Intuitive Abilities
I decided to walk off the beaten path the other day on my hike up Terrace Mountain. I wanted to experience how I felt being off the regular hiking path. I found an opening on the east side of the mountain and ventured up the steep slope. It had snowed the day before so there was a skiff of snow covering the ground. It was beautiful in the forest and the first part of the walk was wonderful and exhilarating.
We must have been on private property because I stumbled upon a few barbed wire fences and no trespassing signs.
To trespass: the word dates back to 14th century Middle English from Anglo-French trespasser to overtake, exceed, wrong. Implies an unwarranted or unlawful intrusion (“Trespass,” n.d.).
Boundaries delineating spaces have been in existence for a long time.
“White men, he began, made the common mistake of assuming that, because the Aboriginals were wanderers, they could have no system of land tenure. This was nonsense. Aboriginals, it was true, could not imagine territory as a block of land hemmed in by frontiers: but rather as an interlocking network of ‘lines’ or ‘ways through’ (Chatwin, 1987, p. 56).
As I climbed higher up the mountain I noticed my mind was full of fearful thoughts - mostly thoughts about getting lost. Even though I knew I could trace my steps back, I became increasingly more uncomfortable the further up the mountain I got. As the fearful thoughts got louder, I decided to sit, listen and breathe. I reflected on just how much I am accustomed to the linear grid of city life and following well-trodden paths. I have never spent any time as an adult cultivating my sense of direction because I haven’t really needed to. I thought about what knowledge I had - if I did get lost -  and how I could find my way back home. I knew that more moss grew on the north side of the trees and the positioning of the sun could tell me the directions but it was a cloudy day. I felt a longing to reconnect with this type of knowing - to be able to wander in the hills and mountains and feel at home and safe. How I have been severed from this kind of knowing about place - just as the land has been severed into barbed wire cages - trapping us in our confined and safe areas and keeping vagrants and trespassers OUT. It dawned on me that I didn’t want to write about this because I felt embarrassed that I was afraid - and then I knew I must write about it.
“We are, after all, a part of Nature too. Why should we not be more capable of being tuned in to her than, in our urbanized, mechanized, indoor lives, we have memories of? If, put in a natural environment, being still and alert to new sensation, expecting only whatever happens and nothing more nor less, accepting such sensation as real and acting on it gives us new information about the world and/or extends our understanding of our place in creation, then it seems to me a practice worth pursuing. It may be that most people are so tense, so bombarded by other external stimuli and so disbelieving, such hard-core materialists, that they simply don’t notice intuition when it does strike. It is possible that if we spent more time alone and in Nature our intuitive abilities - another way of gathering information about the world - would strengthen” (Butala, 1994, p. 123).