‘How do the geese know when to fly to the sun?
Who tells them the seasons?
How do we, humans, know when it is time to move on?
As with the migrant birds, so surely with us,
there is a voice within,
if only we would listen to it,
that tells us so certainly when to go forth into the unknown.’
The thing I love about this quote is the reminder that in our world, all sentient beings (animals and plants) know the way. They know when it is time to move onwards, time to rest, time to sing, time to flower, or time to shed layers.
Knowing from a place beyond the mind
By knowing, I am talking about something beyond the intellect of course. It’s not like a flower sits there and reasons it all out ahead of time about what he is going to do or say…
“Ooh oh oh…. quick – the sun’s shining! Time to throw out my petals”.
There is just a flow. Some call it instinct, some call it nature. I am sure there are lots of different things to call it. To me, it’s all the same flowing force of the universe guiding us back to the source. It’s that same guiding force that ensures we are in exactly the right place at the right time. It’s the same energy that shows us the mirror right even at the most ‘inconvenient’ moment so that we have the opportunity to address the darkest aspects of ourselves that most of us would rather keep repressed.
It’s this guiding energy that ensures we keep shedding our layers, evolving, remembering who we are, touching ever deeper layers of beingness.
“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched,
they must be felt with the heart.”
It is often the simplest things that can change our perspective and shift us out of the head and into living life from the heart. I’ve noticed that a simple experience of a bird singing a melody ‘just for me’ or a wild creature noticing me with its kind and enquiring eyes, can immediately shift me into my heart. It need not be any more complicated than that.
What the animals can teach us in the most simple of ways
One of my guests on a retreat from many years ago had a rather profound robin experience on a nature spirit walk. Landing right before her, the sweetest little robin red-breast sang and chatted. Before this walk in nature, Sarah noticed how much she was in the head and was very keen to step out of the mind, finding better ways to follow her heart. So she asked nature to guide her and show her how to step out of the mind and into the heart.
From this tiny little robin encounter, she found the most beautiful message. Nature has an incredible ability to return to who we truly are. Her first response was to melt immediately into the moment and feel the awesomeness of this gift. It is such a blessing when a creature from the wild chooses to engage with us.
She could see that the robin was not in his head, but simply singing his heart out to her, enquiring playfully without judgement, connecting soul to soul, in the present moment. She noticed that the robin wasn’t ‘thinking about what anyone else thought’ or ‘contemplating his schedule’. Robin had come with animal spirit medicine. Naturally, without effort, this gorgeous little bird had what most of us yearn for, the freedom to ‘be’ in the here and now, right here in the moment, simply to be! Robin knows. The robin just flows from the heart and Sarah felt it. That is exactly the way it works.
Sarah said from that moment onwards, whenever in doubt, she’ll ask herself ‘what would robin do right now?’. What a priceless gift. Simply asking the question, what would robin do now, transported her to a feeling of the present moment, opening her heart. She found making decisions from this place far more grounded and fulfilling than simply coming from the mind. By embodying the energy of this wild bird, she felt exactly what it was like to step out of the mind and come from the heart.
“When you do things from your soul,
you feel a river moving in you, a joy.”
The soul speaks
It doesn’t have to be complex, in fact, I have found that often the most simple things can shift our perspective deeply. For each of us, there will be something that speaks to us differently and uniquely – something that will remind us of our natural and innate connection with the heart and how to come from this place.
Whilst it may be reflected in the outer world, the guiding energy of the soul comes from within. It is at the heart of us all, without exception. Sarah heard the message that the robin brought her because at that moment she’d found stillness within and listened to her soul. The guidance spoke through something she could relate to in the natural world.
When we truly feel it, it’s incredible. Nature offers us so many great metaphors when contemplating what it really means to step out of the mind and walk the path of our hearts.
I wonder which animal speaks to you and how it can help you to touch the soul and come from your heart?
Stepping out of the mind and into the heart
Coming from the heart is all about transcending the busyness of mental and emotional chatter enough to find that place of inner stillness where we can hear the soul speak.
Coming from the heart is the shift from mind led living to soul led living.
Coming from the heart is not about always getting it right. We realise that there is no right and wrong – but instead experiences that can take us deeper and deeper into authentic beingness.
Coming from the heart only really begins once we’ve stepped out of our comfort zone, once we dare to be our true selves.
You don’t need to know where you are going. In fact, it’s usually better to surrender any preconceived ideas altogether if you can. Just take the next step. And then the next one. Without even realising you’ll soon find that you are on your way because each step of the journey soon adds up.
Soul to Soul