On the subject of “nature walks” in Sally and Sarah Clarkston’s book “The Life Giving Home,” she writes the following:  “Such walks provide a matchless way to help children learn the art of attention, to train them in the art of wondering so that they learn to meet the world as a miracle.”  I am thinking the same is true of books.  Would you agree?

While the whole quote is good, I particularly like two phrases.  “The art of wondering,” and “meet the world as a miracle.”  Both of these phrases move me…touch my heart in a special way.  Doesn’t it seem like children in particular, without even knowing it, engage in the art of wondering?  We adults need to do more of this…more wondering…more being moved by both the ordinary and extraordinary that surround us.  Marveling at the earth, and the life that moves and breathes, the skies, the sun, the moon, the stars.  And people.  What if we looked at people and saw their beauty and uniqueness?  What if we wondered about how things work together, fit together, hold together?  How the one is part of the whole?  What if we gave thought to the simple and the complex, turning our heads to the side in a lengthy pause to consider what was, what is, what could be?  When I read “the art of wondering” I think to myself…it IS an art.  A talent.  Something we adults should practice…like being grateful.

And that second phrase, “meet the world as a miracle.”  I want to put an exclamation point on that!  I like that the author did not say “see” the world as a miracle, although that would have been good.  She said “meet.”  As if embracing, becoming a part of it, welcoming it.  Touching it, and letting it touch us. Inhabiting the same space in a “life giving” way, as the book title suggests.  Maybe even considering ourselves as one miracle meeting the miracle of all that is around us.

Today. Perhaps in your walk of life, perhaps in a nature walk, or perhaps in a good book…  May you practice and enjoy the art of wondering, and meet the world as a miracle.  Well said, Sally and Sarah.  Well said.

Mike Beagan

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