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St. Francis and the Birds

This statue of St. Francis and the birds is in the garden of the Briar Patch Inn in Sedona, Arizona. I feel a calmness whenever I pass by him as my wife and I enter the dining area, and I am charmed by the bird who seems to be speaking something wise or musical to St. Francis. I am also moved by St. Francis's eyes - they are serene, and I feel that his gaze is alive even though he is metal. I feel like pranaming back to him (Hindi for acknowledging the holiness in any person, but especially a holy person), and I feel a serene peace arising within as I acknowledge his presence. Perhaps you might pause and experience your own peace as you absorb yourself in his presence, even in a statue or a photograph.

Reflecting on this statue of St. Francis, we can practice noticing the world around us more often - the beauty and goodness of our loved ones, our pets, the beauty of nature that surrounds us every day, the stars and moon in the night sky. My iPhone camera gives me a practical way to do this since it allows me to spontaneously take pictures of the world around me. In this way, photography and writing give me a connection with the world and my inner self, I feel a greater beauty of the world.

Perhaps, after reading this, you might explore how to open your awareness more deeply as you connect with the many beautiful manifestations beauty in this world. Most of us have a cell phone with a decent camera in it, and this gives us a doorway for awakening to the many beautiful aspects of this world. Why not explore the world with it?

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