Walking Our Way Home
Some say it’s quite difficult to be born into this world and even more difficult to remember who we truly are, where we’ve come from, where we’re going and why we’re even here. I identify with this difficulty to remember and have been working on it most of my life. It’s like being lost in a familiar place and knowing it has portals and pathways that can connect us to the places called Home but can’t quite be identified and known. Our quest is to find the portals and pathways inside and out by daily walking them with curiosity, surprise and delight. It’s an ongoing process of discernment and discovery.
I suspect this is why so many of us strongly identify with vast open space. For me the country, expanses of water and unpopulated areas are the places that most resonate with the energy I identify as Home. It’s in walking, swimming and spending time in these amazing earth spaces that I find solace, strength, pardon, and renewal. How about you? Where do you experience Home beyond your physical dwelling places?
I was raised in a small Michigan town in the fifties. I walked to my elementary, junior high and high schools. I walked to the neighborhood grocery store and across the street to see my dad, uncle, and grandfather who owned Meyers Service Station. I walked in the fields and streams with my cousin Tom. We explored the railroad beds, cow pastures, streams and apple orchards together. We pretended we were explorers. We walked, talked, and lived close to the edge of the numinous wherever we went. We were always Home. When he died in a car crash at age sixteen, I walked alone.
Today I find myself walking in many wonderful country areas to engage the miracle of creation for myself and for you. One of these areas is a two thousand acre ranch that was donated to the county for open space so it couldn’t be developed. The family loved the land so much they gave it up for public use and kept only a few hundred acres for the children and grandchildren. It’s an amazing gift to those who love to walk, sit, jog and ride horses on dirt trails in a vast expanse of trees, pastures and mountain vistas.
Walking Our Way Home opens mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual connections that can be made when we walk with awareness. When conscious attention is given to our environments, the fields of perception expand and allow us to literally become part of where we are. It’s no longer a subject/object relationship. It’s an interconnected relationship that unites us with the fertile space called Home inside everything. The vastness of our True Nature is revealed. Separation becomes illusion. Home is Heart!
This evolutionary process is continually inviting us, drawing us, helping us awaken to the miracles that are always here wherever we are. When we come to realize that we are part of the Whole, contain the divine seed of the Whole, we begin to recognize that wherever we are can be Home. Thich Nhat Hahn in the above quote promotes walking meditation. How meditative, aware and present are you when you’re standing, sitting, walking, talking, strategizing, analyzing, meeting and greeting? What? Hmm. . . .
In its fullness, Walking Our Way Home is physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. It’s inter-relational and interactive, rational and trans-rational, five sensory and multi-sensory, seen and unseen, known and unknown, conscious and unconscious. It’s living in the infinite and inexhaustible Presence of Being, Belonging and Becoming. It includes yet is beyond tribe, race, geography, social class, time and space. It’s the inexhaustible and wonderful divine essence that’s the Life in us all. It’s taking place in every breath and pulse of life. It’s where we’re going and where we are. It’s Awareness!
- The next time you take a walk, do it differently. Approach it beyond a simple physical exercise and open to the expansiveness of the Who that’s Truly You. Allow the walk to help you experience the Homing instinct that’s inside you. . . Feel where you are. Open yourself to the multi-sensory nature of your Being. Experience the inner and outer awareness of how you are connected to where you are internally and externally. Discover Home from the inside out. . .
- Another exercise is to experience Home when you’re feeling disconnected from yourself and your environment. Allow yourself to slow your thoughts, emotional aggitations, disconnections and alienations. Come Home to your breathing, feel your pulse, relax your muscles, stand up and center yourself through gentle movements and conscious breathing. Then return to what you were doing while staying within this calm and centered space. Experience the grace of this embrace for as long as you can. Notice when you lose the connection and return to it. . .
- As you walk through your days, remember to remember that you are so much more than you appear to be. Reconnect with your soul, that part of you that’s not affected by external events and circumstances. Become aware that each breath can be another step Home. Give yourself many breaks throughout your day to stop, look, listen and learn from your inner witness and guide.The simple step of just stopping for a moment is a passageway Home. Embrace it and enter in as an ongoing practice of Presence. . .
- Your Presence is Your Product. . . Meditate on this. . . Allow it to assist you in Walking Your Way Home. Notice when you experience your Soulful Presence beyond your ego presence. . .