Nature is all around us. I know that seems an obvious statement.
You can spend time only once, like money. Once it is gone, it is gone! To actually stop and ponder, and be present to what is around us, requires commitment.
Recently I have become a 'tramper' or a 'hiker', depending on where you live in the world. Rather than walking around town to increase my fitness levels, I have ventured out on to Mt Taranaki. To be on the mountain with the diversity of vegetation, the birdlife and the ever-changing surroundings, makes me stop and appreciate creation even more.
At the same time, those of us who explore our 'back-yard' need to be prepared for changing weather conditions, where to put our feet, and making sure there is sufficient food, warm clothing etc. Hiking, demands my full attention!
I had this romantic idea of going on solo adventures, spending time with God and Creation. The reality for me at this stage is that going off on my own is not recommended. I need to get my outdoor knowledge up and make sure I am safe when I venture off on my own. After some recent hikes, I discovered that the time I thought I had to pray and ponder, was taken up by my attention and focus on where to put my feet or my poles. The time of silent reflection was interrupted by other people in my tramping party. It takes a while to work out who needs to talk all the way, and who is comfortable with their own thoughts.
There are challenges in 'entering the stillness'. It is not necessarily about the stillness we find around us. Walking in town can be noisy; this is similar on the mountain; where birdlife and the wind through the trees can be distracting too.
To enter the stillness with awareness of the Divine Spirit, depends more on our inner peace and restlessness. Wherever we are, there are sounds, wherever we are there is God's presence. It is training our inner peace and awareness to tap into the love and presence of God.
I am not sure that 'training' is the right phrase. Spiritual practices help us to be present and grow in awareness of God's presence. Saying my mantra on the mountain, is similar to my meditation practice at home. It allows me to foster my inner stillness and refocus my attention from those in my tramping party, to the Love of God in Creation.
Seek Peace. Find it within.