Rituals for Calming the Noise

Available as a card in my Etsy store.

By the sea is where I calm the noise and recharge my spirit. I’ll be leaving for a beach retreat later this week and already I’m anticipating the sweet mood of respite and relaxation. To settle my mind, and crack the crust of built-up worries, I wander the beach and collect stuff - little bits of smooth driftwood, and if the conditions are right, lots of sugar agates and other rocks. Sugar agates are my favorite; smooth, milky stones with a sugar-coated-looking surface when dry, but are translucent when wet and held up to the light. They come in a range of pastel colors from white, to dawn grey, to apricot, to rosy. I am especially entranced by the ones most egg-like or round – I’ve collected tiny snowy ovals to smooth, palm-size agate spheres.

I’ve even imagined a story where the agates are a type of currency in a utopian, Avatar-like tribe; the ritual collection of these rare treasures is part of the tribe’s spiritual practice, and, so, the exchange of currency becomes part of the ritual, too. Or maybe they just have magical powers... I can't decide.

With my focus on finding treasure, I walk and bend and gaze at stones, walk and bend… then, carefully reach, and select and stow, select and stow. And, soon without noticing, I’m a mile up the beach and I’ve crossed over into the calming zone of sea sounds and gull calls; I’ve crossed over into care-free tranquility; my mind is floating and free, spirit cleansed and expanded. After a few days of this, I regain the momentum to dream, create, believe, and I plan what I will buy with my agates.