Report from The Back 40 Part 3: Walking in The Great Forest Edition
Imagine standing on the east coast of America in 1500 B.C. peering into the vast hardwood forest that stretches out clear to the Tall Grass Prairie in the flatlands east of the great Rocky Mountains. You see a giant live oak, its long, strong, graceful, and gentle branches dipping down and offering a welcome respite. You lift yourself up into its arms and sit quietly.
Peering all around you, you take in the soft draping Spanish Mosses and the warm mists rising through the forest. You feel the soft but sure beat of raven feathers brush across your cheek as they wind through the surrounding leaves. Feel the soft breeze moving through the canopy and among the now dancing curtains of Spanish moss and oak leaves. Smell the moist soil, rich at the feet of this tree-being’s lifetime of composting and recycling nutrients over and over.
A part of you feels so at home, at peace, and at one. Here. Now. The way before lies wild, touched in only the most natural of ways – air, fire, water, earth – and is as deeply connected to the essence of who each of us is as it is to its own self. Imagine being at one with this wondrous live oak and this limitless expanse of woodland.
How many of the atoms of oxygen and hydrogen, through countless molecules of water, sugar, or other compounds taken in, incorporated, and then expelled to continue the cycle of renewal? How many plants and animals have these same atoms cycled through over the eons? And through all of them, how many have coursed through our veins in our short life?
How can we not feel a deep sense of connection to Oneness?