Saturday, December 1, 2012

Welcome to Adventuring Slowly!

A brick pattern, more fully known by my feet
than my eyes, marks the onset of my
morning walk to work
In this inch of infinite virtual space I tend to explore the tension between seeking and dwelling, searching out the unknown and resting in the familiar.  This desire for both adventure and home is primarily a personal quest, although I observe it in the culture and conversations that surround me with a distinct regularity. Planted within me is a spirit that quickens at the call of exploration and discovery.  Learning a new skill. Navigating through unfamiliar terrain. Nurturing young relationships.  Yet the constant companion of this adventurous spirit is an old soul who delights in predictability and the supposed mundane.  Recognizing the cracks in the sidewalk between home and work.  Being served my preferred drink at the bar before uttering a word. The chorus of "Amens" at the appropriate liturgical pauses.

Too often I have neglected either adventure or home in an infatuated pursuit of the other.  But perhaps the two can coexist?  Perhaps they even complement one another, spurring the other on to be more fully itself and more fully appreciated.  Maybe adventure strengthens home and home provides a context for adventure.

"Seeking enlightenment or the Promised Land or the way home, a man would go or be forced to go into the wilderness, measure himself against the Creation, recognize finally his true place within it, and thus be saved both from pride and from despair.  Seeing himself as a tiny member of a world he cannot comprehend or master or in any final sense possess, he cannot possibly think of himself as a god.  And by the same token, since he shares in, depends upon, and is graced by all of which he is a part, neither can he become a fiend; he cannot descend into the final despair of destructiveness.  Returning from the wilderness, he becomes a restorer of order, a preserver.  He sees the truth, recognizes his true heir, honors his forebears and his heritage, and gives his blessing to his successors.  He embodies the passing of human time, living and dying within the human limits of grief and joy." 
From The Body and the Earth by Wendell Berry
I invite you to join me as I embark on this adventure of seeking and dwelling!