I want to share something that happened on my way home from a women’s retreat. As I stepped on the plane, I stopped and glanced down the aisle. I was the last person in the A boarding group, so 59 people were already seated (this was Southwest Airlines, after all).
As I looked at mostly bent heads of my fellow passengers, a question pop into my head that I had never considered before. It made all the difference in my awkward shuffle down the aisle, pushing my suitcase and balancing a heavy backpack on my shoulder.
The question I asked myself, just before walking down the aisle was, “Who is awake and aware?”
I passed many people who were looking down at their phone or other electronic devices. Not sure if they were aware of anything but the digital images dancing in front of their eyes. They certainly were not looking for anyone who was awake and aware, because they were closed in their own cocoon.
I kept pushing my suitcase, adjusting my backpack, looking for anyone who was awake and aware.
And then, it happened. From about 3 rows in front of me – I found someone! He looked directly at me, our eyes connecting for several seconds. I felt his presence, and I know he felt mine! There was an unseen but definite connection that occurred in that brief span of time. Human being to human being.
What a gift to bring to such a mundane activity! It kept me present, in the moment, and completely free to find the perfect seat. It was amazing how alive I felt just being in this simple practice.
I have decided to make this a game that I play in crowded spaces. The shopping mall, the airport, even at a gas station. How many people can I discover who are awake and aware?
There is a subtle shift in my energy when I ask this question. I am more aware of my fellow humans, and I connect with them on another level. I feel almost instant recognition when I do find another person who is awake and aware. The cool thing is that I can see that immediate recognition in their eyes too!
Please join me in this game. As you look for people who are awake and aware, you will experience being awake and aware yourself. It’s the gift that keeps on giving!
Post your experiences here for all to enjoy!