A few weeks ago we were traveling on the Alaska Railroad from Anchorage to Denali National Park. The morning began rainy, cloudy, and cold. Being in the comfort of the domed car we were fed with Beauty Changing at every mile as clouds gave way to fall foliage and clear views of the Denali mountain range.
We were a diverse group of travelers from around the world, wearing masks or not, carrying unknown companions of COVID-19, colds, coughs, biases and misunderstandings. Locked in our train carriage for 8 hours allowed us to slowly observe, ask questions, and share in the sights unveiled along the way.
|How often do you see the beauty around you?|
(Photo: Alaskan landscape, Larry Gardepie 2022)
Yes, we were in our own world -- that of the train car and that of our own making. But we were sharing Time and Beauty as we discovered together new Frontiers Revealed. Sitting with these pictures today, I am seeing details that I missed in those few fleeting moments as the train passed the wilderness outside.
A guide narrated where we were and interpreted what we were seeing. This helped us track on a map how far we had traveled, how far we still needed to go, and the unusual clarity of this Fall day.
|As we pass quickly through this life,|
are we aware of the changes in ourselves and others?
(Photo: Denali mountain range with fall foliage,
Larry Gardepie 2022)
The Denali mountain range at first was a mystery: were we seeing clouds behind a darker mountain range? The guide helped our eyes and minds to understand the majestic heights of Denali as it towered over the smaller peaks and rivers below. With excitement and awe, she explained that many people never see Denali because of the weather it creates and hides behind; that only 30% will see Denali with clouds; and that we were members of the 10% Club, seeing Denali clearly without clouds.
Along our privileged day-long journey, we moved from not seeing... to seeing partially... and then seeing with clarity.
|Do we see clearly what is before us?|
(Photo: Denaili mountain range with no clouds,
Larry Gardepie 2022)
I believe Dialogue is similar: when we slow down our fast-paced lives and allow humility and curiosity to guide us, we begin to seek answers to questions that alluded us. Together, we share where we are and decide where we need to go:
- We move from Beasts Unknown that hide and protect us;
- Through assumptions and opinions that cloud what we see; and,
- Arrive at clarity based on the facts before us.
In other words, sometimes we need to be locked together in the struggles of this world to appreciate Our Beasts and Our Beauty.
May you see the beauty of each person this week as the World's Beasts and Beauty reveals itself.
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