Wow….been a long time since I went walking in the early morning. Typically, I walk in the afternoons – just a bit before the schools let out. Sometimes, if I start too late, I’ll find myself walking along with kids from the local Elementary school. This morning, I decided to change things up a bit. Since I have two classes to each in the early afternoon – and another class in Fort Worth tonight….I decided to walk in the morning hours. Part of my usual walking routine gets thrown off because of the LARGE volume of cars going through to drop kids off at the school or heading out on their way to work. Crossing streets becomes a bit of a challenge.
Regardless of that – it was really nice to get outside prior to the sun being in a higher place in the sky. The air is somewhat cool. And there’s a lot more birds out and about prior to the potential afternoon heat-up. I’ve said it before – I don’t really need a “church” – I have the outdoors. Being outside provides me with the “pick-me-up” that I need — that moment of energy that makes me feel “connected” to my environment again. Its that one thing that keeps me going through the day and seems to allow me the capability to see everything in a much more positive light.
I know there’s folks out there that get that same feeling of energy from work with their various groups or through ritual/ceremony work. But that really doesn’t work for me. Granted it provides me with a good feeling of being around people who believe in a similar fashion — but its just not the same as walking out among the trees, hearing the birds singing their morning devotionals, and watching all the animals going through their morning routines of searching out some food. Walking through that as on observer, adding to that with the bits of bird seed that I drop along my walk (I keep a plastic baggie full of the stuff in my pocket) — that just adds so much more to my everyday life.
I’ve heard Christians talk about how “church” is an important aspect of their life. Its where they get their teachings on spirituality from their pastors. Its where they connect and affirm the spiritual Path that they have chosen with others on a similar Path. They speak of how the church feels like a “home” to them – a place where they not only feel comfortable, but also feel accepted. All of that works for them. None of that works for me. Not because its “their” church — that’s not my point. My church is the outdoors. The sermon happens each and every day — I live each moment of it. The lessons are all around me – and their meaning will become clear over time with patient observation on my part. Its nice to have others around to discuss some of the aspects of daily spirituality — but its not a necessary function for me.
So am I wrong in my approach to my beliefs? The way I look at the concepts of Spirituality in my life? Hardly. This is what my Spirituality looks like. Does that mean that folks who look for Spirituality through church (however you want to define that) or affirmation of their Path through communal interaction with others…that they are wrong? Again, hardly. That is what works for them. For me to force my own defining concepts of Spirituality on to others would be completely wrong. Just as it would be equally wrong for them to force their defining concepts of Spirituality on to me or anyone else for that matter. Human beings are a wonderfully adaptive lot. Even when a particular methodology doesn’t seem to work for one — there’s a fairly good chance that it will work for another.
To toss out other perspectives just because they don’t line up with my own — I find that to be somewhat foolish…and a topic for another time. In the meantime, there’s an empty coffee cup in front of me — and a hot pot of coffee downstairs calling for it…