Cultivate Your Sacred Vision

Spiritography Day 5: Imaging the Sacred in Everyday Life

I’ve been spending a lot of time cultivating my capacity for spiritual sight through the medium of photography. While it has been a challenge, it has allowed me to slow down, contemplate, and linger over moments of beauty.

I used to take such an aggressive approach.  I used my lens to hunt and capture, rather than open up to the moment and receive the image. Photography was a conquest rather than a contemplative act.

The challenge is to shift my physical eye from seeing the obvious to beholding the sacred within each moment with my heart’s eye. My ability to see the world beneath the surface appearance of things is growing, but it takes time, patience, and practice. I’m learning to see with wonder, respect, and humility.

We don’t realize how blind we have been until we begin a contemplative practice. Technology, speed, and the busyness of everyday life in Western culture fosters this habit of blindness. We forget that there is more beneath the surface of things because we are so used to using our sense of sight to quickly survey our surroundings and to scan over things.

I’d like to offer you the opportunity to cultivate your own spiritual vision.

It will require you to sit in a relaxed and comfortable position.

You may use the photographs I’ve supplied below as your point of focus, or you may choose an object from your everyday life.  It could be anything that you use on a daily basis but often falls short of your full attention.

Take a deep breath and allow yourself about 10 or 15 minutes for this exercise. Do some deep breathing before you start.  Offer gratitude for the opportunity to draw nearer the sacred. Then, when you are ready, begin with a soft gaze while releasing any inner judgments and projections as much as possible. The less the ego is involved, the more the sacred will reveal itself.

Let go of your expectations of what you think you will see and instead just be with it. Become intimate with it. Allow yourself to “receive” from it. Take notice of what this stirs within you. Let go of the need to analyze the experience.  Enjoy the process, and give gratitude when you are finished.








“Looking Up”



I would love to hear how the process goes for you…feel free to share your insights below.

8 thoughts on “Cultivate Your Sacred Vision

  1. anonymous

    Another great blog my dear… the two pictures that resonated in me was the anticipation n looking up……
    anticipation I loved of the look of the dog….it reminded me of the anticipation of Santa coming to my house….it was that feeling when I woke up n come running down the stairs couldn’t wait to rip open the packages n then being surprised that I actually got what I wanted….n I was so happy…..just like the look of the dog waiting on his master to get a bird he can retrieve. ….
    the other picture was looking up…..I love the blue sky n the white clouds reminds me of what I think heaven would be….beautiful…. calm….and peaceful……I always look up and play the shape game with my son….see what images we see in the clouds…love it….my son is so good at it….I love it…..
    what beautiful pix….thank u for always making me see things in a different ways….love ya…

    1. Penny McDaniel Post author

      I’m so glad those photos resonated with you.

      The more we train our eyes to see from different perspectives (without the ego), the more we immerse ourselves in the moment and connect with the flow of life.

      Thank you for taking the time to do this exercise for yourself. This can be done anywhere at anytime…just focus on something or someone, without judgment, and just absorb it to see what the moment has to say.

      Blessings, my friend.

    1. Penny McDaniel Post author

      Thanks, Gena. It’s been a challenging, but rewarding spiritual practice. I’m learning!


  2. Judy - Pedagogical Artist

    Penny 🙂
    Beautiful post.
    Beautifully written.
    Beautiful language.
    Beautiful photographs.
    Beautiful thoughts emerging from each.
    Thank you sooo much for this opportunity to take a break and just listen with one’s eyes and heart.
    HUGS <3

    1. Penny McDaniel Post author

      Thank you so much for your beautiful words, Judy.

      I appreciate you stopping by and sharing.

  3. Judy W.

    Hi, Penny! Your second paragraph spoke to me, leading me to continue. Thank you for writing this beautiful piece and sharing your exquisite photographs.

    1. Penny McDaniel Post author

      Hi Judy.

      I’m so glad it resonated with you. When you focus on it as a process rather than as a product, it really changes the way you approach things in life.

      Thank you for stopping in and sharing.


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