What a year we had in 2012. Our year at Headwaters ended with a massive snow storm for 5 days. This equaled lots of digging, plowing and tractor work, and of course beauty beyond description. Mt. Shasta is quite simply glowing like a massive crystal.
For Headwaters 2012 was a wonderful year. Our business is strong and our students are a gift. My job is an amazing one, as I get to teach what I love, and photograph what I love, and live where I love with people and animals I love. I turned 58 this last Christmas day and as we start a new year I feel very thankful for my life. It's good to live on this wonderful earth and to belong to this earth community. I really feel that all things are connected. It's good to belong.
I believe that 2013 will be the beginning of a new way of living. One where we humans take our earth care taking gift to higher and higher levels. It's in the act of earth care taking that we access our better ways. What's better in life than caring for our precious planet, and as a by-product of this we naturally become more aware and loving. This awareness expands outward in concentric rings thus making our world a better place to live. In our school we believe that simple in all things and ways is best. Making our lives about love, service, kindness and living what we love is what we need to do and be.
This year I've began to look more deeply at my life purpose and my legacy. Turning 58 can do this to us. I know I'm a teacher and I know my legacy is in my students. I know I'm a photographer and my legacy is in my books and my archives. I know I'm a land care taker and my legacy is in my land. I know I'm a leader of my community and what's been created as a result of this community and my legacy is in all that have been touched by this community. These next years of my life you'll find me growing Headwaters in a deeper Heart way. Connecting more and more at a heart level with all things great and small.
I'll be living more through kindness and service. I want the school to be just that, a place of kindness and service. I want the school to be a place of pilgrimage where students will be able to see and feel and experience how humans are meant to live. I'm aware that Headwaters is a bright light for many and my purpose is to continue to deepen the Headwaters experience on all levels. I'm commited to keeping Headwaters to be healthy and vibrant.
In order for Headwaters to be healthy and vibrant you the student must participate and it can't just be me and our wonderful staff. To grow and deepen our school we need you, the lovers of Headwaters, to keep the circle full by owning your part in keeping Headwaters growing in a good way. I would like to offer some ways to do this in 2013:
Bring a new student to our school
Come back and take more classes
Share what you've learned at Headwaters with others.
Donate to the Walker/Hupp Fund to help others who need help coming to our school.
Keep us in your thoughts.
Always get out into nature, this is most important.
Have an adventure in nature.
Know that as a pilgrimage spot, Headwaters holds space for our extended community of nature lovers. I'm commited to continuing to nurturing and growing Headwaters. Headwaters is your school and community and family. As with all things in life that matter to us, to keep them healthy we must water them as we water a garden. Let's do more, let's add nutrients to the garden, let's spend time in the garden finding community, friendship and purpose for our lives.
All the best for 2013
p.s. I want to thank all the people that helped our school grow this year, you know who you are, all of you matter and I couldn't do Headwaters without each of you. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.
I want to offer a special thank you to Julie Boettler. Julie is the supreme example of what this letter is all about. Quite simply Headwaters wouldn't be what it is without her time and energy, love and full commitment.
A last thought... As our native ancestors taught us so well, Life is a mystery, a mystery that's a gift worth fully living. We all look for purpose in our lives, in these troubled times even more so. As nature teaches us so often, that the greatest things in life are the most simple and often right in front of us, right there for the taking. As we build our awareness and more and more amazing things show up for us, it becomes our work to engage with these things, and by doing so bringing them alive and making them medicine for us, our community and our earth, which is our community.
One life's purpose that is so obvious that we often bypass is this; be kind, be of service to our earth and all that lives upon it, and have fun and adventure with our earth. If you live this way, and I mean really make it your life's purpose, be fully commited, then many more wonderful amazing things will come your way in life. Your challenge will be to be aware as they come your way. I've learned so well from nature myself as I've watched and participated in the ebb and flow of life and death. Life is the greatest gift for humans, animals, plants, trees, insects and on and on. Live life fully, live what you love! It's simple.