Much of mindfulness practice encourages exploration of the senses, using that beginners’ mind whereby you notice your surroundings with curiosity. And of course, there’s more opportunities to smell, hear, taste, touch, feel and see when you’re trying this outside, as opposed to when you’re sat on the couch.
The more I’ve practised mindfulness over the last few years, the more grateful I’ve felt for the natural world around me; the more I’ve actually noticed it in the first place.
So in that spirit, here’s a beautiful 19th century poem from William Wordsworth. This poem brings to life the beauty of the great outdoors and the way that you can capture it, and call upon it, even when you’re indoors.
As the weekend ensues, be sure to plan some outdoor adventures. You may not find any daffodils, but you might just capture ‘the bliss of solitude’ instead.
by William Wordsworth
I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.
The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.