My friends know that for years, I have resisted the idea of camping…I don’t want to upset anyone by saying this, but there are no concierges in the woods…which was a concern of mine, but I decided to push past my fear of that, of being in a tent, being dragged to the woods by a pack of rabid raccoons, catching the scurvy and the host of other fears that have kept me from experiencing nature more deeply. Those who really know me understand that I follow an eclectic path to spirituality, acknowledging a creator but understanding firmly that I walk in and work in this world.
The opportunity came to combine these dual natures in a single event. A camping experience as well as a spiritual retreat called Between the Worlds; a week long gathering of similar minds and souls for revelry, communion, learning and brotherhood.
It is terribly difficult for me to translate the experience into words other than it was transformative on a physical, emotional and even metaphysical level for me. I strengthened bonds with my current friends and made new ones I hope I will have for the rest of my life. I proved to myself that I could be self-sufficient, interact with others who are like minded and embrace aspects of myself I have long suppressed.
For my traditional Jewish nature, this type of event couldn’t come at a better time. As we approach the high holy days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur we analyze our life, our choices and our direction for the next year. My more earthy side also acknowledges the ending of one year and the beginning of the next with the Autumnal equinox and Samhain. With this convergence of annual events comes the reaffirmation of my commitment to nature, the land and earth based energy I work with. I am definitely refueled to work with my garden, produce yummy food and good medicine for myself and those I care about!
I am slowly re-entering the world but the memories of this week are passing through my mind and my heart and filling it with warm light and energy.
Blessed Be and Happy Gardening!