“When you dance, your purpose is not to get to a certain place on the floor.
It’s to enjoy each step along the way.” – Wayne Dyer
When I go out in the mornings, the last part of my walk has me heading due East. The walking trail is sprinkled with trees lining one side, and hilly residential backyards and empty lots on the other. At certain hours in the day, those same trees provide shade over half the trail and provides some shelter from the hot California sun. The sun is taking longer to come up now, and I know my early morning walks are soon to be packed away for the Winter. But I love to observe the changing of shadows and light that comes slowly over time. Spring transitions into Summer…Summer into Fall. And now, Fall is ready to yield into Winter.
One morning not long ago, as I came around a particular bend on my way home, I was absolutely blinded by the 8:00 a.m. sun. At that particular time and angle, it was hitting me full force in the face. I kept walking, eyes almost completely closed and gazing downwards through my lashes. I could only see about one to two steps in front of me at most, but since I’ve walked the trail so often, I just kept walking – feeling my way more than seeing it. The path is familiar, and I could see just enough to know that I was heading in the right direction and wouldn’t go two-wheeling off into the rough dirt. I ‘knew’ the trail was there, so I felt confident and at peace – even though my vision was almost completely obstructed.
As I walked, I began thinking about the interesting dynamic of having so much Light in front of me vs. having it behind me – like when I walk in the evenings. What a difference that makes! With the light behind me, the walk is easier, cooler and I can see clearly – at least, for a time. A small shadow is cast in front of me, and as I walk, that shadow goes along….lengthening in front of me as the sun lowers in the sky. The shadows around me begin to grow as well, closing in on me. What initially began as an easy walk becomes a more speculative walk into shadowy darkness, as the sun sets behind me and I lose the light completely.
When I walk full face into the sun, however, the shadows are all behind me. On this particular morning, I was enchanted with the fact that if I held my eyes almost closed, I could still just see the where I was going to step next. And it so perfectly symbolized this spiritual journey that I’m walking.
I have a definite idea about where I want to go, and how I want to end up. I also know that there are multitudes of paths that get ‘there’, and sometimes I speculate on which path to take that will continue to take me in the direction of the Light. At times, all I know to do is to put one foot in front of the other, and keep moving. Keep moving and believing that the next step will be revealed to me. And the next. And the next. And that I won’t end up falling into a ditch or tangled up in the bushes.
This particular morning, When the Light is very bright, my sight was so minimized that I was left depending on my other senses more. I could feel when the power and the strength of The Sun was hitting me square on, so I could make minor adjustments to keep moving directly towards it. Even with eyes closed, I knew which way to go because there was light breaking through my lids. I could ‘see’ without seeing that I was going the right way. It guided me with a light from within, behind my eyes.
There were no shadows there. It wasn’t the ‘dark’ blinding me, it was the Light. It’s brightness was prohibiting me from seeing more than just step or so at a time. It was a walk of faith, born from desire to keep moving and to stay out of the shadows. I felt some familiarity with the path, and yet I surrendered my need to see exactly every step I’m going to take. I knew to keep walking towards the East. Towards the Light. Because that is where Home is waiting for me.
And I always get there – to exactly where I want to be – taking just one step at a time, enjoying the scenery along the way.