Monday, April 8, 2013

Everyday Spirituality: The Language of the Birds

[ yep. it's one of these things again. For those who know the style, there is no need to say anything, but for newcomer readers, this is where I say a friendly caution. These posts are not about anomalies in any usual sense of the word. If you are looking for anomalies today, and you do not care particularly for the spiritual, then this is not the day. Just skip until the next post, and welcome back then.]


This active "being with" occurred a few days ago, but I wanted to give the blog a little more temporal distance for the discussion that was developing on the Internet effects and the future to have its say. So I kept it close to the heart, and with the daily morning prayers, and the help of the birds, I believe that it has mostly survived. With humility, then....

The morning was cold, but the birds seem oblivious. "Everyone" seems on the move. And shouting about it. You can hear the squawk of Jays, the musical flute of Cardinals, the twitter of elevating Doves, the slurpy songs of Robins. A huge squabble goes up right next in the evergreen bushes. That's almost always Sparrows, but today the Towhees were having at it. A woodpecker furiously hammered at a tree. It was the Language of the Birds.

The Language of the Birds is the language which our ancient ancestors believed contained the secret wisdom of the world. I can't speak it. But I listened........... but...No, no mystic I.

But there is something there. Listen.... listen.... "we are....  we are alive....  We Are Alive!!"

Yes. Not much one might say, not much wisdom to impart. But I wonder? They are alive. The whole around me is alive. I too.

This aliveness is now. This is the moment ... what will it become?

Streaking past high above, a Hawk startles me. It is making a lightning pass at a Dove. I didn't actually see the strike, but I felt it. The part of this whole called Hawk, did what the part called Hawk does. Something complicated just happened. And something simple.

I sat there meditating, the Hawk long gone. A big Buzzard cruised effortlessly over the house and beyond. A little Robin came out right next to me as a surprise once it passed. I said: "Pretty scary, eh?" The Robin blinked but didn't fly. A plane droned over. ..... no one cared. Human simplicity. Nature's complexity.

Then, a welcome human sight: as happens, thankfully, so often, along came the old black man and his old black dog. He walked along with her, more labored than usual, but carrying his extra burden of the pooper scooper as a good neighbor. "Hallo!! How are you today!!", his always full-of-gusto way. "I'm fine. And how are you and your good companion doing?" And as he labored past, "We're getting along."

And they were. She, happy to be with someone who makes her feel comfortable, and he ... too. They were getting along... with one another, and on the path of Life. Even the years were not stopping them, nor their happiness.

The old man is neither Hawk nor Dove. He, the Good Neighbor, is instead the consummate civilized community man. Simplicity is beautiful. And, Complexity can be too.

I wish that I understood the Language of the Birds, but at times maybe we can understand enough.

The morning Sun was high enough now and warming the tips of the tree branches. It had been an unusual night --- just enough moisture to lightly coat the tips with frost. The Sun was melting that frost now .... and the most delightful thing: as each tip melted it became a glorious Prism of dancing light.

Mouth-opened wonder. I, a child again, waited for the Fairies "that just must be there behind this", to break away and fly over.

But, of course, they weren't there. Just The Sun, the Frost, God's amazing Prismatic design for Light....

I guess that is wonder enough.

Simplicity. Simplicity can be beautiful.

.... and we are alive.

Blessings everyone, till next we meet on the Path ... listening to The Language of the Birds.


  1. It's such a beautiful and mind calming article. I felt like I'm under the shower of God's blessings as I was reading every sentence. Thanks. I felt rejuvenated.

    Henry Jordan
    The Equation Game

  2. The birds have a gift that we sometimes cherish for a brief moment before our structured world rips it asunder; the birds live in the moment, not in the past where regrets are many and cannot be altered or planning for the future where we try to control and in the end cannot.

  3. Wonderful picture of the beach and sky.

    You wrote "But there is something there. Listen.... listen.... "we are.... we are alive.... We Are Alive!!" and I am reminded of something that I read: there were two little girls playing in the park and one was heard to say to the other "Isn't this wonderful! We get to be alive again." And I think that is what IT is all about -- the experience of being alive and finding the beauty and thrill of the moment. Although I have had my share of bad moments also, I did realize that even in those awful times I was gathering these experiences up in a sort of collection to take back with me.

    Do you know the poem "Snow" by Louis MacNeice?

    1. I hadn't read it.... very strong visuals, and if one wanted to "work" while comprehending poetry, there seems to be much there.

      I, alas, do not want to work at poetry. So I prefer simpler music and drama in the words. Poetry should flow into you like light honey. And quiet your thoughts.



Blog Archive