May 11

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Slowing down to pay attention

I’m taking a class in Oriental 5-Element Theory that’s got me paying closer attention to what’s going on in the world around me – specifically, what’s going on in the natural world around me.

The drive from the newspaper to my apartment includes about 15 minutes of panoramic mountain viewing. As I drove home at 5:00 today the sky was blue, the clouds were white and puffy, and the sun was streaming down. What I saw before me was a blaze of color on the mountain. The funny thing is that “blaze of color” is a phrase that’s usually reserved for the world-famous fall foliage we have in northern New Hampshire, when the oranges and reds are so bright that an artist might have painted each leaf individually.

Today, that phrase was equally appropriate. The difference was that today you had to spend a quiet moment to see it, rather than having it knock you over with its power. It was a gentler kind of blaze – the bright green of new leaves; the red tips of trees about to burst forth; the brown skeletons of trees that haven’t yet come back from their winter’s nap; and the dark green backdrop of the evergreens, the trees that provide the structure around which all four seasons paint their pictures.

The way the light hit the hills today was breathtaking. I’m so glad that I was in the car by myself, paying attention to what was before me. Otherwise I might have missed it. Just like I’ve missed it most years before.

As if to fully point my attention to the natural world that surrounds my every day life, I also had the odd experience of stopping in the middle of a roadway and turning on my four-way flashers to allow a beaver to slowly wander in the road.  I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen a beaver on pavement, and he didn’t seem to have any idea what to do about it either.  This is now my third beaver sighting in the last couple of weeks (and none of them have happened at a pond).

I’m so grateful to be taking the 5-Element class. There’s an added richness for me as I see a new piece of my world.


I don’t know about you, but I’m getting bored with naming all of these posts “The Miracle of…” so I’m trying something different tonight.  I trust that the fact that you’re reading “The Miracle Journal” will clue you into the fact that this is a miracle that I encountered today, even if I don’t tell you that in the title…  🙂  Thoughts, suggestions, questions, or complaints?

About the author

Leah Carey

Leah Carey is the Chief Miracle Officer of The Miracle Journal, where she writes about the large and small miracles that happen in her life every day. She is a life coach, speaker, journalist, freelance writer, and lover of life. In all of those pursuits, she works with people to identify what’s already right in your life so you can build an even more joyful and fulfilling daily experience from that foundation. You can find her on Facebook, , Twitter, and YouTube.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.leahcarey.com/themiraclejournal/2011/05/11/slowing-down-to-pay-attention/


  1. Kerry

    I think we get it even without the ‘miracle’ in the title. It sounds like a very nice moment. “All these moments lost, like tears in rain.” 😀

    1. Leah Carey

      Thanks Kerry. I knew my readers would be super-smart. 🙂

      I love that phrase “like tears in rain”. I wasn’t familiar with it so I just went to look it up. I wasn’t allowed to watch Blade Runner when I was a kid, and as an adult I’m not a big fan of movies that will creep me out, so I’ve never seen it. On the other hand, that’s a really great quote!

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