Finding Beauty in Shadow
“Scared of his own shadow,” we hear about people who are easily frightened. I feared the dark space under my bed as a kid, wondering what monster might grab my ankle if I dared step to the floor before dawn.
What perils await in the murky spaces beyond our focus? Do shadows always enshroud evil? Of course not. Darkness conceals the unknown, and not knowing makes us anxious.
Sometimes good surprises are obscured from view. Behind shady bushes, we might find unexpected blooms. A shadow at the base of a tree might disguise the entrance to a woodland creature’s burrow. In the dappled light and shadows of a tree, we might discern the silhouette of a bird.
We all walk through dark patches in life but can find meaning beyond them. Through health challenges, we find compassion for others. Through the loss of loved ones, we find greater understanding for those who remain, including ourselves. Through defeated attempts to reach our goals, we discover insights and determination to go forward.
Through history, people even find ways to draw meaning and goodness from collectively experienced dark periods of pandemic and war.
May each of us find something uplifting in the light and shadows of our days, and reach out to those who are struggling in the dark.
This week’s Hike Notes, Junipero Serra Park, introduces a park that offers beautiful nature trails marked by dramatic light and shadow, views of the San Francisco Bay, and multiple playground and picnic areas, close to San Francisco (and near the edge of the San Andreas Fault).
Click Insights/Hike Update News for inspiring reflections. Browse hikes on the main Hikes page or on the Hike Search by Area (was Quick View Hike List) page. Click World Walks to see or share favorite family-friendly walks! Stay in touch with Lisa Louis and HikingAutism via Contact.
Check the Home page for the broader background story. If you’re not able to take one of these Northern California hikes, hopefully you can enjoy the photo galleries at the bottom of each hike page! Please feel free to share, and follow on Twitter at @HikingAutism
New this week:
Hike Notes 152: Junipero Serra Park
Sharing insights and hiking highlights (Hikes, Hike Search by Area) from the special needs caregiver front in San Francisco.