• Temmi Ungerman Sears

A Time for Reflection

First day of summer and a crow’s screeching woke me at 6:30 a.m. It’s persistent annoying call felt like an unwelcome intruder, aggressively pulling me out from a deep sleep. My ears searched for it and there I found it – on the apex of the roof of my brother’s cottage right next door. After getting up I still felt very unsettled and couldn’t even focus on reading, my early morning ritual. On the dock with coffee in hand, I watched seventeen Canadian geese slide into the water from our property and glide away. I counted nine babies. Later in the early evening light, I noticed a heron standing absolutely motionless as if in meditation on the grass near the lake . After some time it simply lifted off with such grace. Sharing the very end of the day with my son, we sat together at the edge of the dock and watched a beaver leisurely swim along the shoreline and the quick startling movements of a fish surfacing for an instant on the water.


My senses open. And I reflect. It is believed that sometimes animals and birds may choose people and I laughingly wondered if perhaps the crow had chosen me for its presence remained all the day, screeching away intermittently. This seemed strange for I had never previously experienced this. Always open and aware of whatever messages the universe may be sending my way, I briefly read about the symbolic meaning of the crow. I learned that the crow may choose someone to become that individual’s spirit or totem animal. That chosen individual is then supported in developing the power of sight, transformation, and connection with life’s magic and mysteries. So this carries the power for deep inner transformation.


What are the lessons and transformations that this summer will deliver? Summer is generally a time of reflection for me. My four-hour kayak rides provide me with solitude while surrounded by such natural beauty. I exercise, and experience exquisite quietude and repose. Then my yoga practice which sustains and teaches me so much is practised in the same exact spot that I have spread my mat on daily for thirty-two summers. Here I practice to the reflection of the sky and trees on the water, with life pulsing all around me. The presence of the Divine is felt, and each day is sacred and savored. Here, on this simple dock, truth and beauty surround me. Perhaps the crow will join me.


“The still waters of a lake reflect the beauty around it. When the mind is still, the beauty of the Self is seen reflected in it.”            – B.K.S. Iyengar

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