@mssdeleon / Danielle de Leon
Photos and videos by mssdeleon
It’s all Light- everything we see in life, from our physical eyes looking at this flower, to the mind’s eye looking at our unique and individual experience from inside. Observing throughout, the perception of “what is” and “what is not” is created in our mind. Discernment. Beneficial for efficient assessing and problem solving, yet for some reason we get caught up in the labeling of “this,” of “that,” of “right,” and “wrong.” Then some decide we want something new with life, yet this dualistic mentality simply lead me to “I can’t,” rather than “I can.” I have come to realize that this life is all about perception. Sometimes, we simply need to feel more HOPE. I am mindfully working on training my brain to not allow my perception to lead me to a brick wall, and reminding myself regularly that everything is an expression of Light; the variation in front of me simply validates the endless possibilities and uniqueness of what I too will create and experience... This choice of how the world is perceived, is our only true free will in life. The choice in how we perceive our world is the beginning of how we change our world.
It took a few minutes to fly over Hilo as we aimed towards the 5,000’ tall plume of volcanic gases. #LeilaniEstates had been evacuated for a week by then, with fissures splitting the roadways as a response to the internal pressure of the Pu’u ‘Ō’ō crater floor collapsing. The closer we got, the more fascinating this natural phenomenon became. I saw bright blue in-ground pools with rock lava just beginning to drape over the deep end edge, fiery roof tops floating on asphalt-like lava rivers creeping along the homes foundation level; yet happening so slowly it was like watching a moment frozen in time. Only for a few moments, just until we were close enough to see through the thick vog, and had sights of lava vigorously spitting hundreds of feet into the air from the largest fissure. Hawaiian tradition led many to pray that the unpredictable and powerful fire goddess Pele return home into MT Kīleaua, yet it is apparent she is still on the move across the East Rift Zone- an area that has been historically known as a place where lava has flowed in the past. Many who follow Hawaiian tradition accept their fate is in the hands of Pele when living in the Big Island. Although she may seem to sow destruction, they believe she also opens new paths for creation. Pele is also known as the creator of new lands and islands. Hawaiian tradition tells that earthquakes and lightning are all associated with Pele’s family, as are volcanic ash, winds, and rains. Amidst the destruction and focus on the family affected, I feel so grateful for the opportunity to see this natural phenomenon at work, and how humans manage their way around the various wild territories of our planet.
It has all be insanely special. This entire experience. Moment to moment, yet with vast and long term observance involved. I’m on an island with 5 volcanos, one of which just erupted on Thursday (and hasn’t been active since 1984) and is still flowing lava. But I’m not in harms way; I’m safe. I’m taking a helicopter ride over this action, watching it from afar. I can enjoy the scenery and be in the moment. Many play out the juggle, but internal happiness is a toggle and requires balance. Mastering in-the-moment decision making is key. This life is beautiful; I’m at a place where I can be at peace and live to the fullest. Don’t forget that you are, too! 🌺
There is a fascinating dichotomy in life: we are human BEINGS with unlimited power of DOING. The profound impact of your doing on this world is fully dependent on the depth you experience in BEING. Since it lies on a spectrum that is endless, the impression and mark you can leave with your legacy is virtually limitless. You get to choose the magnitude of your impact; that is your free will. It’s not a matter of doing- the answers lie in the experience of being in the moment. It’s more effortless than you might perceive. The flood of answers from within can be overwhelmingly stimulating and motivating; an impact as definite as a fingerprint.
Overwhelmed with long term goals and drive, I often contemplate the whole idea of “getting out,” “escaping,” “taking a break,” “breath of fresh air”.... Yet when I am constantly contemplating, there are no break and there is no rest unless it is facilitated by pure brain power through focus. It never stops, there is this constant progression seen and faced in my mind. The next level is sitting there, awaiting for me to grab it and push for it. So why would I stop? Why would I take a break? I’m trying to get to the end of something that has no end, just to see how far I can go and how long I can push. This life is for me, because I need to know me to serve you. Life is a marathon, not a sprint. Give yourself the breath of fresh air you crave in this moment, right now, through focus. Focus. It’s the end of your exhale. Extending the duration of my focus and calmness, contentment waves over my mind. I know peace in this world because I have seen it inside myself. This is my escape. The picture is just a fancy lure to see how hungry you are for this perspective, and I am always thrilled to uncover who can keep up. Photo and video are just a tool, your mind and body is just a tool. It’s the art of observation and awareness without judgement that is YOU, this is your true Self. This is what will transform the world. It’s in the end of your exhale, not at the end of a roadmap, trailhead, or financial statement. When you give yourself a break to be in the present Moment Of Now, it becomes your escape and window of transformation- they become one in the same.
Obstacles exist for us to overcome and be directed by, not for us to be blocked. It’s like thinking “the window of opportunity has closed,” when we are all staring at a flight of stairs. Then when you start walking up the stairs. Perception shapes our reality, yet we must discern that perceived reality is not necessarily truth...