The fresh awareness of yourself, of life, and the world around you that comes from doing things that open you up to challenges, wonderment, and feeling in new ways.

I can't imagine myself bungee jumping - maybe a little TOO open and adventurous for me , but in many ways, large and small, when we look around us at life, people, nature, ourselves, and let ourselves feel open to even the ordinary things of daily life, we let inspirational insights in.

What reaches inside us to lift us up can be different for each person, yet can also be something others can share and relate to. The important thing is to recognize those moments, acknowledge them, treasure them. For me, it's often nature, animals, and children. A child's hand stretched out in trust -such a simple thing, yet also profound - can take me out of the adult world of work politics, daily concerns, pettiness, and lift me to a simpler, yet higher level of feeling and consciousness, to inspire me to be the person who deserves that trust. Nature's beauty is calming and soothing for many people, allowing us to transcend concerns and anxieties, but peaceful settings in nature are also symbols of vitality, connecting us to them and reminding us that we are part of a larger picture.

In this larger picture are subtleties and mysteries of microcosms of life going on below the surface of a lawn or on a vaster scale in the unseen birth and death of heavenly bodies beyond the stars on a clear night. Even the awesome power of nature, its destructive forces, make me think about the wholeness of life, how it challenges us to go on after disasters, to live and feel in each moment, even the painful ones because we grow from the pain and we reach out continually for the good and the positive. Wild animals let us observe natural behaviors and rhythms of life we can identify with. And pets allow us to relax and be ourselves, get in touch with trust and playful simplicity.

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Inspiration is present in human creations, i.e. books, music, art, but it's also all around us in everyday moments when we're open
to it.