Here is a journey I make each day. Time flows on this side of eternity. I have aged as gracefully as reasonable as can be be expected, and yet feel not a day older in my mind. As I begin a life in the Smoky Mountains I hope you will share my journey as well. Now, everybody runs, but back when I started, it was still sort of unusual. People called it jogging. They wore sweatbands. Guys wore really short shorts. I owned a Goretex suit of a shiny silver material that I wore in winter, a coat and pants. I probably looked like a Martian. But it was fun.
In its fullest sense, pilgrimage entails a long journey in search of qualities of moral or spiritual significance, a journey across both outer physical and inner spiritual landscapes. Pilgrims separate themselves from home and familiars, maybe joining a group of like-minded seekers and wearing special clothes or other marks to indicate their pilgrim status. The pilgrimage journey offers a fluid and imaginative space between the everyday and the eternal, a liminal zone between body and soul, heaven and Earth, humanity and divinity. For it is not easy to move across the boundaries between these worlds when locked in the familiarity of the everyday.
In ecology, there is the notion of the ‘indicator species’, a canary in the coal mine of sorts, the animal or vegetable most sensitive to change, which, when present, indicates a healthy ecosystem. Conversely, when this species becomes suddenly absent, it’s often an early indicator of a declining or failing ecosystem.
The Blue Mountains, 50-120kms west of Sydney, is 26 small townships within 1000 square kilometres of World Heritage listed National Park. This blog has photographs and musings from living and walking in the Blue Mountains, Australia. My refuge from the city.
As the community puts away their skis and snowboards and gets ready biking season, Blue will be screening Bikes vs. Cars, a film that highlights the positive impact communities can have when they support alternative transportation. A fitting film to raise funds in support of the Environment Network’s program which aims to curb driving habits and instead find greener ways of getting around.