I Am The Way

I Am The Way

Dragonfly celebrating truth

Photo by sk on Unsplash

An old story recalled through Carolina Smith recent offering. felt necessary to share this story, with emphasis on the dance of the dragonfly.

At the beginning of the pilgrim’s journey, he found himself searching for answers. Answers about what he has learned thus far. Before accepting the path of a Warrior, he traveled many foreign lands in search of truth.

Attending Churches, Temples, and even Mosques…something remained void. Varying institutions all saying that they are the only way…our pilgrim left empty, chose to find deeper meaning.

On a cool fall day, he heard a whisper…I Am The Way.

Ignoring this voice, he carried on his search for truth. Finding none, he humbled himself, asking for truth. With the sound of the wind, he heard again, “I Am The Way.” Befuddled, he again asked for the truth to be revealed. The wind spoke, “I Am The Way.” Still not able to understand fully, he tabled the idea, fearing he might be losing his mind. Little did he know that he was about to lose a lot more.

A week had transpired, and our pilgrim found himself on a retreat in the middle of the woods in the United States Midwest. Having no food with him, he thought he would challenge Creation to receive everything needed for his weekend in the woods.

With only a book and some water, he ventured into the woods. Hours had passed…and for the first time, our pilgrim had felt peace within…but had no idea why. A noise caught his attention, as it was a familiar sound of a doe calling out in the woods. Anxious, he looked toward the sound, only to find nothing. When he returned his attention the other way, his friend appeared…it was a doe.

They exchanged looks until she began walking in a way that said, “Follow Me.”

Following the doe at about 20 steps behind, our pilgrim was interrupted by an injured squirrel. Being sensitive to animals and the fact there’s an injured squirrel, he stopped to witness the squirrel. The doe departed, leaving our friend alone with the squirrel and an overwhelming feeling.

What was this feeling? Sadness. He realized that his life was not on purpose and that so many injured souls remained he had not paid attention to.
Squirrel was the first messenger to appear before our pilgrim, and many more were coming. Messengers come in all shapes and sizes, from animals to humans, signs to books…all carrying a valid message for the pilgrims ready to receive. The squirrel taught him a valuable life lesson, but his weekend was far from over.

His guide, the doe, appeared again, inviting him to “Follow Me.”

Following his guide, he came upon a family of chipmunks. Observing them, he was, again, overwhelmed with emotions. He realized that he was a part of that family and a part of a greater whole. Crying now, our pilgrim wept as he realized he had spat on his brothers for far too long. Looking to the heavens, he vowed that I would extend my hand to my brothers and sisters from this day forward, no longer spitting in their faces.

Out of breath, his guide appeared with another invite to “Follow Me.”
Following the doe, his attention was drawn to something shiny and bluish. Getting a close look and his guide vanishing, he noticed a bird.

It was a blue jay.

In wonder, he questioned the lesson that lay lifeless before him as it had just plummeted to death. Reaching for the dead carcass to overturn it in disbelief that he witnessed this death, he became overwhelmed by emotion. Remembering how this blue jay once caused grief with annoying calls, he again met his emotions. Weeping, he realized this bird had just given his life to teach him another life lesson. This time, he was at a loss for words, realizing he had taken life for granted and life a nuisance. He found comfort in his calls.

Continuing with what he has equated to a modern-day station of the cross, he met his guide once more.

This time, his guide took him to an ancient burial ground where a life-size statue of the cross stands erected in the center. Christ was on the cross. Falling to the cross, our pilgrim noted the names and ages of the warriors before him. These warrior’s bodies, ranging from 23 years of age to 92, lay somewhere under the earth. Humbled, he thanked them for giving their lives in hopes of saving others…finally looking to Christ for the final “thank you.”

A day had passed, and our pilgrim was again met by his guide, leading him to a back trail leading to the unknown. Nature was calling to our friend as he had the urge to urinate. Knowing that people were on a retreat nearby, he hesitated to relieve himself at that spot. He was about to be taught a lesson of humility.

Looking over a ravine that led to a river, he noticed a bedpan in the middle of the cliff. It was as if God himself said, “My child, are you not a part of these woods? Do you not follow the same rules as my beloved children?” Through laughter, our pilgrim learned that he needed to trust the voices spoken to him. The voice appeared in the wind, “I Am The Way.”

From laughter to tears, our pilgrim fell, knowing that he was now hearing the voice of Creation.

The deer approached him softly on cue and invited him, “Follow Me.”
After walking for half a day, our pilgrim came to a crossroads, unsure which way to go. Understanding he must wait patiently as the path is revealed. Just as he learned of his inner voice came his intuition. He noticed a beautiful sound of birds singing and immediately knew The Way.

He followed intuition, to his surprise…his guide. He sat and pondered this lesson and knew that he always had an internal guide with him…only this time, he was listening.

Led to yet another challenge, he found himself at a crossroads once more as his guide vanished.

This time, overwhelmed by four options to turn down, he decided to sit. Falling asleep after sitting for an hour, he awoke to a dream state. In his dream, the jungle had come alive and was a part of it. Anxious to tell the world of his discoveries, his alarm went off. Looking at his watch, it was 10:10 am.

Startled by his alarm, he awoke from sleep, and his watch was exactly 10:10 am.

In disbelief, he replayed his dream, but for the first time, he was awake. What was once in his dream shall become a reality. Without thought, he began running down a path that led him to a darkened area of the woods. Not sure if he should enter the darkened path, his guide appeared to him, inviting him, “Follow Me.”

The answer was clear, and his fears immediately dissipated as he marched into the darkness.

Halfway down the path was a bench…pausing for a rest. Replaying the lesson, he realized darkness was all around him in the real world, but he was no longer afraid. Trusting the lesson, he stood tall, knowing his future was brighter than before. As if the wilderness had heard his thoughts, thousands of dragonflies swarmed around him. Opening a path for him, he ran unafraid as the trumpets sounded and the dragonflies applauded him.

It was early evening, and he saw animals running behind the pines. It was his guide running at the pace of being chased by another. His eyes did not mislead him as he saw more sets of legs…the wolves.

Fear of his guide being hurt, he ran to her rescue only to be stopped by a voice, “Thy Will Be Done.” Knowing that at times he shall know when it is God’s will and he is not to intervene…this was one of those times. As he stopped, allowing this lesson to unfold, he noted a statue to his right. It was a statue of Archangel Michael pointing to the sky…reminding him, “Thy Will Be Done.”

In disbelief, he retired for the second night in hopes that he would once again see his guide. All through the night, he lay attentive to the sound of his guide…but only silence.

Arising to a new day, he set out to greet whatever came his way. To his relief, his guide appeared one last time. This time, the pilgrim knew it was goodbye.

The deer reached within ten feet, and he silently thought, “Be still and let her come to you.” She did. Now, within arms reach, they locked eyes, sharing a grateful look. Slowly embracing his guide and tears in his eyes, he uttered, “Thank You.” …she was gone.

For now, the story concludes, but more chapters to follow. While the story sounds fictitious, I assure you it is not. This story is a depiction of many pilgrims who have lost their way. While lost, they can follow their instincts and believe that all will return to good. Upon answering the call, these pilgrims choose to call themselves Warriors.

Following the path of a pilgrim, lost and scared, or choosing to follow the guiding light housed in all of us.

Are you ready? Will you listen to the voice within? It is your time to shine…what are you waiting for?

Stepping into the Canvas once a pilgrim, only to emerge as A Warrior. We can choose to follow the path of the old or a brighter path of the future, painting a brighter tomorrow.

When greeted by various groups, our emerging warrior speaks the truth and fears not what will come of it. To his surprise, he hears them speak… “you speak so truthfully. You are one of us.” To his dismay, he witnesses once more the human trait of claiming someone as their own and labeling them. Smiling, he replies, “Thank you… I Am That.”

~ Ani Po

Thank you Marilyn Glover, and the whole Third-Eye-Gypsy family for holding this sacred space.

Much gratitude for those who take time to read, ponder, and allow the inner workings of self to come forward. Grateful for the feedback, love shared, and, more importantly, the Dance with Inspiration. Deep Peace.

Joseph Lieungh

Photo by Javardh on Unsplash