Kilburn, New Brunswick
The great thing about yesterday’s presentation at the Wellness Centre in Woodstock was the attendance by local folks including a farmer who does his daily hour walk before getting to a tractor. There was also a member of a butcher family, who came forward to purchase A Higher Taste. On our display table we featured this publication on vegetarian dishes. I was also thrilled to have some First Nations people present. Prior to our arrival, they did some smudging to purify the space.
In the past two weeks attendees were just so responsive. Venues, although not too large, but adequate, became full. Woodstock was no exception. The people were great.
Now I’m back on the NB Trail, a segment of the Trans Canada Trail System. I still have the Saint John river to my left side as I head North. I came upon one Wendell Philmore in the village of Juniper. He was toiling in the soil, planting tomatoes, beans, peppers and such in his garden. I met with him. You see, sometimes I have to come out of my comfort zone now and then. The trail I’m on sends a natural message to keep going, but the reason I’m out here in the first place, is to connect with souls, humans included.
After my conversation with Wendell, I met Pointy. That’s not his actual name, it’s the name I gave him. On the trail (and here the path appears less travelled) was a porcupine. Very docile he was. I squatted down to make eye contact. He didn’t move except for the head. “Hi Pointy, Hare Krishna.” At the Wellness Centre on the previous day, someone had asked, “What do you do for animals who may be injured, hurt or damaged?” I then relay the story of Mrgari, the hunter who delighted in seeing other living entities in pain. A wandering sadhu, holy man, by the name of Narada, spotted the tortured animals. He was moved with compassion on seeing an arrow stuck to the bodies of a hare, a deer and a boar. It would have been better that they were dead than alive and in agony. Eventually Mrgari, the hunter, corrected his ways by the influence of the holy man.
Now, Pointy was not injured, but he seems traumatized. I’ve met his kind before in the wilderness, they move away from an intruder, climb a tree, or just defend by sitting there, ready to release a stinger needle. This guy, Pointy, had few defense weapons only close to his head. The rest was hair. It’s ironic then that I gave him that name.
To answer the question about animals who are challenged, I said, “Expose them to the mantra we just went through, Hare Krishna. Leave them with a powerful healing sound.” That explanation seemed to satisfy the person. I let Pointy be. It was good to know him.
In the evening I did a presentation about pilgrimage at the Canada Best Value Inn conference room. It was a more meager turn out than usual (last minute arrangement). However, those who came, focused and benefited from learning a verse from the Gita, 5.24. “One whose happiness is within, who is active and rejoices within and whose aim is inward, is actually the perfect mystic.”