Last night, while enjoying a neighborhood walk in cooler temperatures  with my wife, I focused my attention on the numerous fireflies (aka, “lightning bugs”) that were accompanying us. And I realized how little I’ve reflected on these fascinating creatures despite seeing them summer after summer for decades.

After getting home I did a Google search and found this website, where I learned that fireflies shine their lights as a way of communicating with one other (especially concerning the pursuit of potential mates). I smiled at the notion of one creature shining its light and seeing another create shine in return.

“Namaste” is a familiar cultural buzzword that, like many positive words and phrases, is easier said than truly practiced. It’s a Sanskrit term that literally means “bowing to you” or “I bow to you,” and is used as a greeting. In Yoga classes, it’s often interpreted as something along the lines of “the light in me recognizes the light in you.”

Fireflies appear to be quite proficient at spontaneously shining their own light from within…and immediately seeing the inner light shining forth from their peers. Human beings, on the other hand, are usually so caught up in our thoughts, judgments, and perceptions that we fail to linger on the beautiful reality of our own inner light, let alone that of another person.

Fireflies, like every other living creation in a natural world infused with wonder, have much to teach us human beings about ourselves.