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An Unpaved Pathway: Where Children of Antinanco Wonder

Imagine -

You take a long drive into the forest

When you arrive you follow an unpaved pathway

Into sacred space

The sound of drumming beckons

Your heartbeat, your footsteps, your breath

All begin to merge

With the beat of the drums

As you get closer -

You hear squeals of children’s laughter

And voices carrying songs, speaking of the trees

Songs of our joyful place, immersed in Nature

Connecting so deeply

In the experience of being and relating

In this peaceful place of quiet listening

And wakeful dreaming

As to awaken a kind of knowing

A kindness

Within the kindling

of your heart’s hearth.

You arrive at the central hearth of this happy gathering, welcomed by gentle eyes and soft smiles.

The youngest children are immediately drawn to the colorful drums. They begin to play and dance along. letting the rhythmic music move their bodies in ways you feel but have forgotten the carefree abandon of childlike wonder. You begin to remember it here.

Around the fire you sway, exploring the space. Some of the older kids have gathered also around this mesmerizing fire. Instinctively tending to the flames, as the unburnt ends of sticks are carefully relocated on top of the hottest embers.

Other children are working on projects. They seem to be self-directed until you notice a guiding presence in their midst, making herself available for questions and instruction as needed, encouraging without enforcement, genuine and delighted by the creations being made together and independently. Some of the adults, their curiosity piqued, embark on their own creative journey.

The creative spirit dances within

Expression in new and forgotten ways

Offered to the Earth, to the Fire

Mirroring the gifts

Received within your heart’s hearth

Sometimes the kids stay for the weekend

And sometimes with their families

Or a space to honor boys

In the summer, girls gather for the week, or a day

Swimming. Laughing

Circling up together spontaneously to sing

Embodied in their innocent bliss

Held in a simple womb of loving mindfulness

Receiving the abundant simple gifts being shared

Treasures. Beautiful memories. Practical skills - were you taught how to change the tire of a car?

The value of studying the ecosystem where we live in this immersive way is that we come away in relationship not only to Nature, with a sense of responsibility for the stewardship of this great great Earth, but also with a deeper relationship to ourselves, to the nature within us, bringing us to a great presence with our ability to be with the people and world around us.

Your reverie is interrupted by a scent that activates your salivary glands and you see people in the kitchen space working to prepare a meal together. You see there is room for one more, and you love to cook in community so you join the easy conversation. Your help, refused at first, is kindly welcomed. Your heart begins to grow again, your love becoming infused into the pot.

The kids make home-made pizzas baked inside a handcrafted cob oven. Conversations settle around the fire again, some silently eating while gazing into the flames and listening, integrating experience. Others, become more jolly as they befriend kindred spirits and their bodies delight in the delicious nutrition.

video by Fotorumm

Our host gently moves the group from experience to experience in a ceaseless feminine flow full of rest. Yes, restful being. Restful awakening of senses. Peaceful and informative. Important work is being done here.

Sowing the seeds for the next generation. Nurturing minds and hearts, always with a mind toward reciprocity toward this Earth.

The next morning is more of the same easy and creative, gentle, kind, flow. We plant trees to regenerate the local species of Chestnuts, and create a food forest with Papaya, Apple, Persimmon, and Serviceberry/Juneberry. The kids learn quickly and volunteer to help show the other adults how to pick the right spot, dig a hole, plant the sapling, drive the stake and fasten the protective shield around the young tree. We drum and sing happy growing songs to the tree.

You wonder what the statistical results will be for the recorded growth rate of these trees compared to the ones that we planted three years ago. Time will tell. Until then, this community will keep coming to love and tend to these lands and learn what we can do with these hands.

Time passes slowly with scavenger hunts and wood burning - wooden signs etched with the names we’ve given to the saplings we planted are carefully created. Children exhibiting such a focused quiet mindful attention to this task.

You learn about wild edible medicinal plant life Shared wonder

Shared laughter

Awe and love fill your being.

Now imagine it’s time to leave this gathering. Your heart has made such deep connections you now count these people among your friends. The children, too, seem completely at ease and replenished by the experience.

Slowly, very slowly, you move through time and space along the unpaved path back to your vehicle.

Driving away, through the canopy of trees, greening leaves and blossoming flowers, you reflect and integrate the enormity of such simple blessings.

You just know you’ll be back again.


About Dhyāna Kluth:

Dhyāna is an international best-selling author, life coach, and intuitive medium. She lives in Bloomfield, NJ with her husband and two daughters. When not focused on her psycho-spiritual client work, Dhyāna can be found ushering kids to homeschool co-op activities and hikes, or tasting dandelions in her wild medicinal back yard.

Learn more about Dhyāna's work, and check out her book "Isis, Mother of Magic" Here

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