For some time know I’ve had the feeling of being at a threshold. In my journal last month I wrote: It is time to enter “The Forest” again, “The Dark Forest” – the Unknown – to go deeper into the Unknown; an indefinable space.
As I meditated on this I heard the still small Voice within unexpectedly say: “How serious are you?” “How willing are you to enter the Unknown?” Whoa…
“The Forest” traditionally is a threshold symbol of entering the unknown, the deeper nature, or the spiritual world. In fairy tales it usually represents a passage through difficulties and an opportunity for “transformation” of some kind. I also see it as a sanctuary, refuge, a place of deepening. This entering the “Dark Forest” happens sometimes when I have lost (intentionally or otherwise) the framework which gives structure to my life, when I must find my own way, and be true to the call of Self. Shamans, poets, holy men and women sought refuge in the forest, as a healing place. Going into The Forest represents a return to the Primordial Self – beyond societal, cultural, conceptual and spiritual frameworks. In a way, it is like returning to the child’s heart of innocence - just following the longings of the Heart once again; trusting that I will emerge from "The Dark Forest" with clarity. As a child I often went into the forest next to our house as a place to just sit, to listen and commune with nature, and write poetry. It was a place of experiencing Awareness directly, although back then I called it “God.”
And, since I don’t have a “Dark Forest” handy, and I am spooked by things that go bump in the night, my Forest will have to be the space of Silent Awareness within – navigating the inner Forest of the Unknown – as well as the unknown practicalities of everyday living… In my imagination it is not a “Dark Forest” however. I see a forest filled with tall, white, straight, pole trees that look like birch or aspens – reaching up through the sky. It is not dark, but light here, and the sense of silence and quiet is palpable. My body begins to relax in this Silent Forest. I can feel its depth, its spaciousness, its welcoming… It’s a beautiful space, this Silent Forest, a vast awareness and aliveness live here. And I am drawn into it…
I am willing, I say inwardly, in answer to the Inner Voice, to enter the Unknown – the Forest – to trust Intuition to take me through. I am ready to step over the threshold and see where the Unknown takes me, while also navigating the matrix of practical realities of every day living… Care to join me :) Are you willing...
“The familiar horizon has been outgrown;
the old concepts, ideals,
and emotional patterns no longer fit.
The time for the passing of a threshold
is at hand.”
“Midway upon the journey of life
I found myself within a forest dark,
for the straightforward pathway
had been lost…”
“Sometimes you have to step into
the void and trust
that the ground will appear.”
Bottom Photo: Calendar page from 2004
You may want to read The Pathless Path post
for more context