This summer, pause.
Seek the nectar of your life.
And maybe…write about what you taste.
I was on my small deck, reclining in my tangerine orange gravity chair, grateful for the breeze dispersing the mosquitoes. I guess you could say I was daydreaming, which seems to be a new spiritual practice of mine——though I have never called it that until now.
My mind was not entertaining any dream beyond the beauty of the moment, when the butterfly pictured above soared into my vision.
Quite playful, she did not land on any of the many blooms in the window boxes of my deck. Instead, she hovered above the orange and yellow lantana and the purple million bells for what seemed a remarkably long time before inserting her proboscis into the heart of a blossom.
How miraculous to watch and to reflect upon the aiming for and receiving of nectar.
What a reminder——about writing and about life: To be present. To seek the nectar. To savor.
We don’t have visible wings or antennae, but aren’t we in essence like this butterfly, creatures that require nectar, that also must enter the heart in order to truly flourish and soar?
To my delight, instead of eating and running, the butterfly lingered. And lingered. Even after darting across the lawn, she returned to circle my head as if playing with me.
“Dad?” I said out loud after the leaving and returning had at least happened three times. (I have heard that the departed often appear in the form of butterflies. My dad was not someone I would ever have thought of as a butterfly, but I was willing to suspend disbelief.)
“Dad, I love you. I hope that you are free of what weighed you down, that you are soaring.”
The creature–I am not making this up–seemed to do an aerial pirouette right then. Joy almost palpable.
She also let me take dozens of pictures of her (some shared here).
Spiritual teachers speak of the space between the breaths, where pause and creation happen. Being in the company of this butterfly was a sacred “gap,” a space in time that was timeless.
In writing this to you now, I taste again the nectar of that butterfly’s presence and the wonder of my father’s spirit alighting (even if just in my imagination). What a perennial gift writing is, leading us, when we let it, deep into the heart. To harvest the nectar. To harvest love.
Yours in the joy of creating,
JOIN ANI'S INNER CIRCLE OF READERS Get Chapter 1 of Ani’s novel, The Tremble of Love: A Novel of the Baal Shem Tov and Chapter 1 of the new audiobook edition—available soon! And be the first to receive Ani's occasional posts.
Your comments make this blog a conversation!
I would love to hear from you.
To avoid spam all comments are moderated by Ani. So if you don’t see your comment show up, not to worry; your comment will be up within within 24-48 hours