Hello. Today I want to tell you how the Ride for Peace and Justice is going so far for me personally. I also want to share the best ways to follow along.
It seems the case with everything in life that the manifestation of an idea is not terribly commensurate with the predictions beforehand. At least in my experience things turn out to be more complex, more profound, more difficult, and more helpful than we could have imagined. Twelve days and four hundred miles into my ride I can say that such has been the case for me. The physical part has been easy and much as I expected, but I’ve experienced emotional ups and downs of a size that I haven’t seen in a long while. I’ve crawled way out on a limb with this ride and my heart is deeply involved; as I might have predicted, conditioned mind has jumped all over it in an attempt to take the inherent joy and possibility away from me. I’m happy to report however that, though it caused some impressive turbulence as I glided through New Mexico, and though it came up with some clever tricks, the rascal has not succeeded and I feel more sure and determined than ever before. I have loved the process, in fact, despite the pain of it at times. It has been incredibly helpful in showing me my way.
One thing I”ve realized is that this trip is much more about receiving than giving for me. I feel I have something valuable to offer, and I want to provide it as best I can as I go along, but the bit of clarity I possess can’t possibly match what I’m given every day. People are so beautiful, and so good. Even the simplest interactions I’m having affect me: they teach me to love and let go. The more involved conversations and the stories I hear teach me more particularly, as they cause me to reflect upon my own life and how I’m living it. I am also receiving tremendously from the regular silence and the simplicity of my journey. This time reminds me of being at the monastery in some ways. Without the troubles and the distractions of a regular worldly life I’m more able to keep my attention on the body, the emotions, the mind, and on Life as it manifests moment by moment. I love practicing in this way and it is a great privilege, I know, to have this space to retreat and just be. I’m eating it up every day.
There is a place I adore where service and my own individual practice come together. The fundamental message of the ride is “Be what you want the world to be”. I want the world to be a place that supports awareness, self-compassion, kindness, and peace. In order for the world to change in this direction we must each untangle ourselves from the self-sabotaging, self-hating processes of the mind that express themselves outwardly as the violence and prejudice of our circumstantial world. That’s what I want, and clearly the best way to bring this possibility into the world is to practice it myself. Here, as the old adage says, “the journey and the destination are the same.” I serve by being my authentic self. Isn’t that wonderful? This is the fundamental opportunity, I believe, that lies before us all.
Follow along if you feel moved to. I am still experimenting and figuring out how best to provide avenues for people to participate along with me as I go, but at least for now the best way to follow the ride itself is through the normal social media channels. I am putting the same content on instagram (theoneopendoor), twitter (@theoneopendoor) and facebook (The One Open Door). There you will find lots of photos, micro-blogs, as well as logistical updates on the ride. I am no longer going to put updates on the ride at the end of blog posts. I’m planning on using the blog platform for more involved stories of people and events, thoughts that occur as I’m pedaling along, as well as information about spiritual practice in general that has nothing specifically to do with my current adventure. If you like the blogs you can subscribe to the website (theoneopendoor.org) to get them delivered via email as I publish them. Feel free to contact me any time through the website or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) with questions, concerns, ideas, or just to have a meaningful chat.
Take good care of yourself, friend. May you have good fortune on your own journey.