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Spiritual Refuge

Posted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 8:29 am
by Ridge70
I know I'm not alone in this but I want to hear from people that feel the way I do. Does anyone ever feel the need to go up to the ridge when times are tough? I've been having a rough time recently with unemployment, the economy, and other personal issues. I went up to Minnewaska yesterday for a few hours and did the Millbrook trail. I really just needed to get out the house and was only planning to walk around the lake. It definately helped for the moment.

I just find that when times are tough or I need to get away, I can count on the Ridge. Don't get me wrong, I go up there even in the best of moods but when I'm down and out I can go there and most of the times it picks me up. Maybe it's just that I'm out in nature with my camera in hand and any place will do. There are a few places near me that are a bit closer. But I feel this very deep spiritual connection to the ridge and that I belong there. I almost feel as if I'm not "alone" when I'm there. I've even gone as far as informing close friends and family that I want my cremains scattered in Lake Awosting...when the time comes.

Anyone else have any personal stories you'd like to share? I know I'm not alone here.

Best...

Re: Spiritual Refuge

Posted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 7:22 pm
by Old Girl Scout
I understand how you feel. I'm not a religious person, nor do I meditate, but I have always had a deep spiritual awareness when hiking, biking, or swimming at Minnewaska. Not only there, but other places, too. No matter what is happening in my life, when I'm out in fresh air, moving through it and seeing nature, I feel gratitude and peace. It doesn't have to be a beautiful day, but I feel beautiful.

Re: Spiritual Refuge

Posted: Thu Jan 22, 2009 7:58 am
by Sharon Saracino
I know exactly how you feel. It is good for the soul to be outdoors in the peace and beauty of the Shawangunk Mts. Whether I am hiking with friends or by myself I just feel better for being there. I always have my camera around my neck and I take a lot of pictures because some day I will not be able to take those long hikes anymore but I will still be able to visit the "Gunks" by looking at all my pictures and remembering those wonderful days when I was there in person.

Re: Spiritual Refuge

Posted: Wed Feb 04, 2009 12:39 pm
by billyb
I'm so glad you started this thread! Sometimes when I just dont feel grounded or sane, I head up to the ridge and find my center. I don't belong "down" here in the cars and concrete and noise. The solace that the mountains offer me can only be matched by my family and close friends. I also find that in times of joy or great happiness or when things are running smoothly I like to climb the trails to the cliffs and reflect on how great it is to exist, to be able to feel the wind and the sun.

now im feeling good, i know what im doing tomorrow

Re: Spiritual Refuge

Posted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 6:58 am
by cc
I also go up to Lake Minnewaska when I am down or depressed, always cheers me up!

Re: Spiritual Refuge

Posted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 10:08 pm
by Jay Morena
The ridge has been a healing spot for me and my brother for years now. We absolutely love it. We were up there in the fall of 09 and I was doing a smudging ceremony with my brother when this women came out of nowhere and I asked her if she would like to be smudged too. She replied yes and after that just left with a look of complete contentment on her face. Those cliffs carry a magic in them and must be the combination of quartz and limestone in the rocks. I know the native americans must have used this for a power spot many years ago.

Re: Spiritual Refuge

Posted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 8:20 am
by Ridge70
Jay Morena wrote:The ridge has been a healing spot for me and my brother for years now. We absolutely love it. We were up there in the fall of 09 and I was doing a smudging ceremony with my brother when this women came out of nowhere and I asked her if she would like to be smudged too. She replied yes and after that just left with a look of complete contentment on her face. Those cliffs carry a magic in them and must be the combination of quartz and limestone in the rocks. I know the native americans must have used this for a power spot many years ago.


Interesting. What exactly is a smudging ceremony?

I really wish more people would either post or comment on these forums. I sometimes feel like I'm the only one here. Then again, that's sometimes how I feel up on the Ridge lol. Seriously, I post something and it seems like months go by before anyone posts. The only other forums I see related to the Gunks is gunks.com but it's more climbing related.

Re: Spiritual Refuge

Posted: Wed Feb 24, 2010 10:20 am
by gunx
This is what I found about smudging:
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Our Native elders have taught us that before a person can be healed or heal another, one must be cleansed of any bad feelings, negative thoughts, bad spirits or negative energy - cleansed both physically and spiritually. This helps the healing to come through in a clear way, without being distorted or sidetracked by negative "stuff" in either the healer or the client. The elders say that all ceremonies, tribal or private, must be entered into with a good heart so that we can pray, sing, and walk in a sacred manner, and be helped by the spirits to enter the sacred realm.

Native people throughout the world use herbs to accomplish this. One common ceremony is to burn certain herbs, take the smoke in one's hands and rub or brush it over the body. Today this is commonly called "smudging." In Western North America the three plants most frequently used in smudging are sage, cedar, and sweetgrass.
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I also wonder why this site doesn't get more traffic. I know I come here when I'm starting to get cabin fever and long to be on the foot trails of Minnewaska.