Peaceful Place Within

I am running through a forest; a mature forest filled with maple trees, beech trees with smooth grey bark, and birch trees with white papery bark that shines in the light.  The air is cool and fresh.  I am headed for the cliff; the wall of limestone that protects the valley.  I reach the face of the cliff, find the hidden crevice, and slip into the dark.  I begin my descent down rocky stairs that spiral into the earth.  My hands slide along rough walls on either side of the stairs to guide me through the dark.  I count the stairs in my head…1, 2, 3 … until I reach 20 and the floor of the cave. 

It is my cave; a place known to no one else but me.  My sacred place; a rock cave with woven blankets on the floor and flaming torches mounted on the walls.  I move through the cave to a doorway and place the palms of both hands firmly against the door.  An old woman emerges.  She is small with intense eyes and black hair that is bound in long braids that fall to her waist.  She picks me up under the arms and spins me around as if I were a small child.  As always, she is both thrilled to see me and mad that I have waited so long to visit.

She rushes me to a small room that is lit only by a small candle on the floor.  We sit on a woven blanket on either side of the candle; she in the east, the place of spirit, and me in the west, the place of the body.  In front of each of us are pipes with bowls carved out of stone and stems carved out of wood.  Together we fill our pipes; offering a prayer and pinch of tobacco to each of the eight directions and the centre of the wheel.  With each prayer, my consciousness drops deeper into my being; my mind grows quieter; and I touch the centre of my being.  I know my deepest longings and my greatest fears.  I am peaceful.  I am nothing and everything. 

After a little while, I will reverse my steps, close my pipe, hug my “grandmother” good-bye, come up the stairs counting backwards, run back through the woods in the daylight until I reach the parking lot.

This is a place in my mind; a place I can visit almost any time that I choose.  It is an exercise that I have been taught; one that I have fine-tuned and made my own over the years.  It brings me closer to myself.  It calms me.  It gives me peace.  So, why do I avoid it?  Why do I find it so hard to make time for this meditation?  Why do I allow so much time to pass between sessions?   Why do I fill my life with so much activity, so much work, so many distractions?  What am I afraid of?

About kp

I am a woman and a mother, a sister and a wife. I have called myself a socialist and a feminist, an environmentalist and an activist, a pagan and an atheist. But, at this stage in my life, none of these labels feel right. I am searching; trying to find an inner calm; trying to make peace with life's disappointments; trying to answer the big questions in my own small life.
This entry was posted in Healing & Compassion, Love of Nature, Signs, God & Universe, Simple Pleasures, Writing for your life and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Peaceful Place Within

  1. Hi Kim,
    What a beautiful form of meditation. It makes me want to find my own regular place and meet a beautiful guide!
    I wish we could talk to the Dalai Lama or Deepak Chopra–I’d ask the same questions. Jeff Brown, a self-actualizing man says, “Excessive analysis perpetuates emotional paralysis.” That’s true, but why the excessive analysis? In my case, the inner critic is the voice of my shadow self, the restless push to go or do something–anything but be quiet. Brown also says the desire to become fully conscious must be deeper, stronger, than the desires of the shadow self. But this is the age-old battle for the spiritual warrior. This struggle seems to be at the heart of the spiritual/self-actualizing path, as if the struggle is part of our DNA and we must want (or is it need?) to consciously connect more than we want/need anything else. One man once said to me, “The unknowing, the resistance IS the spiritual path. Embrace it.”
    I do miss having a meditation group–there is strength in numbers, especially when meditating.
    Take care, dear woman.

    • kp says:

      Hi Pam…I miss having a meditation group as well. It is such a wonderful feeling to do ceremony or meditation with a circle of people we feel connected to, and I find that that helps me keep up the practice of meditating on my own as well. Let’s keep reminding each other from a distance!!! Kp

  2. jazzminey says:

    Ah, I know this well. I too have a place I go. It is a grassy hill next to rolling surf. Horse greets me. Horse is always glad to see me. Now I wonder the same thing you do. Why don’t I make time for this when it brings me nothing but peace, joy, and even clarity on issues.

  3. Siannaphey says:

    This is so beautifully written that I can see and feel it :), thank you for sharing your sacred space with us all….much love and blessings

  4. Kate says:

    Thank you for sharing your experience of
    You with the world. You r not alone.

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