“Whether we are six or sixty, we can forge a new brain pathway that goes beyond former dead ends… let us join with children to imagine and wonder, to use curiosity as the guide to miracles in plain sight. Let us enter with them into wild wonder…” -Amy Tan

In the essay “The Life Within” published recently in Orion magazine, Amy Tan describes the practices of nature drawing and nature journaling. She relies on advice from John Muir Law to build her practice: As you draw the bird, try to feel the life within it.

She writes, “Now I look at the bird before me and imagine how it senses the world, how it feels breathing cold air, how it feels to have its feathers ruffling in the wind, how it feels to have an eye out for possible food and possible predators… By feeling the life within, I am always conscious that all creatures have personalities, and so do trees and clouds and streams.”

What grabs your attention today? How do you imagine its “life within”?

For the full essay, click HERE:


– Jess Stevens, curating mindfulness for Isabella