There are echoes, deep sonorous bells that beg to be struck inside of us - leaving us vulnerable. Anything can strike those bells - a question or a kiss, a child or a lyric. For purposes of the blog post my attention observes living with questions - more specifically the question that guided my West Texas travels was "what does it mean to be vulnerable with the land?"
Javelina's are the cutest, a wild "pig" like animal
I took in the mountains and dust, wind and stars, appreciating those rhythms that move so differently from beats that guide those routines in city life. And of course not to romanticize it, I mused at those pleasures of modern living in which I can move through its desert contours physically unscathed - though I did buy some sunglasses at a local gas station to protect my eyes:).
I had an encounter with a javelina! They are the cutest, a wild "pig" like animal, its totem symbology is connected to loyalty to the herd, abilities to defend itself, and recognition of friends. Recognizing friends I am! Thank you javelina!
What does it mean to be vulnerable with the land?
This question started to emerge when I lived in a farm and meditation center in Georgetown, Texas a few years ago. And grew as I took on a role as a council member at Alma de Mujer Center for Social Change. It begged no immediate answer but several lived experiences. One of which was this visit to West Texas towns Alpine and Marfa in which I was intentional in my receptivity of inner and outer guidance.
I was listening, watching the edges of my inner experience interact with the edges of this outer experience, this landscape, this land. I observed the sun touch my skin. I watched the landscape in Alpine, Texas become frosted. I wandered. The long vistas in the desert reflected the vistas of my inner life.
I can only speak to what arose for me in this trip in context of highlighting the importance of the process. There is a richness and complexity yet simplicity that arises from sensing the texture of a question and interacting with it through my senses.
The definition of vulnerability (vulnerable), according to Merriam Webster is as follows
Definition of vulnerable
1: capable of being physically or emotionally wounded
My attraction here is the emotional wound. Vulnerability creates states of insecurity. What I'm curious about is the susceptibility, the helplessness and the letting go of control that vulnerability evokes. What is that wound we feel? Who are we afraid of? What are those thick shields? How do we become our own salves? I asked from the perspective of individual and collective experience.
At McDonald Observatory in Fort Davis I saw a crater on the moon through a telescope, I saw the Pleiades, and forgive me, I forgot the details, star dust related to a Pegasus:). On this trip each moment eternally collapsing into each other - part of the lived experience of ancientism and futurism - a term I'm investigating further as an ethos guiding my actions and work.
By valuing the landscape and resisting the tourist desire to consume an environment I honored "being" with the environment. I was able hear, feel, and experience questions that are part of my path, my purpose, my form of love.
There is a beauty in the luminosity of peripheral knowledge asking for your attention. So often couched in silence yet storming within a myriad of emotions - from restlessness and joy to enthusiasm and sadness. That peripheral knowledge? Its that edge of evolution. Growth is cultivated by lived inquiry.
Who are we? What do we want? Where is the evolution of the human species going? What is time?
The land's wisdom helped me change (and continues to) as we are not separate and if intentional about it - are in continuous dialogue. I touched the edges of knowing and evolved my sense of self through practicing deep listening and following through with my curiosities, uninhibited. To me evolve means coming into greater Love. It is a pursuit we must do as a species.
The Question as the Illumination
The imagery of the bell is helpful for me, as I sit in silence, seeing the individual and collective bells that are striking our hearts or are asking to be struck.
I've come to terms that this question, "what does it mean to be vulnerable with the land" as one of many inquiries for me to ride its crest into shorelines awaiting my arrival. And only to recede again, cyclical again and again over my lifetime.
I hope that for you, your questions become your guides.