Word of the day...some mornings I ask for a word as I pass the front door for my morning walk and use what comes to mind as a focus for my photography...
As I headed for Ocean Beach this morning I called out for a Word of the Day. When the word master in my head clearly said the word “luxury” I replied, “how about another?” But no, I had to stick to the game. And true to magical form I passed a bus that stated “Love and Compassion are not luxuries…they are necessities”. So I knew I was in the right place.
I have been recently learning about the Hindu pantheon of goddesses, one of whom is Lakshmi – the Goddess that embodies manifestation, divine abundance and sacred beauty. This word felt like an inquiry into her world. The question of luxury first took me to images of precious, expensive and seemingly "unnecessary" things. Luxury goods are known for a level of beauty, refinement and craftsmanship that hold great value but few can afford to own. But what about those things all around us that cannot be owned? There is an important aspect to luxury - that is the role of appreciation. Without it, would luxury even exist? Luxurious experiences allow us to relax, release, refine, and reflect. These were thoughts that emerged as I walked in appreciation of the spaciousness of Ocean Beach.
I walked onto the beach just as the morning sun was breaking open in the east, drawn toward the expansive calm of the ocean, the early colors of dawn dissolving into the new light of day. To enjoy a luxurious state of being (and yes, it does bring joy) clearly requires slowing down and an opening of the senses. It is the sensual beauty delivered by the winds as they masterfully massage and sculpt the sandscape. It lives in the loving touch of the ocean as her fingers softly caress the beach’s edge. It radiates as the jeweled colors of the sun's reflection on the dancing water. To experience the luxurious moment is to be open to and receive pleasure. To walk barefoot on the cool sand. To stop and ask the early morning sun to warm the skin of your upturned face. Love and compassion? Perhaps luxury itself is a necessity.