Awake my Soul


*The post below talks about my experiences on the 3-day ‘Pilgrimage for Unity’ from September 14-17, where I walked 48 miles from Ghost Ranch to Chimayo, with about 28 other pilgrims who accompanied me on the journey.*

“Awake, Awake the light has come. Awake, Awake my Soul.”

It was during that chilly New Mexico morning, when all the pilgrims were huddled together in a semi-circle while facing the cross that stood before the steadily rising sun; when all people joined their voices together in song and sung prayers of the morning; when I looked around to faces made up of many stories and walks of life, yet somehow connected together in this very moment; when I gave my complete trust to this moment and these people, knowing that Love has brought us together; I felt “I” drop to the earth and “we” take its place within my heart.

In this moment, my soul awoke and rose with the Sun.

“I arise today in the strength of the mighty Creator; in the strength of the rising Savior; in the strength of the life giving Spirit; in the strength of the mighty three whose Love is One. I arise today in the strength of the angels and archangels; in the strength of the prophets and all Ancestors; in the strength of Mother Mary and Jesus Christ. I arise today in the strength of Heaven and Earth; in the strength of Sun and Moon; in the strength of Fire and Wind.”

Because of our humanness, we feel the physical sensations of pain that call our minds to address what is causing such discomfort. My body and mind felt this suffering after four hours of continuous walking alongside a desert highway, in which I felt “I” slip away, again, into the earth, and this time replaced by a question: “Where is my strength coming from, really?” It was during this time when the above poem came alive in my mind, body, and soul. I recited this poem in my mind for the remainder of the pilgrimage. Never before had my ego been so humbled and quieted by an experience.

This lesson of strength I learned was one of those ‘deep soul’ lessons. You know, like the ones you will never forget, because somehow, coming from deep within your bones, the lesson is already known to you. You just needed a reminder to pay attention.

“Traveler, Traveler there is no road. You make the road by walking.”

As we walked through neighborhoods and on sides of roads where sidewalks proved nonexistent, a fellow traveler named Sylvia started to hum this above phrase under her breath, where I then joined in her singing, until eventually we had created a call and response tune within the entire congregation of travelers. The physical experience of walking through terrain created by God for all to walk on, yet socially constructed against walking on by foot with busy roads, fences, and impatient cars, brought this phrase to life within my soul in an alternative way.

This experience metaphors choices one must make in life of action versus inaction and, no matter how seemingly impossible or ‘road-less’ a choice may seem to follow; no matter how many obstacles seem placed in your way; if your choice is coming from God, or a place of Truth within yourself; if you get that gut instinct reaction to an idea or action planted in your mind, you must follow your inner knowing and pave your own road through ‘walking’ or moving forward, knowing that these places are where you belong.

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