Practitioners of Wonder
I stepped into the wind tunnel leaning in just a bit, my hands and arms tucked against my chest, then slowly I lifted my arms up.
My body began to hover, to lift up.
I was flying!
My instructor, a man named Soul, was within arm’s reach; I felt him make small adjustments to my form, signing with his hands how I should move mine so that I could turn.
I’ve been to an iFly wind tunnel before. The first for my best friend’s bachelor party, the second was for a family outing, and this most recent third, a promotional offer we had received.
This time, my body felt entirely different. My chest and lungs were invigorated. My arms and back and legs were liberated. I smiled instead of holding a grimace of worry.
Afterward, I felt as though I had received some kind of therapy, which had alleviated all of my ailments: aching left hip, sore lower back, tired lungs, and mild anxiousness.
How had three minutes in a wind tunnel improved my health?
Soul, my instructor, said “There’s not much else you can think about when in you’re the wind tunnel.”
“It felt different this time. I’m completely rejuvenated,” I shared with him.
“You’re a new man than the previous times,” he said. “Every day, you’re someone new.”
This iFly instructor was my guru, if only for half an hour that day. He had a way about him that put me completely at ease.
In the pre-flight training, he took time to give thanks for the earth and the moment we were about to receive, the gift of flight. He vocally acknowledged his and our collective humanity, while teaching us safety and wind tunnel skills. He was the kind of guy you want to philosophize with.
If I could only be like Soul.
What I learned that day is that taking flight means relaxing. There’s both a letting go and a giving in. There’s control, but it requires surrendering.
Just the other night, I dreamed that I was flying, except this time, instead of leaping into the sky as in previous dreams, I was simply leaning forward as I had done in the wind tunnel. In my dream, I heard Soul’s voice reminding me to lean and let the wind take me.
I flew just a few feet off the ground. I realized I was flying, and when I tried to work at it—air swimming as it were—I came back down to the earth. But when I relaxed and embraced the wonder, I lifted up again, as though flying was another of my natural skills.
We all have the ability to fly, it just depends on how relaxed we are, and it helps if we have good instructors, those practitioners of wonder who come along to re-align us with our innate abilities.
This Post is republished on Medium.
Photo credit: Unsplash