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Posted by Michael Finkelstein | September 20th, 2017

Majesty Shrouded In Mystery

I think I was 11 years old when I first saw a Redwood Tree. Walking within the eerie primordial mist of Muir Woods, just outside of San Francisco, I was struck by something more awesome than anything I had previously seen or experienced. The forest itself was breathtakingly beautiful, but there was an element of something far more profound. As I stood beneath one of the towering giants, peering up as far as I could strain my eyes to see, lost in the shroud of mist was an element of the mystery made real. I remember shaking, crying within, and knowing then and there that I was in a special place….no, not Muir Woods, but life itself.

In the 45 years since, I’ve returned to that forest on numerous occasions, and have travelled up and down the California coast seeking other representatives of the majesty. Last week, I had another such opportunity and I was reminded once again of the gratitude I feel to have the privilege now and again to touch these trees, the pillaring elders, who bear witness with grace and dignity and inspiring strength and tolerance, even as we fumble through our own evolutionary process. Last week, amid the coincidental destructive forces of fires, hurricanes and earthquakes, I wondered what they must be feeling. I actually put my head to one of the giants hoping to gain some insight. I’ll let you know if anything shows up. For now, though, I just felt like I needed to share the story – perhaps to bring a ray of hope during these troubling times. Indeed, when I stand amidst these token symbols of the magic of creation, I feel somewhat reassured that the powers of the life-giving forces that birthed these beings has a plan for the restoration of wholeness for us all.

Mitakuye Oyasin,

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