A PILGRIMAGE OF SERVICE, LEADERSHIP & ANCESTRY
Beginning June 2009, a small group of 8 leaders of different ages and backgrounds began a year-long journey around the world with a nature quest in the high desert of the Inyo Mountains in California, coming together to form a community with the intention and commitment to serve.
Following this solo time, we all joined to support a youth RITES OF PASSAGE IN NATURE. Their stories coming down from the mountain were true inspiration and confirmation of the power of Nature as teacher, of the lessons that we can receive from listening deeply to the world around us and to one another.
These six youth, and hundreds of our supporters, family members, and friends served as a long-distance base camp as we set off for a year-long pilgrimage to a number of places, programs and centers creatively exploring the frontiers of peaceful, regenerative culture. We also offered our hearts and hands at different reservations and indigenous peoples projects focused on reclamation of land and repair. While offering our service and skills, we focused on learning from and supporting those we met. We found many areas of collaboration and exchange, which we hoped would benefit the people and places we visited, as well as the many we will return to in the months and years to come.
Sustainable, holistic, regenerative… many adjectives today are attempting to describe a commitment that is in some ways very old and simple: to live in awareness of the generations to come, to live with care for the earth and all beings, to live with heart and truth, to live in remembrance of the gift that is to be shared. This is not religion or politics but common sense. It goes beyond definitions of class, culture or nation, beyond boundaries. The values of coexistence with all our relations are ones that need to be experienced, learned and practiced.
In whatever ways we could on the Beyond Boundaries pilgrimage, we wanted to bear witness, to join and support those living and working in this way. A year and thousands of miles later, we have gathered the stories, recorded the songs, and shared smiles and tears with hundreds of people working proactively to facilitate positive change for a healthy future for the Earth that we call home. We listened to the stories of celebration and struggle in areas of utopia and crisis, music to the ears and the ones hard to hear; and we bring them home to become part of our transformation. We believe that we have visited and become a part of the places where collaboration and partnerships can truly make a difference. We joined in the stories of success, survival, hope, sustainability, and new beginnings.
Our intention was to offer our simple time and labor along with the best of life practices and skills we know, as appropriate and as requested to do so. We opened ourselves to learn from others, and to deepen into a spectrum of cross-cultural community living. We went with the intention of being “part of,” strengthening the “morphogenetic field,” some call it “the matrix” of energies that supports all life, which seems to be so threatened in the instability of our time. Our task then became what it is still today – to incorporate the journey into our lives in numerous ways while supporting and inspiring others.