Sunday, January 2, 2011

Day 2 How heavy is your backpack?

The Contrary Way
30 Day Inspirational Guide to the Journey back to yourself.

Day 2 How heavy is your backpack?

Most of us don't think we walk around life with weight on our backs. As a pilgrim, I learned very quickly that the heavier your backpack is, the more difficult the journey will be...unless of course you are Wonder Woman. One only needs to carry the basic necessities because it is a simple life. The problem is we are so conditioned to consider safety, security and inconvenience. We can't let our children out of the house without a cell phone. We can't legally drive our car without a spare tire. We believe if we leave lights on outside and inside the house when we are away that no one will break in. We need 600 cable channels to satisfy the needs of everyone in the household.

A pilgrims life isn't that complicated.

Think of your backpack as a metphor for what you carry on your life journey. What is necessary and what can be left behind? Think of the emotional weight. If we have less weight to carry, then it might be possible to free up some energy to concentrate on what is absolutely imperative for our journey. It's also a way we can force ourselves to trust if there is something we don't have, it will be provided.

It was my eighth time on the Camino so I thought I knew a thing or two about what to carry. It was the end of May and the weather was only going to get warmer. I decided to send some of my warm clothes home so my pack only weighed 8 kilos. As soon as I did that the weather turned wet and cold. At night I was shivering in my sleeping bag liner. Sometimes there were extra blankets but usually the pilgrim who arrived at the refugios early, snatched all of them. I had to resort to going into the lost and found box to borrow some clothes. They appeared to be freshly washed. I found a long sleeve white tshirt and some purple (my favourite color) track pants. I wore these clothes for the next 10 days and then left them in the lost and found box in another pilgrim hostel.

The Native people have an approach to nature that I've tried to apply to my life: We should only take from the land what we absolutely need and return what we don't use.

What are you carrying on your life journey?

Tomorrow is about wearing comfortable shoes?


Love and light,

Love and light,SueAuthor of Canadian best-selling book My Camino presently in development as a feature film.www.suekenney.caFacebook My Camino/SuseyaTwitter CaminoPeregrina

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