Archive for January, 2015

Inner Nature


When my dog, Z, was only six months old, she came to our family Thanksgiving celebration. My sister-in-law’s sister (is there an official title for such a relative?) asked me what training method I used with Z. Taken aback, I was at a loss for a response because I had no training technique. Not having an answer gave me that “less-than” feeling, as it seemed I should have a system for training my dog. Z was 90 pounds at that point and I wanted her to be well liked by one and all. Yet, it is not in my nature to enforce an agenda on someone else—human or animal. Having been stunned by this inconsequential question, it stuck with me for days. Mulling it around, I began to recognize that I do have a training approach; I spend tons of quality time with my animals. Four-legged animals don’t use a vocal vocabulary, they communicate silently. Essentially, so do we. The words humans vocalize is estimated to be only 10% of their communication—body language, unspoken intention, and inflection making up the other 90%. Point is, by being together, Z and I have learned to understand each other beyond words. We both pick up nonverbal cues for what is acceptable, without consciously “training” the other. This allows me to speak to her only as a reinforcement of what she already senses. Although not infallible, in my opinion, so far this works for us. She is now 2.5 years old and remains a delightful dog and friend to be around. Most of the time, any way.

Having begun my spiritual search some time in my teens, it has been my way for the majority of this life. Over the years, I continually wanted a teacher to help me. I went to workshops, lectures, and read countless books looking for one. While most interested and inspired me, none felt like the one teacher I had been seeking. I continued my self-study consisting mostly of time in the company of trees and animals, listening and writing. While doing so, I have heard many things within. When a thought has truth, my body has a certain feel about it—a tingling or vibration. It’s as though my bones know veracity. Even so, I continued to look for someone else to teach me. Only now, after years of searching, do I see that I was given a teacher the moment I asked for one. That teacher was me.

These two stories may seem unrelated. Yet, both are examples of finding, claiming and trusting in my own nature. I have a rich inner life. Even so, at times I search outwardly for answers—turning to people, books or methods to show me the way. It turns out that their ideas are only helpful tools to use in finding my own path. This is true for all of us, even those who find a particular method or teacher to follow. We have reached a time when prophecies have predicted great transition. The vital and simple question I ask you is; do you listen to and also follow your inner rhythm and teacher? If not, decide what it would take to change that and do it. For what the world needs is not more copies of what already exists, but people who are fulfilling their individual role in the whole. It is in this way we will remember humans do not have dominion over the world, but are instead an integral part of the earth.

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