Friday, October 30, 2015

The Desert (again)

“The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our own discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers.” M. Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled.

I wrote this awhile ago... years ago, when I first started working on The Desert curriculum. I stumbled on it again tonight, while re-reading theflotsam in my dropbox.

(Maybe it's time to start again)?

"Desert sand is unlike beach sand. On the beach, if you dig a few inches below the surface, your toes hit cool sand, sheltered from the sun. Smooth sea glass floats to the surface, and signs of life and death surround each step. In the desert, the sand is baked into hot slabs. Dry grasses poke towards the sky and cactus defend the little moisture they have found. Cracks crumble. Nothing moves. Where the ocean breathes rhythmically, the desert holds her breath.

Everyone spends time in the desert. You find yourself there, one day, awake and lost. Each day in the desert unwanted burdens and extra weight fall off. As it is said, “In learning, every day a new thing is added. In the practice of the Tao, every day, something is removed.” Films of people lost in the desert show them removing items that no longer serve as they’re no longer headed where they had planned. Eventually, everything falls away and they emerge a new person, or die trying.

Life has a desert, and we try desperately to stay away from it. We board the "education train" as children, and soon learn that if we get off of the mainline train, that we might step right into the heart of the desert. So we remain in the safety of the train car, unnumbered, with an unending line of cars both ahead and behind. 

We go to college, we go to graduate or medical school, and we get married and buy a house in the suburbs. When we wake one day, unexpectedly in the desert, we panic, we resist, and we try to go back to sleep. But once our eyes are opened, it is impossible to follow the monotonous, thoughtless steps that have kept us on the train for so long..."
desert road
LoveRoots Photography

Are you with me?

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