~ from cats, dogs and nature to the flowering of body, mind and spirit ~

Friday, August 15, 2014

Red Desert

As I continue seeking a deeper understanding of not only the Sonoran Desert, but of myself in relation to the element of fire and of desert in its larger meaning and presentation, the book Red: Passion and Patience in the Desert by Terry Tempest Williams, though grounded in her multi-generational heritage among the rocky canyons of southwest Utah, provides perspective and inspires me to greater courage.

Different parts of our vast United States evoke varied considerations, and Williams' book brings forth an honoring of and reflection upon Mother Earth's diversity. One that stimulates us not to see our planet just for what we can get from it physically -- food and water -- but how our soul is nourished in unexpected ways through its fierce wildness as well.

"As the world becomes more crowded and corroded by consumption and capitalism, this landscape of minimalism will take on greater significance, reminding us through its blood red grandeur just how essential wild country is to our psychology, how precious the desert is to the soul of America."

I remember driving through Zion National Park on vacation with my parents forty years ago, and I can still recall the awe with which we viewed the red rocks. I will visit this place again.

"There is a resonance of humility that has evolved with the earth. It is best retrieved in solitude amidst the stillness of days in the desert."

I am looking forward to winter so that I can gather my courage and walk alone into the desert of West Saguaro National Park. I want to be within the desert, in solitude and silence, and hear a different voice, feel a rhythm unfamiliar.

"I believe we need wilderness in order to be more complete human beings, to not be fearful of the animals that we are … "


  1. Lovely morning sky and mountain silhouette! I'm looking forward to cooler weather as well. :)

  2. I've never been in a desert -- I can only imagine how it would challenge all one's perceptions and awaken previously untapped spiritual resources -- Christianity, Islam, and Judaism all sprang from the desert.


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