Walk on Behalf of Someone
From the window of her moving car the young blonde shouted out, “Are you a monk?”
At that moment a large van wedged its way with in the lane between her and the sidewalk. She vanished and couldn’t here my response which was, “I’m the real McCoy!”
I was on my way to the subway to take it to the end of the line. From there I trekked a good ten kilometres through the suburbs of Mississauga not just for an adventure but as a dedication to a deceased devotee, Sukadev, who passed away just the day before.
Dedication walks are extremely powerful. The walker sets himself or herself as a form of prayer simply through the act of walking in honour of someone. Putting leg power into the well-being of a loved one is a strong way to communicate with that person. I recall in 2003 while on one of the three Trans-Canada walks I decided to dedicate one day to Keshava Sharma, one of our shining youths who is very active in service to the community. I walked to wish him well.
That day happened to rain for eight straight hours which began as if on cue with him with my first step. It got so wet to the point that I could not sit anywhere dry and it was practically all countryside meaning there was no place for a break. I ended up trekking those eight hours straight with 40km under my feet investing them, in a subtle way, to a young guy who deserved the dedicated attention.
I take such reflective walks as moving prayers.
If there was time for a second question to come from the blonde such as, “What do you do as a monk?” which is a natural follow-up query, then I would say that one of the things monks do is to walk in dedication.