“The earth speaks, but only to those who can hear with their hearts.  It speaks in a thousand, thousand small ways, but like our lovers and families and friends, it oftens ends its messages without words.  For you see, the earth speaks in the language of love.  Its voice is in the shape of a new leaf, the feel of a water-worn stone, the color of evening sky, the smell of summer rain, the sound of the night wind.”  ~  Steve Van Matre, The Earth Speaks

Becoming reverent may have something to do with being still and silent, though walking has its benefits too, as Barry Kulenga reminds us: “We learn from walking, treading the earth. Each step is a heartbeat, pulsing the lifeblood of our community.  We have no aspirations apart from living what life and its mysteries teach us.”

At some point, the earlier in life the better, ceremony could be introduced.  Paul Welsh writes, “Through meditation and ritual, we can allow our spiritual imagination to celebrate a joyful reunion in the presence of the divine that is all around us.”

Outdoor ceremonies can take the natural world out of the ordinary, transforming it to its true station of extraordinary.  By candlelight or sun, story-telling and magic may be woven into the woods walk, the special spot by the water’s edge, or during a campfire — outdoor adventures focusing on discovery, surprise and the treasures of peer to peer interaction.

Once reverence is somehow achieved, then what? I suppose that there are monks and hermits who have reached  a state of reverence, but today’s deteriorating world cannot afford to have people who care about the earth living in isolation.  We need more Reverence Teachers and Role Models.

The world’s great prophets received their mystical calling when in the wilderness.  All returned to the civilized world to spread their message of hope and renewal.  Following their lead, seek a kinship with living things by going to a wild place and soaking in its healing balm.  Yet, don’t go alone and please share with us what you learn upon your return. ~

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