I have been sitting at the local Farm and Craft Market on Saturday mornings this summer. I have a little book table where I hope to sell books and move them out into the world. My success with that has been variable. Sometimes I sell 20, sometimes one.
Whether I sell books or not, I am always interested in the people who either pass by or stop and talk. Humans are amazing to me, and I am happy to engage them, or not, based on their needs. Some pass by without looking, on their way to the painted rock refrigerator magnets. Some are not interested in books because, they admit, they don’t read.
Some people pass by and give my table a wide berth. Apparently, they see me as some kind of kook. They don’t want to have anything to do with alternate spirituality. A few have stopped to look and then backed away, as if a “conversation across the veil” implies black magic. One woman explained to me that she was catholic, and her faith didn’t have room for “evil spirits”. A man standing there at the same time verbally attacked her position, pointing out that Jesus was a mystic—he went out into the wilderness for forty days. She looked trapped and frightened. I explained that there was nothing in the book that went against her religion, that all spiritual activity is focused on Love, on loving one another, on opening to compassion and inclusion. She was relieved.
It seems that organized religion encourages some people to develop a bubble of security around them, a bubble that creates a there-is-only-one-way kind of thinking, which is easily threatened. I meet many more people who are searching. They are eager to talk about new ideas. I met Tom Soma, the former director of Ronald McDonald Houses in Washington State. He sold his belongings and is traveling the country in an RV, interviewing people along the way for a project called Looking For God in America.
Almost every week I meet at least one person who is thrilled to find Grandmother Dreams. They stop to talk. They buy books for themselves and their friends. It is exactly what they are looking for. Organized religion either no longer or never did meet their needs. They feel the spiritual shift that is occurring, the expansion of human function beyond the five senses. They are curious to find out more, to explore and share. I learn a lot from these conversations (see my blog entry from 10-12-14). They have enriched my life.
Winter is approaching, and the Farm and Craft Market is coming to an end. I am going to miss these opportunities to learn and connect. I will have to have to find another place to interface.