April 20, 2018

Roots and Wings

I’ve always believed that children need both roots and wings. The book Where Main Street Meets the River by Hodding Carter laid out this beautiful thought and I have never forgotten it. I can almost visualize my kids with tree-like roots that reach deep into the earth and the most gorgeous, feathered wings that will help them fly to explore new horizons.

Roots seem to me to be the things that establish us, ground us, and make us belong. Roots are family, community, a sense of ourselves and the world around us. These are such important relationships and this growth of our personal root system ends up to be the framework for our values.

Wings, on the other hand, are those things that take us beyond the small circle of self and family into which we are born. They carry us out into the life that we create for ourselves. Wings help us establish goals, dreams and confidence. Wings are what propel us forward to experience the larger world around us.

In the same way, our sanctuary practice needs both roots and wings. 

Many of us crave sanctuary for ourselves because we are suffering. Because we are hurting, we create a place where we can find enough quiet to heal. That is what comprises the roots of sanctuary — healing, grounding, harmony, peace.

The wings of our sanctuary practice, then, are those things that will allow us to go beyond the world we inhabit now, fraught with our insecurities, fears, and worries. We begin to experience the wings of our sanctuary practice when we are stronger and our life begins to take flight. When we begin to feel free enough to take creative risks. This is when we are feeling better, and seeking to expand our horizons.

This is why I will always have a sanctuary for myself. Because when I was hurting, I created this sacred space for myself, where I could heal and find my center again. It worked so beautifully! And sometimes I still come here to heal, to dig my roots deep within the earth. Grounding myself through my sanctuary practice is how when I get off track, I get back in touch with who I really am.

So yes — in case you were wondering, I do still have those kinds of days. But a lot of the time, I come to my sanctuary to fly. To dream, to plan, to simply think and be. I come here to stretch my creativity, my mind and my spirit. I come here, mindful and aware of the deep well of joy that’s within me. And it is just one of my very favorite things, this sanctuary of mine.

So, where are you right now? What is it that YOU are hoping to experience in your sanctuary — roots or wings? I’d love to hear about it — post your answer in the comments below. You know how much I love hearing from you.

With love and gratitude,


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