May we learn to return and rest in the beauty of animal being, learn to lean low, leave our locked minds, and with freed senses feel the earth breathing with us.
The tribal peoples, living so intimately with the earth and the other creatures, held them to be of great importance, to be sacred, and they saw the spirit of the tribe in that intimate connection. Therefore they understood they were not only relatives in a tribe that must care for each other, but also relatives of the earth and all its inhabitants, with a responsibility also to care for them.
Landscape has a huge, pre-human memory. It precedes everything that we know. Everything depends of course on whether you think landscape is dead matter or whether you think it is a living presence.
I think there is life in these rocks and in these great mountains around about us, and because there is life, there is memory. The more you live among mountains like this, the more aware you become of the cadences of the place and the subtlety of the place, it presence and personality.
There is a tradition we have for people with such a longing (for the sacred and holy) to go away from the man-made world for a time. Leaving human society with all its connections and admonitions. Leaving family and friends, teachers and studies, work and ambition, leaving all roles, all stress, to be alone in the purely natural world.
At first we may feel like an observer in that place, a visitor, a stranger in this world. When we really get to know it we begin to feel at home there. We are related to all this, to everything in Creation.
We understand that we belong. We see then that the Creation is one great web. All is in relationship, and it all works together. Everything in this web has its part. Everything is equal and important to the whole. This is part of what we mean when we say everything is sacred and holy.
Judith – firstname.lastname@example.org