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The Soaring Eagle

I was watching an eagle in the sky the other day. We occasionally have them in our area as there is a nesting location several miles to the south of where we live. The eagle was flying in slow circles, using the thermals to gain altitude. The circle the eagle was travelling in covered a lot of ground. I watched the eagle as it circled higher and higher, until it was almost out of my sight. Then it suddenly took off in one direction like an arrow. It occurred to me that this could be a representation of how some people perceive the actions of others.

We all know of someone (or ourselves) that seem to be moving aimlessly in circles. It seems that they are not sure where they are going in life, or who they are. They seem to drift around and around with no clear purpose. Some people with a very strict, goal orientated attitude can perceive this as wasting time and in some cases talent.

In the Medicine Wheel each of the four directions (South, West, North and East) have an archetype that is represented by an animal. Each archetype has qualities, gifts and ideals that it embodies. The South is the serpent, the West is the jaguar, the North is the hummingbird and the East is the condor or eagle. The eagle and the condor have the ability to soar high above in the rarified air. They can see the whole landscape from that lofty position. They represent that ability to see and perceive how all of the pieces fit together, yet still have the visual acuity to see the details from that higher perspective.

It seemed like it took a while for that eagle I was watching to reach the altitude it wanted. It seemed like it was circling aimlessly and not accomplishing anything. If you shift your perception to that of the eagle looking down, instead of a person looking up at the eagle there is a different view. The eagle was slowly and calming surveying all of the landscape, taking in the details. It took its time to understand what it was seeing. It was utilizing what was available (the thermals) to achieve the altitude that it wanted. Once it finally understood what it was seeing, once it had achieved the position it wanted, the eagle took off like an arrow with no hesitation.

How many people have you encountered in your life that seem to be drifting in circles? How many people have you assumed as being uninspired? Perhaps they are just circling and gaining altitude as the eagle was. Consider shifting your perception to that of the eagle so that you can understand the whole landscape and see how all of the details fit together. You will see a different interpretation of what is before you.


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