A Path to the Undiscovered Country
Spirituality for Adventurers 4
So what does God require of us if we live a spirituality for adventurers?
- Keep on going.
- Deal with the temptation to return to Midian. This remains a big problem even in the desert, when the yearning for meat and bread makes the people want to return to Egypt.
- Do not prematurely write off life from your past, but return and bring that life out with you to a place where it can blossom.
- And then become like Moses, and become people who pass on the suggestion to others to set out and move on.
Shakespeare puts it this way in his masterpiece, Hamlet:
Who would these fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscover'd country from whose bourn
No traveller returns, puzzles the will
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
For Shakespeare the undiscovered country was the future. And in this passage, Shakespeare poses the same question as God does at the burning bush. How do you wish to move through life? As an adventurer? Or as a tourist?
Adventurers need a heart that revels in discovery. Adventurers don’t use maps. Their instrument is the compass. Tourists, on the other hand, always go to places, where others have prepared everything. They look for and book everything in advance. Adventurers take a chance. Tourists leave nothing to chance.
So we need to choose! What shall it be?
The heart of the adventurer or the heart of the tourist?
- The heart of the Adventurer goes where life is to be discovered.
The heart of the tourist goes where others have prepared life for us.
- The heart of the Adventurer seeks ways through the undiscovered country.
The heart of the tourist goes on prescribed paths.
- The heart of the Adventurer desires to explore the new.
The heart of the tourist desires only to be freed from the burden of daily life.
- The heart of the Adventurer takes the responsibility for his or her own life seriously.
The heart of the tourist desires, that others will take over the responsibility for his or her life.
- The heart of the Adventurer pays a price for this life and stakes no claim that this life must take on a certain form.
The heart of the tourist believes that he or she has a right to life as it him or her, because they paid a price for it (i.e. the bill for the hotel or the meal).
- The heart of the Adventurer requires orientation as a basic attitude of life.
The heart of the tourist requires planning as the basic attitude of life.
- The heart of the Adventurer learns how to draw life out of the new situation. What can I use, what not? What fosters life, what endangers it?
The heart of the tourist expects that everything it needs for life will be prepared for it.
- The heart of the Adventurer trusts in its creativity and energy in order to master life.
The heart of the tourist trusts in the creativity and energy of others, to master life for them.
- The heart of the Adventurer freely enters into risk..
The heart of the tourist fundamentally avoids risk.
Here the decision is made as to which culture of the heart will be lived out in us and our communities.
Erik Riechers SAC
Vallendar, September 19, 2019