Death Valley Walkabout ~ Wash at Emigrant Camp

Death Valley is the living image of God’s presence in absence.

In the vast open spaces of the desert there is evidence of wave upon wave, yet there is no water. Absence defines Death Valley – once an ocean of water, it’s now an ocean of space.

During my 7-day solo walkabout, surrounded by space and absence, I healed at the edge of the earth. I did Qigong. I yelled my death cries into the morning wash.

I chanted the psalms, I chanted the scripture, I prayed every morning to the Desert, and blessed everyone I met.

With loving kindness I began the process of stabilizing the wide open rawness of my broken heart. In the desert I began the shift from ‘I want love in my life; I need someone to love me’ to ‘I want love in my life; I am going to give love in every opportunity.’

According to Susan Priver, who wrote a book on The Wisdom of a Broken Heart, which examines heartbreak as the opportunity for spiritual transformation and deep love…

Being a lover is the only seat of power when it comes to love. Most of us think of ourselves as powerless when it comes to love. ‘If it happens, it does; if it goes away, you don’t know why.’ On the one hand, that is true, but there is one seat of true power. That is as a lover, someone who chooses to give love and not wait for love.

Since my heart-break  almost 3-months ago, I feel more compassion for the people I meet in my day-to-day life. I am thankful for this.  So today I chant along with Solomon, from the song of songs…

Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.
For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone;
The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land;
The fig tree puts forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell.
Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.

On Wednesday I start a 10-week course on mindfulness meditation to continue the work of stabilizing and nurturing an open and generous heart.

 Arise My Love, 1998, 56″ 60″ ~ commission based on the Song of Solomon, by Sherri Lynn Wood
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8 Responses to Death Valley Walkabout ~ Wash at Emigrant Camp

  1. Hi Sherri, I so enjoyed reading this post. I find myself in a similar place, even in the midst of the early years of a marriage. I find myself, trying to learn to let go, and be happy in uncertainty. I would love to do a stitching desert retreat with you sometime.xo

  2. Victor says:

    beautiful, insightful words to accompany the photos

  3. Heather says:

    xoxox You are a great teacher. Thank you for sharing your experience.

  4. Lynda M O says:

    Your writing brings me such joy, Sherrie, your openness and vulnerability shine from each word. May your heart’s light find its way into the open hearts and minds of others who will enrich you with their life and love; you have brought new memes to my existence; thank you.

  5. Jo says:

    Beautiful reflection. I wish you so much love – in all its forms – as you continue to crack open your heart chakra.

    P.s. If you haven’t heard of it already, I highly recommend James Baraz’s book and course “Awakening Joy”.

  6. LoriAngela says:

    Not everyone can take the amount of time away that it takes to reach into these matters. Thanks for bringing us along.

  7. Rosalyn says:

    Love the work…your beauty and grace are breathing through the broken places…believe all will be well, believe in a new day and a new you…
    Namaste

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