As I walked home from work tonight it is dark ,as always, because I leave work at 10:00 pm. I walk under the huge pine tree at the bottom of my yard that has been there for over one hundred years. I played under this tree as a child, I played with my daughters under this tree, and now I play under the same tree with my dear friend's two sons (who we consider to be our grandchildren.) I live in the house I grew up in. It is a large stone house with a grand wrap around porch. The house is over one hundred years old. It has great character and probably a history that would spook us if we knew the truth. But, back to walking home and approaching the grand pine tree. I put my hand on the tree and closed my eyes. This gesture takes me away from the details of daily living and into the presence of nature. I ask for the people in the world to be the force of peace, to be calm beings, to be grateful for nature, to be kind and helpful, and to look beyond themselves and things. Every evening before bed I go outside to look at the night sky. I marvel at the stars and the moon, and I say hello to my ancestors. I also pray to them. There is power in prayer to your ancestors. The sun, moon , and stars can be a magnificent focus for meditation.
I remember when I was young my mother would have us kneel beside our bed and say our prayers before bedtime. My ritual at the tree and night sky is very much like saying bedtime prayers as a child. The next time you walk outside, slow your pace, walk very slowly, and feel the power of the earth below your feet. (Bare feet is even better.) Oh, yes, and find a tree to hug and talk to. Namaste