I took part in a mindful photography course last weekend, and this tulip had quite an effect on me!
The tutor, Jill Woodman ( http://katherinewoodman.co.uk/blog/tag/mindfulness/ ) asked the group which qualities we associated with mindfulness. Some favourites were: compassion, connectedness, balance and feeling grounded. She then asked us to take a photo which would represent or depict the quality we chose. I struggled to choose because there are so many things I get from mindfulness, but after some reflection I started thinking about the way that the stillness of mindfulness practice can often allow me to hear my inner voice – which can get lost in the clutter of day-to-day life.
So, umbrellas, (monsoon conditions ensued) phones and cameras at the ready – we went out to explore some nearby gardens with our chosen quality in mind. I came across a patch of glossy, rain-spattered, dark purple tulips that really caught my eye – and this one in particular. The little white stamen right in the middle of the flower seemed to sum up for me what my inner voice feels like – sometimes hidden, sometimes tiny and overlooked, but always central.
I felt really moved when I found this tulip and the tiny flower it held inside, because it reminded me to look a little deeper for my inner voice and to find some stillness where I can let it blossom.