The Distant Hill, Under Our Feet

April 20, 2011 Leave a comment

A Walk

My eyes already touch the sunny hill,

Going far ahead of the road I have begun.

So we are grasped by what we cannot grasp;

It has its inner light, even from a distance —

And changes us, even if we do not reach it,

Into something else, which, hardly sensing it, we already are;

A gesture waves us on, answering our own wave . . .

But what we feel is the wind in our faces.

-Rainer Maria Rilke

The older I get, the more I think I understand these words by Rilke.  We have probably all heard someone say that it is not the destination that matters, but the journey.  Of course, it isn’t an either/or but rather a both/and. And I am more and more convinced that the distant hill we seek and the road we are on are not so separated by geography and time as we often think.  There is something instantaneous that changes when we set our eyes ahead and allow ourselves to be grasped by a bold and authentic vision of what could be.  It’s a kind of quantum entanglement – the possibility of inhabiting that sunny world we seek now, in even the smallest of ways.  Against the winds that threaten to keep us in place, there are forces and voices that lend their energy and support to “be the change” – faith, values, history, community, nature.  I am grateful for the reminder to tune in to what is subtle and sublime that keeps us nimbly on the edge of things and not falling for what is purely mundane and business as usual.

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