Spirit in the City

Finding the heart of Nature inside a city appeals to that compelling drive we have for integration.  We’re all about pulling opposites together (pulling everything together) into a single whole.

I remember a time when people thought you had to get away from the city to find your Spirit.  A few years back, I talked to a doctor friend after he came back from visiting a wilderness camp for troubled teens in the Arizona desert.  He was so moved by the experience.  He was so inspired, he was beaming!

And I asked him, “How can you create that spiritual experience in the city?”  The light in his face vanished.  He said, “It can’t be done.”

Well Doc, it really can.

Where can you find Spirit in a city?  The heart of Nature in a city is us.  The people.  We’re all different. Sometimes opposite. But we’re a single whole. And we can feel it.

Take Brendan Stanton, for example.  He’s the author of the New York Times bestseller, Humans of New York.  Over 10 million people follow his page on Facebook.  And he was recently sent on a 10 country “world tour” by the United Nations.

What does Brandon do?  He takes portraits and he listens to people’s stories.

Basically, he rings our humanity.  We relate. We resonate.  We discover that everybody, everywhere, from New York to Iran to the West Bank, is just like us. It’s all us.  And we’re so beautiful.

You see, I think the feeling of connection is a spiritual experience.  The bridges that bring us together.

It’s an oppressive myth to think that you have to get away, that you can only find God or Oneness or enlightenment in the mountains or the desert. Or that you have to be alone to find it.

Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of Aikido, said, “Heaven is right where you are standing.”

Rumi says, “There are a thousand ways to kneel and kiss the ground.  There are a thousand ways to go home again.”

Reach for the feeling.  Then leave a comment and tell us: How do you find Spirit in the City?


{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Francine L. Brown

    October 21, 2014, 7:21 pm

    I recently took a trip to Amsterdam and Paris.
    Being in a two cities that where foriegn to me, as well as the language and customs, I found it challenging to feel grounded through out the day.
    While I did not always feel connected during my visit, there were moments when connection would happen, help with directions, a cup of coffee at a cafe, playing drums together, being sung happy birthday from a group of strangers, being invited to share a meal, having a conversation where the other party takes the time to translate to for meaningful conversation. People are the heart of a city.

  • Susan

    October 22, 2014, 2:46 pm

    Thanks so much for your comment, Francine! I think it’s in the little things, the personal moments, that we make the connection with other people. Sounds like you had a beautiful trip! And a wonderful way to celebrate your birthday!!

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