While running from myself…

My walk – this journey.

Has been perilous at times, had I known that danger lurked at every turn, perhaps I would have been inclined to conduct myself differently.

Sulphur Bank trail in Hawaii.

Sulfur Bank trail in Hawaii.

I’ve learned that life is consistently inconsistent.

 

And until I realized that I was challenging life, instead of studying at its feet and gleaning the lessons that I was being peppered with.

Sauntering in Calvert Cliffs State Park

Sauntering in Calvert Cliffs State Park

I wandered about aimlessly, searching… Looking for my path.

But –

I did what was safe, as I stood deafened by the sound of monotony.

Turkey Neck Lighthouse - Elk Neck State Park

Turkey Neck Lighthouse – Elk Neck State Park

I knew that something was missing and I ran like Jonah because it beckoned.  Ignoring it, because fear overwhelmed and governed my actions.

On the shores of North Point State Park

On the shores of North Point State Park

I waited for a sign, but there was no thunderous voice from the clouds to guide me.

I directed my screams, my animus towards the heavens…

Beckoning…

God, Lord, Yahweh, Abba, Father, Mother, Jesus, divine omnipotence!”

I pleaded…

And often the tears streamed down my face…

Like hot lava, they burned, wiping them away only for them to return with a vengeance.

I demanded for my portion of grace to be dispensed…

And I waited.

Somewhere on the Atlantic.

Somewhere on the Atlantic.

Somewhere floating on the Atlantic.

Somewhere floating on the Atlantic.

Eventually, I tripped…

Into a chasm of humility – and I fell headlong into silence.

On the Patapsco River

On the Patapsco River

I was bewildered – as I tried to make sense of it, the answers eluded me.

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Gunpowder Falls

Wandering in the Patapsco

I wasn’t lost… But, in the same breath, I didn’t know where I was.

My burdens left me, but I longed for them, simply because I was acclimated to them.

I was drunk, intoxicated with…

Making my way to the Ocean in Calvert Cliffs...

Making my way to the Ocean in Calvert Cliffs…

Solace.

So I did the only thing I could do…

The thunderous voice was the sweet sound of solace.

The thunderous voice was the sweet sound of solace.

Now… I run towards it.

I bathe in the silence, it is my commune. The stench, the static from the world that I escape from is lost, if only for a couple of hours.

Being made whole is… Priceless.

On the coast of Hawaii.

On the coast of the Chesapeake.

The lushness of the Big Island.

The lushness of the Big Island.

God speaks loudly… Through the proverbial bullhorn of solace…

Pausing... To savor.

Cascade Falls.

Cascade Falls.

I can hear clearly, now.

God doesn’t have to shout, because whispering is enough.”

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The quest to elude insanity

Being overwhelmed only requires a modicum of participation from its host, but I prefer not to go down without a fight.

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I walk until I lose that which plaques me… 

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I saunter along until I find that which has eluded me…

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And I sit until I’ve gotten my fill. Empowered, cleansed and ready to face a world of consistent inconsistency.

Being made whole

I have had the privilege to travel the world and the benefit to experience the duality of solace and empowerment.

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I’ve learned that being still, is often the most logical course of action.

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Each time… 

I’ve stood at the juncture of the places, these bodies of water. My pride, vanity and the like was washed away.

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And I was made whole with humility.

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And it is a drug like no other.

Staying true to the focus

Everything that has its start in insignificance.

Runs the risk and indignity of being taken for granted.

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Walking along Grays Creek in Calvert Cliffs State Park in Maryland

But…

Staying true to the foundations of what we are. Allows for exponential growth that can and will boggle the mind.

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Continuing along Grays Creek.

Accusations of not being majestic enough must fall on deaf ears, if we are to persevere.

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The Creek turns into a bog...

Listening to the echoes of self expands the boundaries of what we thought we knew…

Teaching us that we know nothing. Thusly, we grow, gaining in power and influence.

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The Creek finds its beauty

When the clarity hits, we are like the torrential current of a stream. Who, what and why would anything dare to deny?

Our undeniable majesty and power, that was there all along. The only tool needed to expose it… Patience.

The metaphors I encountered on Stone Mountain

In retrospect I didn’t know what I was getting into. I had been wearing a knee sleeve for the past week and the knee was feeling better than it had in a while.

And I couldn’t wrap my head around missing out on a opportunity that was within my grasp.

Georgia’s Stone Mountain was mine for the taking…

So, like I do with any park that I have in my sights… I walked.

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I saw the warnings, but I openly scoffed at them.

Closing myself off from the world that I am walking from is a metaphor of sorts as each time is different than the last.

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Such is life…

Often we encounter something ugly that would leave us inclined to turn around and head in the opposite direction.

Seeing the Confederate flag waving in the wind stirred something inside of me, the ugliness and the subjugation that it personified left my face twisted in a permanent sneer of sorts.

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The digust melted away as I looked at what laid ahead. I grinned broadly and scampered up the mountainside.

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As I moved on the incline seemed to steepen, the sweat began to sting my eyes. As continued on I found myself drinking heavily from the water that I had packed in my bag.

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Just as it seemed I was getting closer the farther it seemed to be. Maybe the writing was on the wall and I was oblivious to the message that was being conferred.

But… I wasn’t alone, there was a number of people pressing on just as I was.

I watched and procured power from their efforts.

Such is life..

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I reached a point when I saw the last stretch of my journey, it was a steep climb up to the top and I couldn’t deny the audible wheezing that masqueraded as my breathing.

I collapsed on a rock and took in the shade while gulping down a mouthful of water taking care not to waste a drop.

I looked through the branches at the sun beating down on my skin and thought that I was going to appreciate reaching the top more than I initially expected.

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After about 8-10 minutes of questioning my resolve, I got up and forged ahead. Holding onto the rail tightly as I pulled myself up.

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The overlook was tempting, but I stayed on the path.

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So many people engrossed in the effort.

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Reaching the top…

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Now I had to contend with losing my breath because of the awe inspiring beauty that comes with being 1,686 feet above it all.

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I was a little closer to the peace of mind that I always find myself searching for on these walks.

It is a exercise in consistency as I never doubt the presence of God because it is enveloping and all encompassing.

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I entertained the thought of taking the cable car down, but I decided against it.

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I reclined underneath a outcrop of trees and let the solace marinate as I always do.

Visiting Mother and letting her talk

When Mother Nature opens her door she doesn’t care if you wipe your feet or not, she just wants you to feel better than you did when you came in.

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Everything is in order, her interior decorating skills are without equal.

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If she tells you to pull up a seat, you pull up a seat. Respect your elders.

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The stories have no words but they are the most riveting that I’ve ever heard. She is so engaging,  that I lose track of time.

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She sends me off… Not before telling me to ignore the snake on the ground and to come back soon.

Oh Mother.

Calling a time out

I never really started the process of finding myself, until I truly listened.

I walk, unburdened and with a presence of mind that is indescribable, as words fail to encompass the peace that envelops me.

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Patapsco Valley State Park

Any excursion where I am able to absorb the majesty of a waterfall, is a segue into another realm of solace that I didn’t know existed.

Each one is different, every experience has a different frequency.

These waters have a baptismal power that is invigorating.

I suffer from migraines, but they don’t exist here.

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At the base of the Falls

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Overlook at paradise.

My visit to Hawaii consisted of me smiling for an entire week. I was empowered for the entire visit, being surrounded by water… That is unadulterated power and I was infected.

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I was lost, but I didn’t care.

Often, I journey alone because of this innate need to detox and be selfish. When I am alone in the confines of solitude, I operate on a higher plane.

Unlocking freedom and elements of my sanity on an incremental basis.

Closing my eyes, breathing deeply I often wonder…

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Herring Run flowing into the Back River

Is this a drug?
Am an addict?

But the presence of God says otherwise and I immediately know it to be true.