When Jose and I visited the Grand Canyon we were admiring the Temple of Shiva, a mesa standing apart from the North Rim. In the late afternoon light the warm colors of the canyon were increasingly spectacular, and Shiva was shimmering in violet, rose and gold. After a few moments Jose went to read an info-graphic nearby, and came back to report that the Temple was over 9 miles away. Not only that, but the North Rim in general was 14 to 18 miles away. Our jaws dropped, minds boggled, and we were challenged to believe our eyes.
NINE MILES? Really? We could see it so clearly!
One of the great pleasures of the west is the mind sensation of seeing over such vast spaces. It certainly draws visitors to the Canyon. I know I gloried in the many broad vistas we enjoyed in our travels. Even in crowded the Bay Area a trip across any of the bridges opened up into a soaring space. Our visit to Marin Highlands was literally dizzying for me. I could swim, fly, soar and plunge in all that magnificent visual space.
I learned a new word from Astrologer Rob Brezhny in this week’s reading. He writes:
The German word *Fernweh* can be translated as “wanderlust.” Its literal meaning is “farsickness,” or “an ache for the distance.”
Now that I’m back in lush, forested Southern Maryland, I’m finding the intimate treed locations to be claustrophobic. I am grateful or the shade, I love the greens, the rustling sounds, the many, many birds. But I’m pining for the wide-open spaces where my mind’s eye can soar. I am so glad to be home, my lovely home and friends, yet I am experiencing farsickness, feeling it like a physical longing in my bones. I am aching for distance, pining for that vastness, that wilderness of a scale that swamps my ability to measure it.
Brezhny quotes poet Robert Haas:
We call it “longing” because desire is full of endless distances.
In the rest of my weekly reading the astrologer challenges me and other Scorpios to explore the yearning and the distance, and find ways to bridge the gulf. I know that I feel much more in possession of my citizenship of this vast country, having made this trip. I stayed connected to a close friend who was moving away, in fact deepened our relationship. Attending a business conference far from home, I cemented relationships with colleagues and potential partners all across the country. I’ve spanned some great distances within myself, stretching to be connected to people in new ways.
And I am remembering how I carry those great spaces within myself. I can return to that canyon rim in my meditation and feel the sensation of awe that reminds me:
(I am large; I contain multitudes)
Now, where shall I go from here?