Tag Archives: spring

Renewal

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“There is meaning in every journey that is unknown to the traveler.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Springtime and Easter bring thoughts of renewal as nature–and, perhaps, men–leave the often misunderstood darkness of Winter. That this brings many of us a reaffirmation of our spirituality, regardless of the name of our religion, cannot be doubted. Or, perhaps if can be doubted, but for many of us renewal is as natural as the seasons.

Symbols of renewal. Wikipedia Photo

Carl Jung, in his Red Book, referred to the spirit of the times as a force or set of forces that drew men into the temporal clutches of popular thinking. We often lose confidence in ourselves because the spirit of the times often seems so chaotic, fragile, focused on expedient ends, and sometimes predicts that one kind of doom or another is all the future holds.

It’s hard to ignore the spirit of the times because it’s our common currency. Yet, it sows doubt and can lead us to believe that renewal is something for another time eons into the future or am experience many steps or miles away from wherever we appear to be stuck at the moment.

The spirit of the depths, as Jung called it, appears as madness and insanity to those trying to live “properly” within the consensus spirit of the times. Yet that spirit contains all the great truths, everything that can be known about the cosmos and the Creator behind it and within it. We’re afraid of it and believe its truths are beyond us. So, we often speak of our spiritual journey as a lifetime or multi-lifetime trip. We look for destinations that “matter” and “steps that seem important” and experiences that seem to hold the keys to transformation. It’s vain to think otherwise, we believe, because the spirit of the times continues to lead us to believe that important goals take years to accomplish, and who are we to find the creator in a moment?

And yet, I cannot help but think that spiritual renewal–unlike the clock-like cycle of the seasons–has no timetable. Perhaps we rush hither and yon without grasping how we are changing and why we are going one place or another. While Springtime and Easter remind us of renewal, I rather think it’s always an eye blink away–whenever we’re ready. There’s no hurry: we’re ready when we’re ready, though it seems that we deny how close it may be by brainwashing ourselves to think it’s far away.

Like the “force” in Star Wars, it’s with us always. We’ll hear it better if we can tune out the loud and clamoring voices around us that tempt us to follow one fad or political party or spiritual journey of the moment.  That’s when we finally grasp that we’re already at the place where we’ve been going.

–Malcolm

Springtime means trying to start the lawn mower

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During the cold, wet, seemingly endless winter when more people than not are discontent, dreams focus on springtime and sitting in the sun and leaving the windows open.

First sign of lawn mowing season.

First sign of lawn mowing season.

I think about the lawn mower.

Later on I think about hot Georgia afternoons and start looking for the first signs of autumn’s more civilized weather. After my wife and I finished planting six more flowering trees, we wandered over to the riding mower out of curiosity.

It started on the first try, bless its heart.

Now that we’ve started the lawn mower, the grass has suddenly gotten the idea that it should grow like there’s no tomorrow. I know there’s going to be a tomorrow: I saw it in the weather forecast which said, “Warmer temps just perfect for lawn mowing.”

Now the grass looks like we’ve never bothered to mow it and in a rural area where people often use combines to cut trim their front yards, it gets kind of hard to go outside during the day time in the grass is tall enough to bale.

Naturally all the gasoline cans were empty. They’re full now and the car smells like the BP station.

I’m almost ready to sit on my riding mower with an ice bold beer in the cup holder and dream of snow and old man winter.

–Malcolm

AtSeaBookCoverMalcolm R. Campbell’s navy novel “At Sea” is free on Kindle March 18, 19 and 20.