The world is made so that speed and flash often cause trouble. As a maxim might say, “that which is done in haste will result in poverty or pain”. I’ve been reminded of a valuable lesson. It is a modification of the old tortoise and the hare parable. Not that slow and steady wins the race, but rather survive by moving slowly, deliberate and with mindfulness.
I was invited to help the doctor collect the honey from his bee hives. To use the correct terms, we were robbing the hive and spinning the honey. I didn’t realize until I got there that he meant actually put on the suit and net and everything and get face to face with the bees. I was thrilled. Once suited up and protected, we uncovered the hives. Each white box called a super contains a dozen or so frames, like hanging shelves where the bees store their honey. The doctor used a clamp tool to free the first few then handed the tool to me. They were stuck together by wax and it took some muscle to free them. The first one I lifted, I did so rather abruptly. “Slow and easy” he told me, “no sudden movement”. I should have known this. So often we forget the basics when trying new things. We finished robbing the hives and the bees were markedly calmer when our movements were slow and deliberate. I thought of all the images in my head of bee charmers. They move with careful grace where each movement has no definite beginning or end, and they proceed controlling their fear.
I learned this lesson long ago. It was taught to me by the greatest of all teachers, Nature. The natural world can often be understood as a mirror into your own Spirit. If your heart is in turmoil, animals flee from you, bush and bramble stand defiant in your path and the very ground seems to shift to throw off your balance. If on the other hand your heart is calm and still, animals don’t seem to notice you, and each step…. “like a prayer blessing the Earth”. Really all that is a difference in intention and balance but speed is a symptom and by product of both. With all things, if you want to learn a skill to mastery do it over and over very slowly until your muscles can preform without thought. And to put out the calm cool and collected vibe to other people, move slowly, relaxed and steady. And the opposite is true. You want to make a person unsteady and nervous, move with short fast clipped motion and watch their distrust and stress level rise.
This is a life lesson. I am always learning it. As a small child I remember watching my father and the slow, calm deliberate steps he would walk going into the grocery or walking on the beach shore, or even from the back gate to the back door of the house. I find myself as a grown man walking with the same calm and mindful speed.
There are many qualifiers to this speed thing to. Quick decisions are not always fast ones and impulsiveness is not always careless…..too far perhaps.
As if to literally drive the point home, on my way home from the doctor/beekeeper’s house, my thoughts were on the lesson of the beesand treir delisious honey when I fell prey to a speed trap on the highway. I didn’t get a ticket but I got a very real and golden warning……”slow down and make it home”.