On a morning walk this week, the sun radiated from an azure sky onto my face. The welcoming sound of bird songs pierced the silence. And then a photo opportunity presented itself to me. A picture that provided inspiration when it was much needed.
Walking down a path towards a placid pond, I noticed how reflections of the trees and nearby surroundings were vibrantly visible in the water.
Reflections. That word can be defined in a couple different ways. A reflection is an image that can be seen in a mirror or on a smooth, lucent surface like water. But entertaining serious thoughts or considerations is also a definition of reflection.
I snapped a couple of photos with my cell phone since I don’t take my DSLR on my walks for exercise. Later that morning after viewing those pictures, both meanings of the word came to my mind…and something else as well.
Song lyrics. More often than not, thinking about a certain word summons a song from my memory bank. I’ve written often about this particular phenomenon of my brain, but I don’t know why it happens. Give me a word, and a song plays in my mind.
The word reflections invoked a song from 1967 by the same title and recorded by Diana Ross and the Supremes. Singing the song in my head, certain phrases seemed oh, so appropriate to describe this last year of life for so many of us during the you know what.
Reflections of the way life used to be. Recalling those aspects of life we took for granted prior to this time last year.
Trapped in a world that’s distorted reality. That feeling of being trapped while enduring lockdowns and restrictions. A reality that seemed like unreality.
Happiness you took from me… left me alone with only memories. Missing those happy moments of family gatherings and other occasions with friends which leave us revisiting earlier memories of all those good times in years past.
But then I remembered something. A quote I once found (but don’t recall where) by motivational speaker Gabrielle Bernstein: “The way we experience the world around us is a direct reflection of the world within us.”
Isn’t that so true? How we experience both the negative and positive events surrounding us truly stems from what our world is like inside our thoughts and attitude. If we tend to view everything in a negative light, then our world will overwhelm us with pessimism. But if we perceive even the difficult encounters with a positive outlook, life is so much easier to endure and even enjoy.
A verse from my guidebook for life, the Bible, reminds me of the same kind of attitude. In the book of Proverbs, Chapter 27, Verse 19: God’s Word says: “As water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart.”
Even the famous English Victorian novelist Charles Dickens attempted to advise us with his words in A Christmas Carol: “Reflect upon your present blessings — of which every man has many — not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.”
And when we do exactly that, take time to reflect on those godsends, fill our hearts and minds with thankfulness for those, the trials of this world seems easier to persevere through.
Yet another famous writer and essayist, Ralph Waldo Emerson, who often found serenity in nature, informed us on how we discover beauty in life when we take time for reflection with these words: “When the act of reflection takes place in the mind, when we look at ourselves in the light of thought, we discover that our life is embosomed in beauty.”
Reflections. So much inspiration for life can be found when we take time to reflect on the beauty around us.
Reflections. A lesson can be learned from the image of a still and serene pond reflecting the world around it.
Reflections. Thoughts and considerations for perseverance will enable us to endure this ongoing difficult world we live in.
“The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by reflection.” ~ Thomas Paine