go. You never had it in the first place. It was just a dream. Wake up to the surprisingly wonderful reality of what is. Be nourished by it. Finally.

There is so much here for you.

I'll conclude with the final element of my daily walk next week, but I want to pause here to give you a chance to explore how this looks for you…

Something to try: Wherever you are, open your eyes. Not wide, but deep. Let the light and colors flow in. Open your ears. Don't be selective--let all of the sounds flow through. We are habitually hyper focused. There are billions of colors and sounds, and we are only experiencing one. Let it all flow through. You are sending a message to your body: you are safe… receive all that is here for you. Can you feel your body shift when you do this? Can you feel yourself being nourished? Can you enjoy it?

#freedom #my daily walk #presence #self-awareness #self-care