Natural Patterns


Over the years we lost a few trees to storms. Mostly oak or maple, so cutting the wood into usable logs for the fireplace was the norm. Occasionally the tree was old enough that the larger logs required additional splitting afterwards. This large log did not look like the photo when we cut it. It was just a log from a dead tree lost to insects. It escaped the splitting pile because it weighs about sixty pounds, is about eighteen inches high, about a foot in diameter, and we could use it to brace the ramps for the lawn tractor when it needed repair. The log was given a designated place outside near the garage with the sun, rain and snow.

The fact that this dead log had sprouted a beautiful ringed pattern of living blue, white, black, and brown fungi after a few years was a surprise. I was entranced by the multiple colors and symmetry of pattern. I actually sat down by the dead log. For just one minute. The longer I studied this pattern, the calmer my body felt. What was going on? This is a visual pattern. I had just paused for one minute to study it with my eyes. How did looking at a visual pattern in nature make it feel like my body was relaxing? I was really curious and spent many minutes doing research.

I found out that using my eyes to consciously observe the patterns of symmetry in nature is actually stress- reducing.

I wondered what would happen when I consciously notice exactly what I am seeing. Looking for patterns in the natural world around me, taking just a minute to notice the details and color, is having a positive effect. Long drives are more pleasant, the world seems filled with more color even in winter.


Mentastics Minute:
– Notice your breathing when you take one minute to pay attention to the patterns and symmetry in nature.
– Observe your thoughts and feelings when you pause to wonder about the patterns you see in nature, see the intricacies of symmetry.
– What does it feel like to consciously notice what your eyes are seeing?