Beginner's Heart

Beginner's Heart

indigo buntings and multiple truths ~

Warning: if birds don’t make you think of infinity, then you may not want to read further…

This week I saw an indigo bunting feeding at the bird feeder. Nothing fancy in the feeder — just the usual small seed mix. But the bird? Wow. Brilliant blue — electric blue. Darker than this picture looks. The colour of blueberries on hallucinogens :). The colour of something important that you should remember always…


I saw it twice — it may even be resident in the neighborhood, as I think I saw the female (nowhere near as colourful). And it reminded me of why I sit outside… Because the world happens.

I know — the world happens anyway :). But not with the same magic. Not w/ the precision of a mockingbird pecking the seed block for the berries within. Not with the determination of the ladderback woodpecker hammering away at the suet cake within its copper basket. And not, for me at least, w/ the same sense of infinity.

Birds are old creatures, it seems. Even older than I thought as a child, now that we know they link back to dinosaurs. My childhood belief that pterodactyls were birds was based in the real, although it’s also what a friend calls a ‘multiple truth.’


Multiple truths are when there are different ways of looking at (or thinking about) the same even. If I believe in evolution, but you don’t, it’s hard for us to communicate. Birds, for you, won’t link waaaay back, the way they do for me. But if you and I talk for a moment, perhaps you’ll be able to live with the idea that I don’t find a creator impossible to reconcile w/ evolution. Sure, it could have been a big chemical accident. Or it could have been intentional. I really don’t know.

I do believe, however, that birds go back farther than 8,000 years, which makes me a bit heretical by some Christian standards. Still, time is fluid, and perhaps, if we talk, you can live with my truth (that I just don’t know how things started, and it may well have been divine providence) and I can live with yours.

The problem is when we don’t talk, and get defensive. There’s nothing wrong w/ either of us — or what we call ‘truth.’ There just may be more than one version…:)

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