To see is to gaze past the obvious. What is in our field of vision is not what is always there before our eyes. In yoga, there is the term, “Drishti” – a focused concentrated vision allowing us to really see the world as it truly is. It brings the world into clarity. There are so many distractions both visually and mentally, that we often miss the intricate and beautiful design of the universe. Think of snowflakes, leaves, how the grass rolls in a hay field on a windy day, the curl of waves breaking upon the shore and other visual pictures that are sometimes taken for granted.
One crucial action for us to be able to accomplish this sharp vision, is to detach from technology. Take a walk down any street and count the number of folks who are looking solely at their phones missing what is right in front of them. We miss so much when all we can see is our phones. And, yes, I am guilty of doing this. It’s a shame that we live in a distracted world. It is amazing that we miss so many of the intricate designs of nature. I was often out on the morning feed run when I used to work on the farm by myself. I spent the time developing my powers of observation. Rather than dump feed and move on, I stayed and watched the horses and made sure they were in good stead. I was trying to blend in with the universe and feel its energy. It was a great chance to become more observant. I began to tune my vision into the landscape. Our eyes often send us messages beyond what you see in front of you.
Take some time and observe people. You can tell by the look in their eyes what kind of energy they are projecting at that moment. Watching the horses was an education, because they see so much more than my untrained eyes did. Over the course of my time at the farm, I began to be able to view the landscape but also train my eye to detect movement against the landscape. I was able to witness a flock of turkeys without disturbing them, foxes playing in a field, even watching eagles observing me observing them and my most favorite, the oncoming rays of morning’s sunrise.
In horse racing, you will see horses wearing “blinkers” . This limit the horse’s field of vision and its focuses the same on the racetrack ahead. To see is one of our most precious gifts. Its power is boundless. For me, sight allows me to stand in awe and wonder of our amazing planets and its inhabitants. Seeing is also, the gateway to knowledge. Remember the line from the old spiritual, “Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now I am found. Was blind, but now I see.” To me, this means being willing to accept and understand another point of view. WE see the veracity of another’s way at looking at things or a subject.
We hear sportscasters talk about the quarterback’s field of vision in football and the ability to see the entire field of play while bodies are flying around at high speed. This is a skill that has to be developed. Pretty amazing when one thinks about it. In showjumping, its about seeing your spot where you and the horse take off before the jump. Vision is so many things beyond sight. Add a laser focus, a stilling of the chatter in your head, and a slow rhythmic breathing that lowers the heart rate thereby making you more relaxed and fluid and at one with your environment.
To see is to be present, alive in what is and it promises the chance to witness the good, the bad, and the ugly. It also promises to have us bear witness to all that is and all that can be good in our marvelous universe. Take your blinders off, leap off the treadmill or hamster wheel as I like to call it and experience the magic of the amazing miracles before us. We are truly blessed to be a part of this story.