The River of Time: A Meditation

The care of the Earth is our most ancient and most worthy,
and after all our most pleasing responsibility. To cherish
what remains of it and to foster its renewal is our only hope.

– Wendell Berry

As you begin to read this blog, I invite you to slow down, quiet your breathing, and imagine yourself standing in a small clearing beside a river. At your back is a thick, pine forest. In front of you is a gently sloping bank of sand and small stones leading toward the edge of a shallow, swiftly flowing river. The river is wide, but not too wide to cross to the other side, where another narrow clearing is backed by tall pines climbing up the slope of a mountainous ridge. It is summer, so the river’s water is not the swift, icy cold torrent of mountain snowmelt. Rather, it is the cool, refreshing runoff fed by recent rains on the nearby mountains.

Now, I invite you to shift your perspective,  and imagine the river is the flow of time. As such, this River of Time contains within its unending flow all of the billions of years of evolution leading to this, your particular moment in the history of our evolving Earth and Universe. As you stand there beside the river, in this, your moment in time, upstream from your position the river stretches back unseen through the forest for eons to its mysterious, yet undeniable, source. In the opposite direction, downstream from where you stand, the swirling water moves swiftly toward an unseen future far beyond the small slice of horizon just visible to you through a gap cut by the river in the surrounding forest.

Next, imagine yourself making a decision to step forward and make your way down the small embankment. You then reach the water’s edge and begin to move into the river from the point at which you stand. As you do so, I invite you to consider these questions: What will you find there within that wide, endlessly flowing River of Time? What will become of you as you allow its water to enfold you? What effect will your presence bring into the river, entering it as who you now are?

Now, as you stand within the River of Time, take a few minutes to stay with the image of your body held within it; imagine what you feel there standing in its cool, flowing water. What do you see within the water that pushes against your sides as it makes its way around you? What thoughts come to you about the river?

When you are ready, I invite you to take a few minutes to write these feelings, thoughts and images down.

If you would like to read my thoughts on stepping into the River of Time, click here.

Creating  Your Own Journey Through the Currents and Questions

As you read the material on this site, I invite you to consider the currents of change in your own life journey, to reflect on where they have brought you, and where they might be leading you at this point in your life. Your active pondering might take the form of journaling, or a creative activity such as photography, poetry, or even the creation of a video.

Here now are some questions to start your reflection:

            What in this post reminds you of your own experience?

            What surprises or excites you?

            What challenges you?

            What seems unclear to you?

            What can you add to what is in the post from your own experience?

            What one step could you take starting today to move forward on your evolution?

This material also is on a separate page in the “Resources” tab under “Finding Your Own Voice.”

Go Gently on Your Journey

A note of caution as you begin to explore this site: reading the material on this site may prompt you to change your approach to many things in life.  I decided to write my story motivated by the assumption that we all must change or we ourselves will not survive the devastation we are inflicting upon our Earth.

That said, I also must say that this process, like all of Life’s processes, takes place over time at a rate unique to each individual.  I invite you to honor and reverence that process for yourself.  Let it unfold as gently and miraculously as the opening of a rose.  It cannot be forced, but it also cannot be stopped, as long as Life remains.

Most importantly, I want you to remember to trust your own experience.  It doesn’t have to be the same as mine.  I am pleased to invite you to open yourself up to my thoughts and ideas, but caution you to take in what you need or find helpful, and leave the rest.

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