|Praying Beyond Now 20×16 Mixed Media|
In the past five years, I spent time in the Okanagan and Kamloops. Driving the highway into Merritt, you approach it from the south on a hill and the land in the valley welcomes you spaciously, openly. The first time I drove to visit family, I was overwhelmed by the beauty of the land. The First Nations from the Interior have and continue to honor the past, the present, and act for the ones yet to come.
The warriors who see beyond the oppression of now, beyond the suffering of today and yesterday, have a connection through the land to the supernatural. Thomas Merton (Spiritual Direction & Meditation) writes in the section, Manifestation of Conscience and Direction:
…we must be perfectly open and simple, without prejudices and without artificial theories about ourselves. We must learn to speak according to our own inner truth, as far as we can perceive it.
The ancestors have left us a way through purification ceremonies, and protocol, to pray beyond ourselves and the circumstances of now. By being one with the land, we learn to empty ourselves, to let go of desire that brings anguish, to be open to what the land has to say, the direction of the supernatural. This takes stillness, quietness, listening and honesty.