Find your Zen in the Sky

Zen Living at it's best means taking chances and facing your fears. That is when your living begins. I knew it was time. There were no more excuses, no more reasons to deny what I knew what was inevitable. It was time to fly.

If we look at our lives from the outside looking in, we realize that there is a synchronicity of circumstances that inevitably come together. They are the signs you have been waiting for that cannot be denied anymore. Your thoughts are creating your life and you have to rescue yourself to create new experiences and new adventures that serve your greater purpose.  It catches up to you, and I knew that if I wanted to travel for my work with Zen Living by design, if I wanted to continue my mission work in rescuing Koi and defending our natural waters I was destined to blog about flying in a private plane. Facing one of my fears would bring the people, places and opportunities together in an amazing experience. If I would just live in the moments.  They are moments, plural my friends. It is not in one defining moment until you find your joy,  your path and face your fear.

People come into our life for a reason or a purpose - for us to learn and grow. As in nature and in our own life, exposure is a metamorphosis, and this autumn was my destined transformation. This is when I met Captain Amer Jammal. As a private pilot, Captain Amer flies his clients to their destinations and the journey is simply fascinating. I was honored to be introduced to this kind and gentle soul. I could see in his eyes that he saw my fear yet knew I was determined to rise above it.  He graciously accepted being the bridge to the light, allowing me to experience a flight in a small four seat, Cessna 172,  private plane for the first time.

Could I possibly find Zen in the sky? Does it really exist.. this light on a higher level?  I had to let it happen. If I wanted to experience Zen Living from above, I couldn't stay down here.  I looked out the window and touched my hand to the glass.  As we rose up into the winds of flight... my co-pilot friend said to me ... "No fear, M." Those words became my mantra for the entire flight but as the plane took off , the words "no fear" transformed into a smile on my face as I knew in these moments, I kept my promise. As an infrared photographer. my series of work, Seki Gai Kou, Japanese Gardens in Infrared Light had become transparent.  I wanted to see this light and water from this higher level.

In infrared photography, light is captured that is beyond our visible spectrum, that is undetectable with standard cameras. There is an ethereal glow, a mystical light that reveals itself, especially when the element of water is present.  I shot this image from the Cessna aircraft window at about 3,000 feet above the ground. As an advocate for Waterkeeper Alliance and keeping our waterways clean, I found from this different perspective how truly connected we are.


Now I can see my world. I can begin living the dream. Seeing why it's meant to be seen. Yet, as our  conscious knows... life is an illusion. Everything is connected. Within myself in the sky... I found a deep level of calmness. This was my infrared world. Yet I knew there was an experience beyond the simplicity of the black and white illuminating pieces and I discovered below me a world of vibrant color, light and energy that was the portal of a new awakening. I found Zen in the sky.


It is about falling free. Finding your Zen in the sky... by facing your fears and truly making a difference in the lives of others. One particle of light at a time. A lifetime of gratitude to my muse, and co-pilot in training Porzia, who has unveiled my wings.


Love and Light...



Captain Amer Jamaal offers private flights, giving each of us the opportunity to find our Zen in the Sky. Captain Amer is available for private flights and can be reached at 708.663.5341 or on facebook at

All photographs copyright 2012 M, MaryEllen Malinowski, Infrared Light International for Zen Living by design. MaryEllen Malinowski is a Member of WaterKeeper Alliance.

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