For more than two years now, I’ve been writing The Sustainable Soul on an (almost) weekly basis. Before that, it was a weekly column on another website since 2007. Within these four years, I’ve also written a book on eco-spirituality with the same name as this blog. It’s been an exciting time, full of energy and the thrill of adding the word “author” to my bio.
But just as the natural world goes through cycles and seasons, so do people. We experience inner spiritual cycles of new growth, flowering, going to seed and rest. Cells that grow endlessly become cancer. Plants that spread without limits become invasive. People that strive and push themselves end up collapsing from the effort (physically, mentally or both!)
My life right now is full to bursting. I juggle my teaching duties (blogs don’t pay the bills), caring for my elderly parents and keeping up with my very busy teenagers, my community involvements, and trying to maintain some balance of physical health.
For several months now, I’ve felt a strong pull to turn inward, to direct my energy (as much of it as I can) to the inner spiritual life. Doing this, choosing to turn inward, goes against the grain of our busy-busy workaholic culture. As I write this, I am on a retreat/vacation and am spending a lot of time in inward-directed pursuits such as meditation in Nature. It feels almost decadent and illicit.
When I talked to my dad on the phone last night, he asked “what did you do today?” This was an innocent enough question, but the (unintended, I’m sure) implication was that there is a need to DO something, to accomplish something. I felt a twinge of culturally induced pressure to visit the sights of the area in order to check them off a tourist to-do list, to somehow justify my time spent away from my obligations at home.
This much I know: spiritual callings don’t just go away if you ignore them. Right now, I am called inward, and I ignore that magnetic pull at my peril. I am cutting back, trimming obligations, carving out snippets of solitude as best I can. I won’t be writing on a guaranteed weekly basis for the foreseeable future. I will drop in intermittently; write a little or a lot, with photo or without. No rules. The discipline of weekly blogging that has served me well these past four years has become restricting, binding in a way that it hasn’t been before now.
For now, I leave you with these thoughts. Listen to your heart. Listen to the Earth. Both are speaking to you. What is your calling at this moment in your life? How can you live it?
See you soon.
Photo Credit: “Winds of Change” courtesy of NASA at www.creativecommons.org