Daily Archives: August 13, 2011

8.13.11 The Wonder of Supine Moments

Many evolutionary biologists reflect upon the wonders not only of human beings’ thumbs but also of our upright, bipedal moment. But I’ve been wondering today about supine moments.

Two winters ago, I led a group of uniformed prep school buys to be “idle and blessed.” We wandered and wondered into the courtyard and sat in a hut of creative questions. The stillness unsettled some of the anxious teens prepped for industry and analysis. When the polite bow-tied head master later asked me – the visiting scholar – what I was up to, he smirked and told me how a few years earlier some boys had asked if they could start The Big Blue Sky Club. “What would you do?” the head master asked the boys. “Lie in the courtyard and gaze up at the sky,” one boy said. “We’d just stare at the sky and see where that took us.” The head master approved the club.

Today, I mowed the back area behind the pond and the orchard. Then I retrieved from the shed an old, wrinkled raft and blew it up. Stripped to my underwear, I pushed off and in two minutes was supine, water below me and treetops and sky above me. For 20, 30 minutes, my body and mind drifted between this world and some other.

So what about you? Is there a hammock or sofa, a patch of grass or bench, a raft or bottom of a canoe, or just a bed or yoga mat or favorite floor where you can surrender your noble body to gravity and float for a few minutes? It’s not a bad habit, and it can do wonders for what you think is real and worth holding onto.

No matter, share your Saturday’s three highlights – and let us know where you’re writing from.

See you in the woods,
The Three Highlights Guy