Just before going to the wonderful viewing of "Walk with Me" at Bristol Yoga (because of the wonderful Heather) I realized that my current totem animal is a firefly (or lightening bug which is the same thing.)

I invited Mom and was so glad that she enjoyed the film so much, remarking "that is the most interesting thing that's ever happened in Bristol" and "isn't Heather lovely?!" Yes! Indeed!

I was feeling deep emotions off and on through the movie. They made me periodically well up with tears. Not that they were always correlating to what happened on the screen, though sometimes.

In an opening scene, the monks are walking through the woods, and before I see the monks contemplatively walking there, I notice the noises of the forest. Birds are singing loudly and melodiously.

When the monks enter, their walking seems to bring this real peace to everything, lowering the noise of the forest by degrees. Not in terms of scaring away wildlife, but stilling all of the bustle by magic.

The film follows a year of the life of the people at Plum Village in France, where Thich Nhat Hanh has spent much time since his initial political exile from Vietnam in 1966 for peace raising.

Though there is narration by Benedict Cumberbatch, it is like a guided meditation in itself, in that you get lots of time to think your own ideas and draw your own conclusions, or just be silent.

Even during the movie, I am thinking of myself as a firefly. We all have a brightness of eyes that comes and goes, and I think my firefly spirit is connected with my feeling of hopefulness.

I am having a great joyfulness, like Thich experienced, as he wrote in his journal in 1966, as Cumberbatch narrated. My joy too comes with awareness that suffering and change are inevitable.

We do not fight them. There is this beautiful moment when a little girl asks Thich how to overcome the death of her best friend, her dog. His answer, about the cloud, holds the greatest truth I have heard.

I'll let you check it out for yourself though.