By Terri Carr
“The evolution of the animal kingdom is a pristine, humble evolution – one of pure spirit, uncluttered by ego. The animals have much to teach us in their ways. They remind us of a time when natural simplicity and flow reigned, before the modern era when the ego was crowned king of this physical dimension”. In his book, Silent Power, author Stuart Wilde poignantly highlights this beautiful truth to meditate on.
One such animal is the national bird of India, the peafowl. Aside from the fact that the male is uniquely stunning, the peacock also has special iconic status due to its mythology, folklore and cultural history. In India, and parts of South Asia, it is said that Dravidians worshipped the peacock. Important Hindu deities, Kartikeya, Lakshmi, and Indra are deeply connected to the peacock. Mughal emperor Shah Jahan sat on a jeweled peacock throne, while in Buddhism, the peacock is a symbol of purity.
It is understandable why this creature is so revered; it is magnificent in many ways. It isn’t just royal splendor that attracts us to this bird, the peacock offers calm spiritual teachings. Rather insignificant in appearance when born, peachicks evolve. It takes time for them to transform into magnificence and showmanship. With mindfulness, we as humans can imitate similar patterns of growth, to cultivate in ourselves beauty, poise, and grace. In the same way, as a peacock exhibits himself, we must also learn to openly display our best character traits, radiate our greatest attributes, and shine, for the greater good of all.
Many perceive peacocks to be haughtily arrogant and ostentatious. However, if you closely inspect the eye in the feather of its plume, you will see the image of a heart when turned upside down. Peacocks are actually humble and kind. They freely gift their stunning feathers after mating season. The male doesn’t possessively hold onto his iridescent plume; he lets it go. This is an absolutely pure and symbolic form of non-attachment/
We humans should learn to live like this sacred bird of India and become “non-attached”. Do not hold onto things or people. On no occasion be possessive. You will never see a peacock squawking to hold onto its valuable plume. Let us diligently practice APARIGRAHA and make it a part of the Anuvrat. As the peacock sheds and grows new feathers, we as humans must work on shedding old thinking patterns, adopt better attitudes, and give birth to improved minds. We must be less fixed and more flexible. We must trust more in the universe and have no expectations. If we give “feathers” away, healthier “feathers” will grow. Next time you see a peacock open his splendid jewel-colored display, remind yourself that this majestic bird is showing you how to live a life of the immaculate spirit, unimpeded by ego. He is a symbol of “releasing”. If you wish to attract more, simply, let go.
Born in England, Terri Carr Muran currently resides in New York with her husband and children. Sharing her life with horses, dogs, and birds; animals are her greatest passion. She has served on several boards and committees including Save the Children, Leadership Council of Long Island; Kids and Cars; North Shore Rotary; Gold Coast Film Festival, and currently Humane Long Island.