I set off on my walk the next day with a heightened awareness of my five senses and of my mind interpreting and coordinating them. It's a revelation if you do this. It makes you realize that most of the time our minds, left to their own devices, are continually constructing and reconstructing unreal, conceptual worlds of prejudice and supposition, half-truth and fantasy, set in the past and the future - and we're lost to the intense richness of the immediate present.
I 'rotated' my senses one by one, bringing each in turn to the forefront of my awareness, finally trying to spotlight them all equally at the same time. Every time my thoughts meandered off on their usual, routine course of worry and anxiety, taking me away from the 'now', I reminded myself (from some place beyond the 'me' of my thoughts) of the whole chaotic mental process. I became super-conscious of these random, unbidden thoughts as they streamed past - watching them arise, stay a while, then disappear - with a certain detachment and wry amusement.
It suddenly dawned on me that, although my thoughts were part of me, I was not my thoughts. In fact the idea of 'I' or 'me' or 'self' became less central and important the more I immersed myself in pure sound and vision, touch and smell. If I had to put it into words, I'd say, perhaps, that I'd actually become the sightscape and the soundscape, the touchscape and the smellscape - even the tastescape, for smell and taste are very much bound together, and I could almost taste the air, the rain-soaked grass, the early spring freshness. My petty-minded, puffed-up ego seemed miles away, and for a few moments I rested in an ocean of undiluted being...
(All photos taken on my village walks.)