Often the journey to a more conscious life is begun through talking to people and reading books with intriguing concepts which draw one forward, wanting to know more. The path is reinforced by walking it with others where there is a sense of common ground and comradeship.
This sense of community is gratifying and important, and is a little bit like the setting up of a base camp at the bottom of the mountain one intends to climb. The planning is good, sharing maps is good, packing the backpack full of supplies is good, but the real journey begins when the first foot is actually planted on the mountain.
Climbing the mountain is the only way to find out what it is to apply those principles in your life. What does that look like? What does it feel like? What are the results? What do you do when you are alone on the side of mountain in the dark? What about wild animals? What about lightening? You may sit shivering for some time, afraid to go on, and desperately unsure. But sooner or later, you do go on. And each time you do, you get stronger and you learn something.
This journey feels frightening because it is, by definition, always unknown. It is much easier to stay in the base camp and keep reading the books. But nothing else has the deep sense of satisfaction that climbing the mountain has, and the learning is qualitatively different. There are many “aha moments” which happen when you are reading the books, but the true change only happens when you live what you are reading.
“You have to leave the city of your comfort, and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you will discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover will be yourself.”
~ Alan Alda