Weather forecasts can put you to sleep, guide your daily life, or remind you of the vastness of the deep, be it oceanic or atmospheric. An intuition of vastness, in which we recognize elemental forces much larger and more powerful than our individual cares and desires, help us gain perspective on life. That's one reason so many people watch the Weather Channel. They are wondering what the weather will be, and they are also drawn to elemental forces as a way of gaining perspective - vision - for their lives. Weather watchers may or may not believe in God, but they do believe in weather. They combine wonder, humility, and vision in the very act of watching the Weather Channel or, as below, listening to shipping forecasts. They are weather mystics.
- Jay McDaniel
Excerpts from NY Times Essay: "A Secret for Falling Asleep it's so Good It's British National Treasure." Feb. 14, 2023
"Most nights I don’t sleep well, so to relax, I often listen to audiobooks or the radio. Other people’s words keep me from sliding into the canyon of doom, where all around shouts of 'you’re screwed' reverberate. For many months I put on murder mysteries, but in an effort to embrace a more soothing sort of rest, I have started listening to compilations of the Shipping Forecast, a BBC Radio 4 production that is no fancier than its name suggests: It is, simply, a program featuring weather reports that narrate the gales and tides around the British Isles. If some people doze off to the sound of rain, I fall asleep to broadcasters announcing the rain that is to come."
"Vastness, as such, is appealing, and the world is so very vast. Long-wave broadcasts travel far, hugging the planet as they make their way overseas. Like the sea itself, the Shipping Forecast is a reminder of the larger, more elemental forces at play, those things that are much more powerful than any of our individual worries or wants. For eons, there was nothing but the stars and estuaries, the winds, the shore. After making his way out of the mythical cave, man set off to the sea, where the water proffered new realms for exploration. And so, like the ancient mariners before me, I am often awake in the middle of the night, falling asleep to the mysteries of the deep."
May a good vision catch me May a benevolent vision take hold of me, and move me May a deep and full vision come over me, and burst open around me May a luminous vision inform me, enfold me.
— David Abram quoted in Prayers for a Thousand Years by Elizabeth Roberts and Elias Amidon
The spiritual practice of vision encompasses the discovery of fresh insights about the way things are and the cultivation of different outlooks on what can be. It is how you find your own wisdom and align yourself with Spirit. Sometimes this process involves developing good judgment, deliberative skills, and common sense. Other times you may experience extraordinary perceptions, what are often called revelations.
- Mary Ann and Fredrick Brussat, Spirituality and Practice