Decades ago, I did an exercise in a book about discovering your life’s work. But oddly, the answer to "work that will be most fulfilling" to me was "watching the birds." It didn't seem like work at all.
It started to make more sense when I read an article by a scientist about how looking up at something in the distance above the horizon, can help trigger spiritual awakening when conditions are right. It engages the parts of the brain that are "other" centred rather than "self" centred. Dr. James H. Austin, is taking up bird-watching. He says,
"Any time you can go out and keep all of your visual and auditory senses alive — looking above eye level, hearing behind you as well as in front of you — you’re performing meditation in the natural world. You’re poised for any stimulus coming from anywhere. It’s as down to earth as you can get and still be up in the sky."
Watching the birds. I love this stuff.
Revised from the story first published January 2012 in my free monthly email newsletter, Starry Night. Sign up here.