What can nature's cycling of nutrients teach us about inspiration?
Nothing exists in a vacuum and all organisms
take in energy to transform it.
Many of our greatest scientific inventions came from dreams and include: relativity, natural selection, the periodic table and even Google! I write about the genius of dreams and how dreams provide a model for thinking in more innovative ways. I also describe how nature may have endowed us with the ability to dream as a way of overcoming cognition's survival perspective and addiction to routine thought. Dreaming may be nature's remedy that is driving greater human potential.
One of the greatest things that dreams teach us is condensation. A dream will take two unlike symbols and combine them in an ingenious message that might inspire us to change. For example, a kitchen in the middle of a desert landscape can suggest a lack of fulfillment. This juxtaposition can inspire us to take two random ideas and explore their similarities by contrasting or combining them to discover something new. In addition to nature's drive toward balance, it also has a tendency to explore innovation through what we might describe as conflict.
Anticlimactic is the disappointing contrast you may feel after a period of inspiration or hope. Yet, nature reveals a pattern of moving from high to low in cycles. Extremes are equalized so that the more stable and interactive something is, the less likely it will be brought down. When a high pressure system is brought low, or when a low pressure system is lifted up, we wouldn’t describe nature’s behavior as favorable or unfavorable. Being returned to a lower energy state is a common occurrence in nature. It is a time for rebuilding, releasing and filling up before a time of expansion.
There is no justice or retribution in nature – only a movement toward organization, harmony, and the dissolution required for rebirth. What you may call misfortune can be the inability to see the future purpose of present events. Be inspired by nature in using your down time for gestation. Nurture your inner landscape to let go of outworn thinking. Let expectation go, the way leaves fall during autumn. Be inspired by the cycling of nutrients that fertilize the soil for your blossoming to come.
If your inspiration is low, physical exercise allows your mind to wander. It actually creates the Theta brainwaves of heightened creativity. Concentrating on repetitive tasks enables you to capture a glimpse of the bigger picture. You can spend your entire life chasing after that thing you might find when you finally arrive. The truth is you have arrived and the time is now. Like the cycling of nutrients on the earth, you are drawn into natural cycles. By allowing judgment to rest, inspiration can rise.
Nature's wonders are revealed, not in what it does, but in how it does it. A tree reaches far and wide across the tapestry of life. Roots absorb water and minerals, breaking apart rocks to create rich soil. Leaves take in carbon dioxide from the surrounding atmosphere, while the chlorophyll absorbs sunlight particles as energy to drive photosynthesis. In the process, trees produce sugar and oxygen for the survival of other creatures. Animals eat the leaves, fruit and nuts that grow on trees, releasing nutrient rich waste back into the soil.
Bacteria break up waste, and the cycle starts all over again. Even what appears inanimate is contributing in some way. There are times to flower, but there are also times to return and be nourished by your roots.
Nature’s harmonious movement reveals how one species finds what it needs, at the same time that it gives something back to the environment. Being solely focused on accomplishment can undermine the productivity and gestation that allows you to give to others. Feeling empty or uninspired simply means you are making room to be fulfilled anew.
All living things must release old growth that is expressed from season to season and the human journey is no different. Feeling stuck may be the result of holding to a past way of thinking where inspiration cannot rise in its place.
The winds blow in different directions to change the weather on the earth. High and low; warm and cold always swirl as wind to create balance. Like autumn, you turn back to regenerate so that you can flower again. Your inner climate can be sunny, rainy or foggy, but it really doesn’t matter. A time of blossoming and harvest always arrives.
When you help another, you can discover your real capabilities. The greatest fulfillment is usually found in the spirit of serving. Nothing in nature comes to a standstill. To find your way, do not place expectations on the time, but move with it. Open the door and let the world in. Participation inevitably leads to abundance.
When you move away from the illusion of boundaries you place on experience,
you will discover there are no limits to what you accomplish.
Explore how inspiration rises when you allow your mind to rest. Go for a walk and observe how your mind also wanders. Notice the difference between thinking and the mind’s looser form of bubbling inspiration. Tap this dreaming – wandering mind, and study life with your peripheral vision. Release any tendency to classify and dismiss the ordinary. Find two things that are different and identify their similarities. Find two things that are similar and discover their differences. Nature explores opposites by bringing them together – it creates novelty because it is open to endless possibilities.