Tolerance – the ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular, the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with. (Google)
In the sanctuary of the woods, the trail holds no prejudices. Nature doesn’t care about your religious, spiritual, political, ethical, cultural beliefs or any other personal values that you believe to hold true. Nature is non-judging and neutral, and its purpose and desire are to deliver us to our center and guide us to personal serenity with its gracious beauty, refreshing smells, and soothing sounds of simplicity. I typically don’t write stories on such “sensitive” subjects as personal beliefs, which I now see as being driven by one’s own ego and prejudices. So I won’t, as I too once held beliefs strongly within my ego. What I will speak to is my newly found guidance to transform and to unlearn what I’ve learned in life so that I can view life afresh an anew. This is a daily, heck, hourly challenge indeed.
In a world that now lives and works 24/7/365, and then some, we’ve been conditioned to think that if you’re not moving at the speed of light then you’re simply going to be left behind in today’s society. The interference of noise from politicians, actors, athletes, social media, podcast, books, news, TV and so forth has only driven us further away from tolerance, compassion, and understanding. Today, it seems to be unacceptable to be neutral, open-minded, or to live with tolerance and understanding. We seem to be pushed by society to pick a side, move fast, then flaunt our decisions with little regard to others and to win at any and all cost. If you don’t, then you may be considered weak, unfocused, or undriven. We’ve become a society so quick to judge and to be judged, without tolerance.
I’m now learning to find the courage to embrace the unknowns and to seek guidance with empathy and understanding. With courage, I’ll slow my life down from the falling sands of time that have quickly filled the bottom of the hourglass of my own existence. Sands that have collected a life’s worth of beliefs and values that have molded me over time. Now awakened, I will work to cast these beliefs aside and to welcome the remaining sands of time in which to explore life without ego and judgment. To strive to live with tolerance, be more open minded, and share a loving heart with all. Simply put, I desire to live, love, and laugh more along this journey, and seek to inspire others to live more and worry less.
I truly believe that I’ve been guided to this awakening through many events in my life that led me on this new journey. To say that one has seen it all is to say there is nothing left to learn, a foolish statement indeed. My new path is to share with all what I’ve learned, the good, the bad, the funny, the sad, and to live open and free from judgment in the hopes to inspire others to do the same. With now just under five months left before I step onto the Appalachian Trail at Springer Mountain, GA to fulfill my dream to hike 2190 miles and to summit Mt. Katahdin, ME, with each step I will carry all of you in my heart. So get ready, it’s going to be a wild hike. A.T. 3-31-19 Be_again.