Welcome to my Wilderness Journal

You may enjoy my September 2012 blog: Sharing Experiences of Great Mystery, which describes the purpose of this wilderness log, photo-art gallery, and poetry corner. In Peace, Bob

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Yosemite: Pines Campground Paradise

Inquisitive Doe, 1980 scratchboard © Bob Hare 2012

Journal Entry: Summer, circa 1984: Pines Campground, Yosemite National Park, California
Mystical experiences can occur anywhere at anytime; they don’t always happen in a pristine natural environment. One Friday night I pulled into my campsite in Yosemite’s Pines Campground. I pulled out my tent and began to set it up when I was suddenly entranced by the panoramic beauty all around me which I hadn’t seen at all in my hurriedness to get here and get established. I dropped the tent poles and stood in one spot slowly turning to look in all directions at the wonders unfolding all around me. The mundane campsite of concrete picnic tables, parking pads, and restrooms suddenly transformed into a glorious unending woodland poem. Headlights of moving cars flashed in and out among the silhouetted trunks of ponderosa pines and the drifting campfire smoke. 

Looking Up, 1978 scratchboard © Bob Hare 2012

Above the smoke I could see the stars and the 4,000’ cliffs of Glacier Point. The calls and laughter of children and the drone of camp generators were equally blessed. I had room in my heart for everything. A clanging cook pot resonated like a meditation bell through my mind and infused the entire scene. I couldn’t tell where my mind ended and my perceptions began. Everything had an absolute clarity and perfection to it as if everything was a ripple on the still surface of a single consciousness that was generating both me and my experience. I didn’t need to do anything—all was complete at every unfolding point like a flower that never ceases blooming. I went to sleep in this seamless panorama of consciousness and woke up in my usual separate self with sleep in my eyes.

This experience is similar in feeling to one described by Emerson:

Standing on the bare ground—my head bathed by the blithe air, and uplifted into infinite space—all mean egotism vanishes. I become a transparent eyeball; I am nothing; I see all; the currents of the Universal Being circulate through me. I am part or parcel of God. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature

May all Beings be well, happy, and free! Yours in Peace, Bob Hare