(I have edited this since first posting it, including changing its title).

For a long time I’ve been going to a special place in the woods by a mountain stream. There, over many visits, I go through the various meditations I have learned from don Americo, including one of the simplest: ‘Go to a place in nature, open up your energy, connect to that place, still your internal dialog, and just be there, not-doing.’ I also–on an intermittent basis–practice as I take my walk some of the meditations I have learned from Eckhart Tolle; to become completely present in the now, to become aware of my own presence, to be aware of being the Being who is experiencing the world. Tolle also speaks of the great benefit of being totally present in a beautiful spot in nature as a way to experience who we really are.

I follow this path because at some deep level it resonates in beauty within me, just below the threshold of hearing my heart sings, even my intellect smiles and says “I don’t understand what is going on but I like it'”. This keeps me going, even though for me the momentous moments on the path are few and far between.

The other day I was sitting by the stream with my close friends who are walking this salka path with me. It was one of those internal dialog days where my mind just doesn’t seem to want to shut up its chattering and let more of who I am inform my experience. We went through a couple of internal-dialog-stopping meditations, and when we finished my internal dialog was quieter, but still nattering on. As we sat and chatted for a while by the stream I found myself withdrawing from the conversation. I was feeling such a strong desire to connect with the river and with the trees on the other side and with the cliff that towers up behind them. As I let my energy, my filaments, connect to the Nature around me my internal dialog faded away. Then for a brief moment my experience shifted in a way that is beyond words, but led to me exclaiming to myself (imagine a tone of fond affection and pleasant delight), “Oh…there I am!”.

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