In reality, this story began a long time ago, simply as a boy who was interested in nature, frogs, creeks, tadpoles, fish, stones, birds, feathers, grass, and of course dirt.
I was left to my own adventures a lot when I was young. The first adventures in nature were in Bothell, Washington. As the climate was so wet there, frogs could be found anywhere there was a bit of water. When i think back on those days, the wonder of nature still fills my nostrils….. Then there were summers in Kelowna, with grasshoppers and rocks, and orchards, and apricot trees….. and strawberries, and digging worms and fishing…… Again, those smells come back in complete rainbow of delight…. We moved to Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan when I was 4 years old, and it opened up a totally new world…. dry….. with lots of gophers and garter snakes, flat peyote cactus with its beautiful spring bloom, and the standing cactus with its bright yellow flowers…. hedges of caragana bushes, with their yellow snapdragon flowers and multitudes of honey bees to catch in any jar we could get our hands on. Lids were a must, as they were the trapper. Only need to get stung once, and we quickly perfected our methodology.
I became a rock hound very early, always carrying around my latest find, and passing them to friends.
I loved feathers, but never learned how to “use” them, even though I had close friends who were native Canadians, they never taught me how to “build” Indian stuff…….
Fast forward to many years later, where the layers and layers of “how life should be” began to peel off through diligent zazen, and the world of nature rushed back as if it had just simply been waiting for me to notice….. and to the present, where beading, and making Indian style “stuff” has become my true delight…. perhaps it could even become my “calling”.
Deep Nature, as i have come to describe it, is forever calling to us, calling us back to ourselves, to the self beyond “myself”…… the connecting which we lose along the way…. the connecting to the inner being…. to connection itself, as we let go of our sense of separation and fear…… it is there waiting for us…. our inner core….
And when the inner core “gets more time” in a day… when the bead moments of connection come more regularly…. more frequently….. when the things which had disrupted that connection begin to fall away…. simply being in that deep nature is already the answer to everything…… thinking of Gandhi, and how he found weaving and sewing… not as a means to and end, but that weaving and sewing were themselves the act of connection….. the expression of connection…..
So more and more it seems, rocks, feathers, branches, sea shells, leather, beads, stitching are like my link to nature, and in fact to my inner being……… well, that is a “base story” which all needs to be filled out with the whens whys and hows, as i have time….. 🙂