What am I doing with the homework from week two, here nearing the middle of week six? Finishing it, that's what.
I had a big 'ole hurdle to jump with the "Guru Board" assignment. First, I was disappointed to find the exercise was restricted to humans. This animist was having fungal visions as soon as I began reading about this project. What?!? No furred, feathered or fungal friends? Fine then.
Second, even with Ms. Sylvann's caveat,
I was stymied by the g-word. But, putting aside my hang-ups & creatively blending the term "guru" with "muses," "mentors" & "inspirations," I was able to assemble my collage of faces... sans non-human beings (mostly)."I think of my gurus as those writers, artists, and other figures who have influenced my path so strongly that I turn to their works time and time again... I’ve had a lot of gurus... Some of them aren’t even spiritual teachers. Some might surprise you.They can be friends, family, strangers, celebrities, or the Beloved Dead. The important thing is that their lives have changed yours, and you continue to learn from them as you wander. For a Spiritual Nomad, a guru is like a linguist whose phrasebook you’d carry through a dozen far-flung villages or someone who drew a map long ago that you consult time and again while drawing your own..."
I ended up up creating clusters or globs of several people, or specific people & their works, or non-specific people who make up a general group or theme. It sounds disorganized, but it isn't really. There are teachers of old, teachers quite new, some who forever inspire & guide me, others who are more like an ill-placed freckle that never really goes away -- awkward, perhaps even obnoxious, but not without character. My past & "foundational" influences, are shown with their connections to one another & I made them block-like, more concrete looking. My more recent influences feel more fluid, like they are still evolving, developing, so they look like globs, growing, expanding, finding their shape.
There are a bunch others I could have added, but didn't for practical reasons like time, or anonymity. So, to my family: pretend you have your own glob -- a life-long inspirational glob of sharing, question-asking, weirdness & laughter. I could have added several other authors, plus all the scientists, explorers & free-thinkers out there, but really... there just isn't room! At the last minute I did feel the need to add a couple of cursory placeholders for the late dreamwork author/instructor Strephon Kaplan-Williams & the Shinto inspired Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki (along with a couple of his wonderful Spirits).
|Spiritual Nomad Assignment #2: The Guru Board|
To friends who appear here: Just complain if you want to be removed from the "Framily of Yore" glob. I put you there because you are the bee's knees. None of you will be mentioned by name, but you know who you are... please let me know if you prefer to be disappeared.
|My Beloved Mentors & 'Framily' of Yore|
As for the rest of my "Framily of Yore," these are the people who modeled respectful spiritual exploration, skepticism & discussion. They also saved me from believing everything published by Llewellyn. They are the family of seekers who taught me that maybe things are not quite as they seem & that none of us understand the divine in quite the same way, but that we can love one another just the same. It is they who first showed me what a true dedication to the gods, art, humanity & creativity looks like. Their past words & actions echo in my mind today... their recent ones too. I carry their wisdom with me always & I will never be able to thank them enough.
|Author Patricia Geary.|
|Voices of the blogosphere.|
(As represented by OWG)
|Mycologists, Mycophiles, Foragers & Foodies of the World.|
Whew! That concludes my "Guru Board" assignment. I take full responsibility for bending the rules a wee bit, but as a "Spiritual Nomad," that is to be expected, no? More homework assignments are in progress, so if you are bored by them, go read someone else's blog for a few days. When I finish up this course, it's time to focus on certain unfinished projects...