Yoish! I feel it is necessary to warn the shod and sedentary that there is a danger in stepping out of shoes and engaging the land with your naked soles and learning to step into your primal body memory.
Because it will “make sense”!
And “making sense” is addictive.
It is a challenge for the tender feet at first. But it is an adventure! After all it requires that you pay attention and give up “Marching with Denial and Domination”.
But in time and with practice paying attention to where and how you place your foot begins the awakening of a new story.
The soles open and the flow of sensory information stimulates a deep fire inside of you, a remembering of a deep desire to step further into playing with the land, craving more and more tactile sensory flow, storing it in your body. You just might find yourself wondering around in the mountains as i did, wondering about the story that you are living. You begin to feel and track the simple things in your life. Where does the water i drink come from? Where does the food come from? Why is there a stink in the wind i breath? Why is there so much noise? When was the last time that i rested my eyes on natural organic reflections? Why do i fear touching the land? What is wrong with the story of civilization?
It is an interesting thing to notice about story. The fundamental meaning of the word is to store. We gather things. Then we store them and then we release them. When you begin to follow your feet out of denial. You begin a journey that opens a sensory flow that “stores” in you feelings that change your awareness, and releases a new telling, a new story.
A story is good if it “makes sense”, making sense in the most direct meaning of the word, direct touch of the land. “Making Sense” by touching the land. I found this foot notion of “making sense” in the book Spell of the Sensous, by David Abhrams. I took this foot notion along with the book on a long Foot Quest in the Cascades. I trained with it for days and days. I would read a few pages and then go on a long footing and think about what i had read, or i would build a fire, gather some stones, dance with them until a trance and think about “making sense”, pulling with my muslces into “common sense”, “community sense”. It is a good training manual. But he left out a very important point: Take this book for a walk or run in the last of the wild. For the sedentary have forgotten this point, have forgotten how to “make sense” with their feet and “make story”.
I do the same with the exuberant animal manuals. They are foot notions to guide me into understanding the predicament of our modern sedentary living. Just check out the essay Pathology on Parade on the website.
Training requires three things, knowledge, skill and desire. These three points are like a three pointed compass that guide me into “making sense”, “making story”.
So my warning is that following your feet will change your story, change the way you feel the way you think, the way you share story, the way you relate (play) with the land.
Much easier to stay defeeted in the story of domination and denial, not healtheir or happier, not making sense, just less effort.
I share the pictures of my bed roll and tent, one suggestion for stepping out of the shoe box.