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Canadian Thanksgiving

It is Canadian Thanksgiving today. Instead of Thanksgiving being a once a year day with underlying commercial interests, it raised questions about being full of thanks for each ensuing moment. What if I were grateful and thankful each day-each moment? This is impossible. What I need to do is hold the thought at the forefront and perhaps it elevates the thankfulness I experience.

We began with a dinner last night with our oldest son and his partner. He headed out to an out-of-town job today. Tonight, we celebrate with our youngest. He worked last night, so was unavailable.

Gratitude and thankfulness–

Turning to beloved;

Embracing one another;

Celebrating what held sacred.

In each moment–

Experiencing the extraordinary;

Revealing itself in the ordinary;

Sensing it is there.

Harvesting bounties–

Sharing common weal;

Valuing de-monetized wealth;

Feeling blessed.

I took this of Kathy standing on a rock above Rearguard Falls on the Fraser River in Mount Robson Provincial Park. I am thankful for the time we spend together and Nature.

Longing for the Mountains of Solitude

Kathy and I enjoy driving to and through the mountains. Where Kathy grew up, the Rockies are visible in the distance. We try to make a trip once a year, but have not this past year, with my finishing the dissertation. I say “a trip” as we have access to several routes.

Today, I came across this poem by Za Paltrül Rinpoche. I could not find a link to the poet, but the words spoke to me. Although I am terrified of heights, mountains invite me to find ways to safely explore them, finding peace and solitude in safe ways.

Kathy took this picture on the Going to the Sun Highway in Glacier National Park in Montana.

This is Mount Robson, BC. It is the highest point in the Canadian Rockies at almost 4, 000 metres (almost 13, 000). Due to its height, the top is not always visible. I took this picture on one of our many trips past Mount Robson. It is one of those views that never disappoints. One year we walked along Robson River for several kilometres.

Fooled in samsara town—

the endless cycle of countless chores,

preoccupations of a delusory world—

this boy’s mind longs for mountains of solitude.

Hassled by monastery life—

the hustle of duties and communal dues,

pursuits of pointless distraction—

This boy’s mind longs for mountains of solitude.

Whomever I look at, I see at death’s threshold;

whatever I think on, I sense denial of dying,

grasping at the deathless; in this courtyard of death,

this boy’s mind longs for mountains of solitude.

Whomever I meet with manifests clinging and repulsion;

whomever I talk to brings deception and lies;

faced by companions without virtuous conduct,

this boy’s mind longs for mountains of solitude.

Behold, beings in the three realms are fooled by afflictions;

the beings of the six realms are led astray;

delusion engenders the birth of suffering for all;

this boy’s mind longs for mountains of solitude.

By the blessings of the undeceiving guru and the [Three] Jewels,

may I attain and persevere in solitude;

by the force of a place of seclusion,

may I attain a mystic’s isolation

of body, speech, and mind.

May I be blessed by the mountains of solitude.

Thanksgiving

We are in the midst of Canadian Thanksgiving weekend and honouring Sabbath holds more meaning although maybe it should not. What if I were grateful and thankful each day-each moment?

Gratitude and thankfulness

Celebrate each moment

Turn to beloved others

Hold tight

Recognize worth

Share sacred

Moment by moment

Recognize extraordinary

Revealed in ordinary

What I take for granted

It is there

In each moment.

The rich bounty

Feel blessed.

That is Kathy standing on a rock right above Rearguard Falls on the Fraser River in Mount Robson Provincial Park. Two things I am grateful for.

Mount Robson Provincial Park – British Columbia

We stopped several times in Mount Robson Provincial Park. I find an advantage in most Canadian provincial parks is the accessibility of many of the featured places. Our first stop was at the visitor centre at the base of Mount Robson. We walked a few hundred metres up the Berg Lake Trail. The headwaters of the Robson River are located at the base of the mountain and begin with Robson Glacier. The river runs fast and has many areas where rapids and small waterfalls flow. The colour of the water is a product of the rock particles the glacier scrapes from the bedrock it passes over.

Mount Robson towers above the valley and dominates the skyline. It is not always fully visible, but is still the most imposing feature of this area.

We stopped again at Overlander Falls which is on the Fraser River below its confluence with the Robson. These falls are less spectacular than others we have seen, but even I was able to get down to the viewing area. They are about 10 metres tall and 30 metres wide.

A person realizes the slope of the river when they look at a picture of it below the falls. We captured the blue-green colour of the Fraser closer to its headwaters in these two pictures.

Our next stop was at Mount Terry Fox. Terry Fox is a Canadian hero who began the Marathon of Hope in St. John’s Newfoundland on April 12, 1980 by dipping his artificial leg in the Atlantic Ocean. He lost the leg to his first battle with cancer and had to stop the marathon on September 14, 1980 near Thunder Bay due to a relapse. He passed away at the age of 23, but left an important legacy for Canadians.

Our last stop was at Rearguard Falls which are at the top of the hill before Tete Jaune Junction.  These falls are quite wide and hard to get good shot from above them. We took this picture at the bottom of the trail and stairs. It was still hard to do justice to the width of the falls.

I was down at the falls level. The provincial parks people built a great set of stairs for the final foray to the bottom for me. I was not getting any closer, but this captured a bit more of the width of the river at this point.

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