English Romantic poet, John Keats in his poem Ode On A Grecian Urn, has an important message on how to approach living that is transcendent and speaks to your own source of true happiness. John Keats suggests is that we elect to identify beauty with truth and truth with beauty we can find peace and happiness. Beauty can be found all around us, from a budding plant to a majestic mountain.
Throughout history, poets, philosophers, and scientists have equated beauty with the peacefulness of a full realized life. Emerson described beauty as "God's handwriting," and urged us all to "never lose an opportunity of seeing anything that is beautiful." Keats goes a step further and equates beauty with truth.
Take a moment and ponder what your truth is. It will undoubtedly be what is real for you, meaning what you experience with emotion or feeling. For example, your feelings of accomplishment or your inspirations are true and therefore beautiful.
Keats goes on to relay the message about nature, and albeit something may appear to be nonviable, has a life force invisible to the eye. This is actually the eternity that Keats refers to when he writes, "when old age shall this generation wastes, thou shalt remain, in the midst of other woe..." This "thou" is a friend to all of us when he says, "Beauty is truth, truth is beauty; that is all ye know on earth, and all ye need to know."
I think about this message every time I look outside my window and see the tree I nursed back to life. Several years ago, I nearly called a tree service to take down a tree in my backyard. Something inside me said not to. I decided to meditate under the tree. During my meditations, I envisioned the tree's roots penetrating deeply into the earth absorbing nutrients. I saw its branches rising high towards the light of the sun. I also spent time talking to the tree, touching it, and practicing yoga beneath it. Every breath I took during my yoga practice I envisioned as a breath for the tree.
As part of the tree healing process, I decided to hang a bird feeder from one of its branches to attract additional life force energy. I also hung a chime so every time the wind blew it created a sweet sound vibration. Low and behold, what seemed to be a dead tree came to life. This life force that was invisible to my eye is what we can call truth.
When your heart opens to experience beauty, it opens to experience truth. See beauty all around you and you will see truth. Know yourself, and live your truth. This is your authentic self, the person you were born to be, and the life you are meant to live.
Things You Can Do:
- Take time to see what is true for you
- Be authentic and practice your own truth being independent of the opinions of others
- Toss judgment out the window and stay with what intuitively makes you happy
- Spend time in nature every day and notice the beauty in all things
If you would like to further explore powerful aspects of nature and how it impacts you directly, take a look at my third book Mother Nature a Bridge to Conscious Living. You can also explore ideas of happiness by delving into the Happiness Chronicles - Short Stories and Recipes to a Happy Life. I am the co-author of this book along with seven other like-minded colleagues from around the country and Canada.