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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

What I Found Up There

Just a short post tonight, and something a little humbling to contemplate. On Tuesday of the previous week was the Ching Ming Festival here in Hong Kong. This is also known as Tomb Sweeping Day. It's the day when Hong Kongers head to the family burial spot of their family members who have passed away. 

It's a day for contemplation about mortality and life's meaning.

Well, I don't have any dead people to talk to in Hong Kong, so I headed out the back of my apartment block here in Discovery Bay, Lantau Island, and hiked up into the hills. I have found a nice little meditation spot there to contemplate things. It takes about half an hour to get up there, and it is quite a steep hike (in fact a little dangerous in places). You can see it in the video below.

You may not have thought of Hong Kong as having such a place of solitude. Now you know better. In fact there are many fantastic hikes all around Hong Kong. Lantau Island is quite big, and there are several peaks one can ascend here.

It was while sitting on my little rock that something dawned upon me. The very rocks that I was seeing and experiencing connectedness with would out"live" me by many tens of thousands of years. In fact thy might even out-exist the entire human race. And as I sat there my focus fell upon a small plant rising from the grass. As I allowed my own consciousness to relax and connect with the plant, another thought entered my mind. This little plant was millions of years in the making in evolutionary terms (as is my physical form, and much of the way I experience consciousness). I wonder if you too can feel that connectedness, by watching that little plant in the video below? Even if you can't, try this little process soon. Sit down with a plant somewhere in nature (or you can even do it with a pot plant or in the garden), and allow yourself to connect with it. Relax, bring yourself into presence by focusing upon your breath for a few moments, then feel yourself collapsing into the plant. Jut feel whatever comes to you. It's good practice for activating what I call the Feeling Sense. The exercise will take you out out of the head, and into the heart. If nothing else, I guarantee you will find it very peaceful.

Now, one final thought for the day. What if human futures were not mostly about connecting with machine interfaces, the glass screens of the gadgets in our palms, or soon (probably) embedded in our brains? What if we learned to value connection with nature, with the body, and with the spirit? Are these things not just as important as going online? Perhaps they are even more important.

You will find my little plant friend at about 30 seconds into the video. It's rather windy up there, as you will note...

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