Have you ever had a moment (or more) of feeling connected with the Divine, humanity, and all-that-is all at once? It’s blissful – euphoric, really. If you haven’t experienced this, it’s well worth the effort of trying to induce it. I’m honestly not sure that it’s even possible to do so, but I can promise the effort of doing so is beautiful itself. Let’s look at some ways of feeling connected and see if any of them will work for you:
It’s first because it’s my favorite, though I realize it is not possible for everyone; if you live near an ocean, or have the chance to visit an ocean, go! Spend some time just floating in the waves past the surf line (if safe, obviously), allowing them to carry you and completely support you. I was in Mexico a couple of months ago, and spent a couple of joyful, free, blissful hours just floating, feeling connected to everything and completely supported.
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It’s a nice second to spend time just looking the ocean too. Even without being immersed in it, its vastness and majesty are pretty much guaranteed to at least improve your mood, if not cause bliss.
“Ahimsa” is a Sanskrit word that translates (usually) to “nonviolence.” To try this out, pick fifteen minutes – or five or whatever you can take – and consciously choose to do no harm. This includes catching yourself thinking “I’m so stupid.” It includes noticing that you are refusing to drink water when your body is begging for it, because you need to finish a task, and stopping to quench your thirst. (That would apply to me, right now. Be right back!)
Spending time in nature is one of my favorite ways to feel connected. This morning I had breakfast with my family at our local public golf course, and was nearly mute with awe for half of the meal because there were deer grazing on the green. I’ve felt the same when a particularly beautiful bird lands on the telephone wire hanging over my patio. See if you can’t find something outside that awakens that beauty of feeling connected.
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Los Angeles is fortunate to have these amazing free dances every other Friday during the summer called ‘Dance Downtown.’ They’re free, fun, and I’ve yet to attend one without having one of those spiritual moments of feeling connected. I’ve also felt this at volunteer activities (some of them!), ‘taste of’ events, and fourth of July fireworks displays. Find something in your community where you can be with a lot of people all gathered for the same reason. See what it’s like!
“I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.”
― Brené Brown
Sometimes connection needs to be personal before it can feel global, and sacred listening can help with that. Sometime this week, try this out with one person, preferably a stranger or acquaintance so no ‘junk’ gets in your way: listen with the intention of being present and fully seeing, hearing, and accepting that person for the duration of the conversation.
What are your favorite ways of feeling connected? Leave a comment and share them!