Communing with wildlife and nature spirits in my garden is a favorite pastime for me.

My yard backs up to a bird sanctuary that is home to a forest and a wetland habitat. As a feng shui practitioner and nature lover, I spend joyous hours reaping the benefits of my environment while offering appreciation and taking in the wonders of Mother Nature.

One cold winter day, my dearest friend and I were sitting in my kitchen as she lovingly provided her support during a potentially challenging time (which thankfully turned out to have a positive outcome.)

All of a sudden, she stood up and excitedly exclaimed that she just saw what she thought was an eagle. She is an avid birdwatcher so even though this sighting would be relatively uncommon for the area, I pretty much believed her, and with good reason.

I swiftly grabbed my binoculars as we both ran for the deck. At just the right moment, we were feasting our eyes on not one - but a pair of adult bald eagles as they were landing, in all their majesty, on top of an osprey platform in the sanctuary.

Apparently, they were house-hunting and liked what they found because these first-time renters chose that platform as their nursery.

How blessed I felt! For the next few months I was honored with the extraordinary privilege of observing the fascinating behavior of these awesome birds of prey on a daily basis.

One of the most important aspects of feng shui is "the Tao" or concept that we are all connected. My eagle watching opportunities allowed me to experience this connection firsthand. I became keenly aware of the vital life force of creation.

On an individual level, seeing and actually feeling the grace and strength of those eagles brought me into total alignment with feng shui, as I considered just how meaningful and important it was to have feelings of connectedness to the outside world.

As part of a community, guided by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Division, I was proud that we were all doing our part to show respect to this beautiful pair, who were very sensitive to human disturbance during the critical time of nest building, while educating others on how to compassionately and reverently give the new parents well-deserved privacy.

From an ecological standpoint, I was thrilled to have them as neighbors since it was a good indicator of the health of New Jersey's environment. Their mere presence signified positive energy/chi!

Feng shui is about getting in touch with our surroundings. As we learn to sense the chi in all things and open our minds and hearts to what is around us, we can create spaces that are balanced and supportive.

I was taught many things while watching those spectacular birds. In flight, they reminded me that freedom is our birthright, and that we can find the courage to reach new heights.

With intense stillness, they would spend hours perched in a tree exhibiting absolute patience and fortitude. Clearly, they knew all about being in the present moment.

When nesting, they demonstrated sheer perseverance and unhurriedness as they (jointly) incubated their eggs with fierce dedication withstanding inclement wintry weather conditions. Confidently and inherently, they understood how to abide by the laws of nature.

Unfortunately, as fate would have it, after more than a month of dutiful nesting it was determined that the egg(s) were not viable and there would be no babies this time round.

This saddened me very deeply, but then I thought of the valuable life lessons being offered: Experience Joy Now. Respect Nature and All Living Things. Just Be. After all, the essence of feng shui is to follow nature's lead to bring harmony and inspiration into our lives.

Note: During the 60's & 70's, bald eagles suffered due to the rampant use of DDT and other dangerous pesticides. It is reported that the banning of DDT in 1972, combined with the legal protection they received from the Endangered Species Act of 1973, positively affected bald eagle recovery and comeback. In 2007, they came off the list of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants, but are still protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Bald Eagle Protection Act. May we learn from our mistakes as we continue to respect them, and all of God's creatures.

Author's Bio: 

Susan Tartaglino is a Red Ribbon Professional member of the International Feng Shui Guild.

After training with feng shui master Nancilee Wydra, founder of the Pyramid School of Feng Shui, Susan received her certification through the Feng Shui Institute of America.

Susan was first introduced to the concepts of feng shui during her residency in Hong Kong in the 1980’s after randomly coming upon a book by the pioneering author, Sarah Rossbach. Once she discovered how influenced people were by their physical environment, Susan was instantly intrigued and eager to learn more about person-place connections.

Becoming a feng shui practitioner was the perfect path for Susan to share her enthusiasm and embrace the power of feng shui to positively affect the lives of others. Combining years of feng shui study with a passion for interior and exterior design has enabled Susan to successfully assist others to achieve balance, comfort and inspiration in their environment and in their life.

Susan enjoys a dedicated yoga practice, spending healing time with nature in her garden, and hanging out with close friends and her two cats.