“Do you love yourself enough to listen with the ears of your heart to the other voices of yourself speaking?” – Beno Kennedy
Ansel Adams once wrote in a letter about an adventure into the heart of the wilderness that “All was nought but nirvana.” The wilderness has an uncanny way of permeating every part of your being by uncovering the layers of civilization’s residues that plaque the daily routines of the human experience.
Maybe it is the expansive scenery, the calm atmosphere, or the inherent serenity of the space that soothes the mind and draws one into a greater awareness of what life really is. In all of its wonder and beauty, the wilderness brings humans back to their roots–a return to where life resides, a place without asphalt–a place with a different agenda.
The wilderness silently proclaims a heralding call beckoning all that rest upon her surface to feel awe and get lost in the vastness of it all, to slow down and recline away from the stresses of day-to-day glowing rectangles and the fires at work. In the pristine realm of nature you can just be–far from the soulless mechanisms of clocks, cars, and the city’s incessant hum – outside the realm of pixels and binary logic.
In wilderness is the preservation of the spirit; for there it is earth, sky, and beating heart in sheer naked contact with planetary and bodily rhythms. The wilderness calls us to play in the dirt, for there is nothing else to do, for there is nothing that needs to be done but be reminded of who we are.
In a world when time for reflection is rare, in the company of wild nature, you can find your essence and bring it into your days with you. We know the transformative power of the wilderness intrinsically here at Reboot. Jerry’s Vision Quest, led by our own Jim Marsden and Jade Sherer, whom you’ll meet on this special episode of the podcast, was a pivotal moment for him. (In fact, it’s Jerry who cries in this episode.) So when our heart started beating fast and our palms got sweaty as we talked about designing a Vision-Quest-type-Bootcamp, we leaned.
Vision Quests are an ancient pan-cultural art and ceremony. A journey like this leads to more-human human-beings. And, we know those are the kinds of human beings that make better leaders. They are the ones that send ripples through their families, companies, clients, and communities.
When you’re heart starts beating fast, it’s a call to do it anyway–the other side of that is glorious. Fear and trembling are integral to transitions. It’s at once a beckoning to something new and the discomfort of not knowing what that will bring. Even in the discomfort is a raw and powerful feeling, there’s something good to be found in stripping away the things that give us comfort and getting down to the raw essence of life in the wilderness. In the increasing feeling of aliveness around and within you, you can find a different rhythm and perspective on life. With the stars, you can consider the questions that haunt you, be present for the new insights that come to you, and see what it’s time to let go of or what newness is emerging. It shifts everything.