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It’s a journey not just a destination


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It’s a journey not just a destination

active ethnic kid running on street

Have you ever gone on a walk with a baby before?  If you have, you will notice that there is a massive difference between when a baby is walking and when an adult is walking. We see babies every day, so it should be obvious, right? But have you noticed that babies walk without a destination in mind and thus they are not limited in their minds about how much time it takes to get to a place called “there”? I think it’s a pretty simple logic for their young minds that, since there is no destination in mind and no conscious concept of time, they, therefore, walk along their path, not as beings going towards a destination but as seekers of new experiences within the time-frame of their walk. So, as they walk, they stop to pick things, touch things, play with sand, and pull at things here and there to fulfill their daily quota of curiosity. It’s a very beautiful thing to watch if you are patient enough to do so.

I like taking my two-year-old son for walks to the beach, or just around the forest neighborhood. He loves the white beach sand and wastes no time bathing himself in it, leaving me all alert so he does not get sand in his eyes. He is not in a hurry to get anywhere fast. He stops to pick a stone from the ground, plucks a leaf or leaves which he calls “flower”, and picks a stick or something else. And a simple five-minute walk to the beach from our place may end up lasting twenty minutes or more. It always fascinates me why he or every baby you see does the same thing. The last time we went on a walk to the beach, he was busy picking stones, talking to the leaves, pulling at some grasses along the way, and enjoying his connection with everything while I, on the other hand, was busy trying to make him focus on the walk and get to the beach quickly. Then it hit me. The journey is the walk, not the destination.

The fact remains that, technically speaking, the destination or the place called “there” will always remain the same but the journey to “there” is never the same because it carries within it new inspirations, new ideas, new thoughts, and new things. But it made sense.

Once we got to the beach, after playing in the sand for like ten minutes, he wanted to go back home. As we started to leave, he turned and said bye-bye water ..bye-bye trees …bye-bye shell, even as we walked away. What that means to me is that even though where we were standing was a destination for me as a mature person, to him it’s still part of the journey, and not saying goodbye to the new things he met on his journey would mean not having paid attention to the fact that all things are connected, not as a beginning or end, but as a journey…a part of a whole.

This little drama with my son did impress deeply in my mind the meaning of life, that is, the wholesome connection between all things seen and unseen. So, to me, there is a destination called a beach that we were journeying to but to him, the walk was the journey and everything he needed to learn within that time frame of walking, he did so through the interaction which he made by speaking to the trees and leaves, picking up stones and pouring beach sand on himself, etc.

From his baby (babies are adults dwelling in inexperienced bodies) perspective, he had no limitation of connection to the various things his eyes could see, even if he had no name for all the things he interacted with or what to call the connection between himself and them. But this is the truth about living or life on earth. There is really no end just as there is nothing in a straight line and neither is the beginning the beginning. The reality of God or the Divine also is not a static existence somewhere in the clouds with lots of European-looking men with long white beards and sage-like faces seated around a throne. It’s a wholeness wrapped in many dimensions of existence within existence. Which is why the invisible essence of God is found in all created things. This means that when my two-year-old son takes his time to touch, speak to, and interact with created things on his walk to the beach, which is another created thing, he is actually having a “Whole” conversation and interaction with the Divine. And when he says bye-bye to everything he interacts with, he actually perceives them as living and relatable entities worthy of his greetings. But if there is no end, how come we die?

Death is also not an end in itself but what you might call a changing room experience where the physical, mortal clothing is removed to reveal the immortal, which does not need physical clothing. It is the intersection of several dimensional movements which appear in the physical as beginnings and endings. But it’s all a cycle within a cycle and there is no end to it in the real sense. Which is why life is really not a straight line but a circle. Every straight line must come to an end at some point but a circle just continues within itself.

Our daily lives

Even in marriage, there are those who come into marriage with the false assumption that marriage is the destination of their union. So, the moment they get married, and or have children, they become dead weights that can’t be moved to aspire for other things. But there is nothing love cannot heal.

Personally, among other things, I see love as the embrace and the manifestation of purpose. Meaning that when Jesus said, “he who obeys my commands is he who loves Me”, He was not talking about foolish obedience based on the inability to think, like religious people like to insinuate. He was painting a picture that says, “You love me when you give attention to my purpose even as you carry out your own purpose”. And this is also applicable to every form of relationship. Humans, animals, and even plants gravitate towards those who give meaning to their purpose. In the case of married couples, cracks will begin to manifest the moment both of them or either of them start to see their marriage as the destination and are no longer giving attention to their collective or individual purpose and the journey of that purpose.

The truth is, within every human being, male or female, there is a deep desire to fulfill purpose. It’s just natural. And because purpose and the fulfillment of purpose are how we connect and also give our love to the whole, whoever or whatever stands as a hindrance to the fulfillment of that innate purpose becomes the target of our resentment. And that’s why when babies have made up their minds that they are going towards a direction or the target of their desire, they can bite you or even show how displeased they are with you for trying to stop them.

But what does it all mean for an adult in the journey of life? It means we must pay attention to why nature is never in a hurry. It means slow down and breathe. We need to understand that the Universal Mind from which all things, even nature, emanate knows that time and space are illusions. They don’t exist. As humans, we get into real trouble when we try to push nature to answer to our microwave mindset of “it’s now or never”.

So, in a world where everyone has been conditioned to follow trends, you be the guy who goes off tangent to reveal the new that no one has seen before. But that will require you to understand how to be different and also slow down to truly see, hear, and understand like a child.

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