When the Holy is Under Our Feet!

Our mission at the Wild Resiliency Institute is to “nourish inspirations and strategies from nature for thriving in turbulent times.” We work with individuals and organizations toward that end, through our coaching, consulting, training, resiliency research, Learning Journey Adventures and Take-a-Hike! programs.

Yes, we provide these services for the financial rewards; the deeper rewards are those that come from the lives that are touched and renewed, from people and organizations re-membering that they already stand upon holy ground.

We’ve recently completed, in service of this, our annual Aspen’s Ancient Wisdom free public presentation Aspen Goldand a charity fund raiser Aspen Hike for the Fyera Foundation. Below are a couple of unsolicited comments from Aspen Hike participants.

I am in a place I have not been before.

Can I stay, or must I go?

The beauty is ethereal. The silence is deep.

Is this for real?

What prevented me from being here (or there) before?

I know the answers: The Dollars;

I never had time; I lacked imagination;

I liked hotels better; Whatever.

I will go, but I will return.

‘Next year – not in Jerusalem’ –

but instead in Pecos Forest –

with Larry, of course – so I can return.

— Andrew Weinstein

“To tell you in words how much the Aspen Hike meant to my spirit,my eyes and heart is difficult. I’ve not written before now because… I was speechless. No words seemed adequate/ right/ enough to convey what I felt and feel. Now I have a new vision, memory, to hold onto when I begin to meditate or want to relax or just be in that moment…. Oh Larry, it was a holy moment, the entire day!” — Cathy Barber

What strikes me in these comments is this: When we realize that we are indeed standing upon holy ground, in that is the experience of our own holiness as well. And that is one path to our wild resiliency.

The poet David Whyte articulates this beautifully in a poem from his book, Crossing the Unknown Sea.


That day I saw beneath dark clouds
the passing light over the water
and I heard the voice of the world speak out,

I knew then, as I had before,
life is no passing memory of what has been
nor the remaining pages in a great book
waiting to be read.

It is the opening of eyes long closed.

It is the vision of far-off things
seen for the silence they hold.

It is the heart after years
of secret conversing
speaking out loud in the clear air.

It is Moses in the desert
fallen to his knees before the lit bush.

It is the man throwing away his shoes
as if to enter heaven
and finding himself astonished,
opened at last,
fallen in love with solid ground.

1 Comment

  1. Tom Wojick

    11/09/2009 at 7:13 pm

    Congratulations Larry, the comments from the hikers made me think of a poem I once read and had to retrieve after reading your blog. I feel it speaks to your comment about holiness:
    Listen more often
    To things than to beings;
    The fire’s voice is heard
    Hear the voice of water.
    Hear in the wind
    The bush sob:
    It is the ancestors’ breath.
    Those who died have never left,
    They are in the brightening shadow;
    The dead are not under earth,
    They are in the rustling tree,
    They are in the groaning woods,
    They are in the flowing water,
    They are in the still water,
    They are in the hut, they are in the crowd:
    Th dead are not dead.
    Listen more often
    To things than to beings;
    The fire’s voice is heard,
    Hear the voice of water.
    Hear the wind
    The bush sob:
    It is the ancestors’ breath,
    The breath of dead ancestors
    Who have not left,
    Who are not under earth,
    Who are not dead.
    Those who died have never left,
    They are in the women’s breast,
    They are in the wailing child
    And in the kindling firebrand.
    The dead are not under earth,
    They are in the fire dying down,
    They are in the moaning rock,
    They are in the crying grass,
    They are in the forest, they are in the home:
    The dead are not dead.
    Birago Diop, a Senegalese writer

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