The image of a winding path depicts a journey. A path must go somewhere; doesn’t it? A winding trail begins and it usually ends at some point. Is this true; most people would say “yes”. However this is not necessarily correct when we refer to life. We literally take hundreds, perhaps thousands of journeys down a winding road every day. These are both in the form of mental and physical paths. But are we truly going anywhere? Or are we always there where we began each journey?
The winding road to somewhere really leads to nowhere; spiritually speaking. It is always about where you are in each moment and not where you are going. The concepts of past and future lose validity when a person is actively conscious. I was walking the other day. It is a gratifying experience to walk outside in nature; especially during the springtime. I became very aware of the curves and directions of the path that I chose with each step.
Then I reflected on the purpose or reason for this journey. I asked myself if it truly had a purpose and if it did, what was the purpose? The obvious reason was because I wanted to get from point A to point B. I had a destination. The goal to arrive at a certain place was the motivation that influenced my decisions during the walk. That is at least what my first reaction was as I asked myself what it was that was motivating me.
Winding Path to thy Self
I suddenly became very conscious of the green springtime grass and the fragrance of the trees and flowers. I realized that the destination that I had planned for the walk down this winding path was not as important as the mind had thought. In fact, it was not important other than for the practical purpose of arriving. I stopped walking and gently caressed a flower. I sensed unification with everything.
The moment became mystical and time appeared to stand still. We could say that I experienced an instance of awakened enlightenment. Lao Tzu was correct in saying that “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”. However the experience of one moment outweighs the need to finish a journey. Or we could say that it is always better to stop and smell the roses.