He felt a slight uneasiness yet wanted to nap the day away. His lover was away on business so there would be no snuggling and affection today. This would be a day of contemplation, meditation then writing. The time was right for a walk.
This walk was not a fitness walk to aid his aerobic health. Nor was this walk any formal walking meditation either. This walk was simply, just a walk along the river.
The first half of the walk went towards the west, against the flow of the stream. He didn’t want to passively just go with the flow. Even though the river surface was frozen over, the water continued its eastward journey beneath the ice.
That day, the flow of the wind came from the west, too. The sky was overcast, but he knew that at least the flow of the sun’s energy was beaming in flow with him. He set about to casually contemplate and personally interpret all of this flowing here and there. How much is allegory and how much is actual physical reality?
He stopped at a clearing in the tree-lined riverbank and gazed at the icy stream. There were some patches where he could see the running water. He stared at the largest one for several minutes.
He pondered the beginning of the river, the middle of the river where he stood, then the confluence where it joined with another river, which, in turn, joined with a larger river, which finally emptied into the gulf of the ocean. All along the way, in every stage, there occurred evaporation into the sky and refreshment as precipitation from source to ocean.
He marvelled at how all of this seemed like a human body. One thing dependent upon another thing, joining with other things to keep going.
He pondered his own being. Many years ago the gametes from his father and mother joined together to begin the intricate symphony of growing into a fetus, then was born as an infant, who morphed into a child, who struggled into adolescence and continued to ripen into adulthood.
None of his being was ever done in isolation from everything else. He was built from molecules taken in as food grown by farmers, transported and marketed by other people, prepared by still others, then consumed by himself and finally excreted as waste to begin that cycle over again. This was amazing to think of.
The mental and spiritual ideas he had about himself came from sources that evolved across the centuries of thought, philosophy, belief systems and scientific method. He was taught these concepts by his parents, teachers, and through other writings, speeches and discussions.
As he again walked along the frozen river he realized that he, himself was a stream within another stream. How often had he become ensnared within the stagnant pools alongside of the stream becoming attached to the easy way out. Escape into the ideas and dogmas that so engulf humanity.
He shivered into a wish to be present at the great Ganges in India. People there took life as stream-entry quite literally. Some of them had the wisdom to know that none of this or us is permanent in the way we’ve been taught. Many, however, still were taken by the notion that we are separate, unchanging entities who visit and are merely washed in the stream.
Others realize that they are only an aspect of the stream. We are not a permanent thing, but are always evolving one way or another. We shall one day come to pass away, as will the stream, as will the earth and the sun. Such is the nature of everything. Everything is impermanent.
A chill came over him and a hunger for food became apparent. It was time to reverse direction to walk from west towards the east. The sun had passed over the zenith, too. Now, he was walking with the direction of the sunbeams that came through the parting clouds.
He felt cleansed and refreshed. He thought of how the cycle will return eventually to springtime and the stream will be refreshed with new life and vitality. He thought of being with his lover again.
The Blue Jay of Happiness delights in the arrival of new fledglings into the world.