Friday, December 02, 2005

Journeys

Despite the limited amount of travel I've done, I know that there are trips and there are journeys. The former is a jaunt from point A to point B. It might be filled with amusements, adventures and diversions, but a trip, regardless of the logistics, is a simple thing. The latter is much more involved. It's an inward venture as well as an outer one, and that makes it a sacrament, an outward and visible symbol of an inner, intangible grace. On a journey, I am transformed. I pass from one phase of life to another which is richer, both deeper and higher, and ultimately more meaningful.

I see life as a journey because I know how many changes I've gone through. Going from indulged but invisible suburban girl to the spiritual seeker who spills her life in a public venue has involved more than a passage of years. There have been elements of me that seemed important at one time that have simply been shed as outworn and unessential. Other parts were burned off in painful disillusionment. I know that part of me has experienced the miracle of alchemy.

The changes have all required time and many have involved geography. Experiencing a new environment and yourself in it opens your eyes. The unfamiliarity of the surroundings makes you seek the familiar in yourself. Then there is the miracle of the road. Part of any journey is just the process of movement. Anyone who's ever driven hours at a stretch knows that movement becomes monotonous. A brain can go on cruise control as easily as a car. you check your mirrors, your position and your speed with the strength of familiar routine. Many times, I've been surprised to find myself somewhere, oblivious to the miles I had passed. That's part of the miracle of the road to me. The changes happen as we're unaware, and then suddenly we see them. That gives me hope. As I'm caught up in the drudgery of just another day, on some level I know that something is happening that will result in a new and exciting place.

There's a trick to both trips and journeys, and that's the destination. On either, you can plan your course by beginning with where you want to be or by knowing where you are. Our culture applauds the planners who set goals and devise strategies to achieve them. I admire that, but I see its limitations. There's a certain pleasure in looking at where you are, deciding you have to make changes and then seeing where those changes lead you. I like surprises, and this way, I get a lot. Making one change can lead to another happening on its own. I can't always foresee the consequences of my actions, and that always gives me something else to do and change.

The thing that's surprised me about life's journey is that despite all the changes, the very core of me has remained intact. I've gotten road weary many times and rested. Then I found the truth in the saying that wherever you go, there you are. I think that the big changes in life are primarily about taking us back to our truest selves. For me that's the part that connects with God/dess. Wherever I go, as long as I know where that true north is, I can embrace what happens on the road.

The topic of journeys was suggested by Jodi.

4 Comments:

Blogger Globetrotter said...

This was an amazingly touching, accurate and deeply profound entry!

I sopped up your words of wisdom like crusty bread into a hearty stew! I'll be back for more!


Peace.
The Globetrotter

December 03, 2005 8:17 PM  
Blogger Spencer said...

I just had to comment on this. I so understand the journey and trip conundrum in life yet the destination is always the target. I have, at times, lost site of the destination and got off the road along the way. As those years passed it became easier for me to remain on the road. Facing so many of life's incidences has allowed me to see the target more clearer and as you did shed some of the non-essential elements I had formerly deemed important. In this, the late autumn of my life, I know what "is"important and what is dressing or fluff we delt with in younger days.

Appreciate your write, Cynthia, and always you appreciate you stopping by to share with me.

Many blessings
Spencer
http://spencersotherplace.blogspot.com

December 03, 2005 9:47 PM  
Blogger Wenda said...

Followed a comment you made elsewhere to get here and am so glad I did. I'm enjoying your writing and will be back. I also got lost exploring some of the blogs you read, so thanks for your wisdom and the entertainment.

December 04, 2005 3:10 AM  
Blogger Jod{i} said...

I love this...and you expressed it so well and was able to take those feelings and words give them a concrete base...beautiful!

Jodi

December 06, 2005 2:43 PM  

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