Sunday, May 01, 2011

Land Sakes, This is Living


I went out on a walk and to soak up some sun today in my little neighborhood. I live in what is considered the Mexican ghetto of Salt Lake. It's situated right on the west edge of downtown in a little area full of corner marts with exclusively Spanish words painted brightly on sides of buildings and adorable little Mexican children running through the streets. Teenagers sat on porches, all in dark shirts of similar color, staring, expressionless at me, the white girl, as I walked by. Old Latin men rode by on bikes, blowing kisses in the air and called out "bonita!" "beautiful lady". There was a cool breeze, only warmed by the rays hitting my face and arms and calves. Birds chirped and little chihuahuas barked. The mix of charming and dilapidated houses caught my eyes, all for different reasons and I realized I would miss this place, this little ghetto home of mine, nestled on the edge of the city. In my backyard I would miss watching my silly, fluffy chickens bob their little heads in search of worms and bugs. I would miss seeing them shake around in dust baths and chase each other. I would miss seeing the bunnies in my yard eating the grass with their cute little cheeks and cleaning their faces with their cute little paws. I would miss the teenage girls I've lead and who sometimes drop by my house. I would miss seeing the neighbor children come home from school. I would miss my painting room I never fully utilized. I would miss walking down the five city blocks to the farmers market in the summer and setting up my lemonade stand on Twilight nights.

And yet there's this call to adventure and a feeling inside I can't shake that I badly need a change. I need to get out and away from all the other stuff that goes with being in this place.

The walk was healing and beautiful, even with all the stares, dilapidation and poverty within this little ghetto of mine. Even the little grasses growing through the sidewalk cracks were all saying life finds a way to move forward.

I went to speak with a somewhat of a spiritual counselor yesterday. I sometimes go to his meditation groups on Wednesday nights (meaning I used to go regularly and I haven't been lately at all). I told him I felt compelled to move to San Francisco. I had not ever thought of that place until a random series of events and people in my life seemed to have come together all at once to get me to think about it. It really is odd when that happens.

So this spiritual counselor... He was raised new age, became a shaman and later found Christian mysticism (now his primary focus). He's had over 30 radical visions of the divine through daily meditation and prayer. He told me he has been so radiant before through his work that his smile to someone afflicted had cured their cancer. Did that happen? Who's to say. But if it did, that is a miracle. That is God moving through him. That is the radical and the divine mysticism which he devotes himself to.

His answer to me was that life is about change. Life is for living and exploring and if you are not in it then you're dead. He said I needed the openness of SF, that this place could suffocate me if I let it. We talked a lot about religion and spiritual growth, about my religious beliefs and where I am with that (shaky and puzzled as I ever tend to be). He was very open to listening to me and I was glad for it. I just needed a listening ear. Sometimes that's all you really need. We talked about being alive and about change and about why there are so many belief systems out there and how to grow within them and without them. He said I could do it all through meditation right here but that I should go where I feel compelled (even if I don't fully know why just yet).

He said to give my life over to God. I said I was afraid because that means change. He said that change is inevitable and God has a plan. I said I had a plan and didn't know if it lined up. He laughed.

So I went on a walk today to soak up the sun and to think about things and the walk showed me all this diversity and life and in that I got that I could be anywhere and experience radical change in an instant. But I do think God has a plan. God moves us and moves through us and we must perhaps move with that current, be open to that radical change or be dead inside.

1 comment:

Steve said...

Very cool. Life is about change, but there are two types. One where you must to live your life and one where you use it to escape life. One is healthy, one is not. It sounds like you are certainly doing the good version, if you decide that is what you need. And SF would be a cool place to live. But your walk showed you something important; life is all around us, the good, the bad, the ugly, and the so ugly it is beautiful. It doesn't matter where you are, that exists everywhere. But you change to broaden your life, not to find new life. After you've been enough places, you realize that the whole world is more or less the same thing with the same people trying to accomplish the same thing. No matter where you decide to put your roots, even temporarily, your life is only what you make of it. I look forward to still following along on your adventure! :)