Thursday, February 25, 2010

"The Adventurers Vitamin 'I'....."

The Ancient Ones forever mused over the wonders within being in-spired: To breath in that which would keep us going... As Adventurers, we know about the importance of many kinds of sustenance, be it food, water, sunshine, even friends. Sustenance for the ephemeral kinds of endurance we need out there, would seem to be as much an essential element as any other; this 'inspiration' - this Vitamin 'I'.
What a critical substance for our wanderings, for discovering the meanings within the why we do what we do out there... I believe it is something we would seem to need daily. Do we not desire, even crave this on so many levels? Seeking inspiration in itself can become a wanderers dream, a pilgrimage of endless purpose...
There are so many avenues for inspiration. It is so very abundant. A few sources that fellow adventurers and I have evoked include: Simply getting out there, for the wild places themselves offer endless gifts that inspire, even take our breath away; within dreaming & vision questing; from others wonderful stories & experiences; images & memories; readings & quotations; and especially within those potent unexpected moments of serendipity & mystery we will most surely find ourselves in...
Such inspiration is truly a fundamental energy within motivation for setting out upon any path, an energy needed to understand all challenges, and an energy essential when wandering towards any chosen horizon...
What fuels; that which drives our enthusiasms is drawn from this well with no bottom...
Inspiration is an elemental energy that is indeed priceless, ageless, timeless, and boundless - and yet available to every one of us.....

Monday, February 22, 2010

"Just One Step Beyond..."

We never know what might be just one step beyond...
We may never see what may be reached for just past our last effort,
We might never realize what possibilities may be just out of sight,
We may never grasp what is just beyond what we think we know, a bit further away from what we believe to be fact,
We will never know, never see, never realize, nor grasp...
If we do not stay the course,
If we are not continuing to challenge perceived limitations,
If we will not allow ourselves to become all of who we could be out in the wild places...
We never know, if we don't go, that simple one step beyond...
My appreciation to T. Kennedy for the top image above, and to Wiley & Wales for the lower image.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

"A Trail With No End..."

The foundational creed of the upcoming Olympic Games reflects an essential belief that: "The goal is not to win, but to take part". To be immersed like this within the process of our adventures, is also to be on a wonderful journey about more than a destination...
Indeed, we do need a distinct kind of focus upon our adventure objectives as any athlete does.
Our eyes best be open and clearly set upon that elusive summit, and our efforts dedicated and consistent towards that distant shoreline. Yet, such elements of endurance are not only why we are there I believe... It would seem as important not to lose sight of the mountain for only the peak; it feels as significant not to lose touch with the river when churning among the rapids.
To be out there - to simply, profoundly, participate in our own way, is to be in concert with our personal dreams for adventure.
Outcomes, heights, times, distances, and totals, are useful measures yet can also be limited too if they are all we reach for. Maybe, most moments, just to take part in our wild place wanderings, is truly an award already won, a beautiful trail with no end...

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

"Symmetry, Summit Stones, And Sharing..."

"The butterfly's attractiveness derives not only from colors and symmetry... deeper motives contribute to it. We would not think them so beautiful... above all if they did not enact the mystery of metamorphosis; the latter assumes in our eyes the value of a message, a symbol, a sign...". P. Levi
Recently I received a wonderful gift from G.B. She wrote, about her experience of symmetry, Summit Stones, and sharing that: "One of your stones has been passed on. When I gave it away I explained how she could keep it for herself or pass it on by leaving it at a trail head or a summit just as you do. Her eyes got big as saucers as she exclaimed, 'Oh, I want to keep it!'.
Stone number one now rests on her meditation mantel with Buddha joined by some candles. Stone number two is on my desk at work with a few other rocks from the Eastern Sierra's and Ghost Ranch, New Mexico. Next to the stones is a small vase of yellow wild flowers with two Obata post cards hanging above. As far as passing it forward, here is where I find the symmetry delightful. While driving back to the Bay Area from Yosemite on New Year's Eve I stopped in Groveland and had some time to kill. Wandering on the back streets I entered into a small bookstore I've noticed before but had never visited. While poking around I ended up chatting with the owner. He had recently taken over the book store and sells mostly history and civil war books. He commented on how surprised he was that the locals come in all the time requesting poetry books and he didn't have many to offer. Upon arriving home I sent him five poetry books from my book shelves. I received summit stones from a poet with instructions to 'play it forward', which I did by passing on poetry books. Symmetry."
In response to G.B., I wrote:"I so enjoyed receiving your thoughts here, and have often pondered about the unknown symmetry that may take place as we embrace experiences and then pass them forward as you have done... There is a beauty in the spirit and actions of doing so, be they a small cobblestone, some cherished literature, or the simply profound quotes from those who have wandered before us... The person you now know from your gift to him will surely have enjoyed both object and gesture, and thus the spirit, the karma of it, and the beauty as you wrote in the symmetry of it all, as it gently keeps flowing on... Thank you so very much for sharing your experience of passing a Summit Stone forward and your friends' enjoyment of that. It also resonates with the few times I learn of how someone has positioned their own little cobblestone in a place of importance to them, with other memento's of personal symbolism like your flowers and Obata's pictures. Happy summits, trails, and sunsets..."

Wednesday, February 03, 2010


"I think that one of the lessons of climbing is perseverance, having a vision and continuing on in spite of obstacles, putting one foot in front of another steadily until you get to your goal. Learning that lesson in mountaineering helps you apply it to all other activities." A. Blum
Not a word, but a concept, a way of being, a way of living, that the wild places share with us and we continuously teach each other about time and time again...
My appreciation to M.Brown for the above persevering images.