In Luke Larson’s book “Keeping Company with Saint Ignatius”, he opened my eyes to the beauty of an unscripted walk. Unlike my busy work day that has goals, objectives and agendas, a walk is unselfconscious. I have always viewed a walk as a quick supplemental form of fitness. It has not been until recently that I have experienced the satisfaction of a walk. A true walk, one that has no measurable out comes or planning involved.
The newness of these walks is rewarding. Can I say I’m finding consolation during these treks, not yet, but I have my moments. Recently it was the brightness of the stars after a quick glance upwards. But the most consistent feeling of consolation is when the bells are tolling at Thompson Memorial Chapel on the Williams College campus during a walk. If I’m lucky they will be playing one of my favorites, “The Mountains” or Amazing Grace”.
In Mary Oliver’s “Messenger” she reminds us that our basic work in life is “learning to be astonished” at the beauty around us. The challenge lies in changing those quick glances up towards the stars to longer moments of nothing.