Pilgrim Path

This blog is the work of a seeker and poet. Walking stick in hand, I head out into the world, not of the world, but in the world. My words and my friends carry me along and light the pilgrim path of spiritual journeys.

Monday, June 30, 2008


I never intended to let a week lapse between posts. The old Windows 98 desktop bit the dust at the same time that the firewall at work went up. So this comes to you from a bright shiny new Toshiba notebook...


“My heart sings…”

The road north from Albuquerque to Santa Fe provides some incredible views as the landscape gradually changes with the elevation, transporting you to a completely new place physically and spiritually. During the hour long drive, the scenery manages to seep into your soul. The word is terribly misused nowadays, but it’s most appropriate to use it here – you are filled with “awe.”

Christ in the Desert Monastery is in Abiquiu which is another hour’s drive north of Santa Fe. During my most recent retreat with Rose, we had the start of our conversation about restlessness during the drive along this stretch of road. Mentally, I was preparing myself for the start of this retreat. In the process, I recalled some prior trips with Rose. I was curious about something that seemed out of character for her. I suppose this is as good a place as any to mention that Rose is an introvert and I am an extrovert – yet another point of contrast between us. I mention this because it may be at the root of my difficulty in understanding our differences.

The closer we came to arriving at the monastery, the more I thought about raising an issue with Rose that would impact our time together. On past retreats, I’ve been surprised by the frequency of Rose’s desire to leave the monastery for the day, whether to visit some nearby site of significance, or even just to get a current newspaper. As an introvert, I would expect that Rose would be content to stay at the monastery and block out the secular world. On the other hand, I am happy to confine my activities to the monastery grounds. I guess Rose might wonder about an extrovert who wants to stay away from people.

I foresaw this difference in our characters as a potential source of stress during our stay, so I wanted to get the issue on the table. While driving to Abiquiu, I mentioned my curiosity about this to Rose. I’m not sure, in retrospect, whether Rose or I attached the label “restlessness.” What ensued was a conversation that continued over the course of several days.

(to be continued…)

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