Sunday, October 26, 2014


Row Cloud Messenger, Burlington, NC
Butterfly, Burlington, NC

I was recently driving back through the Carolinas from my final beach trip of the year. As the wind began to increase I noticed the growing formation of billowing row clouds stretching from horizon to horizon, signaling the changing seasons. Since I still hadn’t completely disengaged myself from unstructured beach time, I pulled off the interstate and grabbed my camera to quickly capture a few sky images.

As I was editing the five hundred photos that I had taken during the trip today, I stumbled onto the final images on file. The row clouds were interesting as I scrolled through them. And then my eye caught the anomaly in one of the images I had taken as I panned the sky from east to west. A quick cropping of the image revealed the fleeting image of a colorful butterfly riding the wind that had totally escaped my attention as I took the photograph.

Humankind has pondered the influence of the butterfly for centuries. Many cultures believe these winged spirits personify angels and loved ones who have gone before us. Their short life span and physical transformation from a slowly crawling caterpillar to a beautiful spirit animal taking flight always captures our imagination. Their resurrection to an ethereal winged spirit serves as a sobering reminder for us to live in the present moment, for life is fleeting. But their serendipitous and unannounced appearance in our lives also reminds us that as we complete our mortal journey, we simply transform into a spiritual dimension freed of gravity and time. They represent joy, freedom, creativity and change. Their transformative influence symbolizes the shaping of our own life and soul evolution.

When a butterfly crosses our path we should pause life and consider the message of new life that it brings to us. And only we alone can discern the spiritual meaning for our life at that milestone of the journey.

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