a purposeful blindness

There’s a purposeful blindness that centers our perception.  I went out into the garden that hugs the south side of the house.  It tends to be a haven for butterflies, moths, and assorted flying bugs and beetles.  Thankfully, the ravenous Japanese beetles have gone after decimating my lily collection over several years.

I go out with my camera into the adolescent growth which sways with a gangly awkwardness as I wade through it.  Usually this is enough to send most winged beings flying for safer havens.  But that’s only been my perception.  Going over several pictures, I was amazed to find little bugs and beetles, ants and bees tucked away in the recesses of petals and leaves.

The first few shots of this bee balm caught the blossom and my little green friend didn’t appear to me until I stepped into the shadows and enlarged the shot.  He (she?) must have been having a kindness practice day because when I turned back, he was still there, ready to pose in several more angles.  He walked daintily across the petals and paused on the crest of the flower.  It reminded me of Thich Nhat Hanh’s teachings; to walk on the earth as we would on lotus petals without crushing them.

It amazed me that he stayed for so long.  Mostly, it amazed me that I had not seen him in the viewfinder the first time.  And yet, it might have been a good thing because in the excitement of seeing that luminous green against the mouth-watering red, I might have become obsessed with getting the perfect picture and forgotten to be surprised by his tender relationship with the blossom.

Sometimes when we see everything, we miss what is important to truly see.

3 thoughts on “a purposeful blindness

  1. I love the way you use your daily incidents as vehicles for elucidating dharmic ideas. It’s a nice little kindess practice too:)

  2. This is so beautiful. I bow to your insights. Yesterday on my little ones insistence we discovered a new park that I immediately fell in love with. Today when my husband asked me if I wanted to go again, I armed myself with the camera in one hand and baby on the other and went walking there. A little voice was telling me I was going there with this obsession about what looks good and how to take a perfect picture…we went there and switched on the camera and the batteries were out! It was such a blessing for me. To let the obsessive mind go and just be there, present with the verdant green, and other colors.

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