Santa Barbara Soul

“Not all the ravages caused by our merciless age are tangible ones.  The subtler forms of destruction, those involving only the human spirit, are the most to be dreaded.” – Paul Bowles, December 1981

I recently met a woman whose health has been severely compromised by an acute and extremely rare chemical sensitivity. She’s been driven from the home which took she and her husband 18 years of their own skill, creativity, and vision to build. Not an inch of the home has gone unturned in an effort to make it more habitable; not a doctor unvisited. It’s been four years since she’s been able to live in her space.

One might expect to find such a person out of their mind and miserable, self absorbed and destitute. Quite the contrary. What I find in my new friend Susanna is a spirit full of compassion, overflowing with empathy, and a feisty spirit of determination. She seeks solitude and peace of mind daily on the trails of the Los Padres National Forest and the sands of the South Coast of the Pacific.

I am reminded that, if we make the conscious decision to make it so, all things can and will work together for our good; that the power of mother earth to heal, if not our physical bodies, but our spirits, is greater than we know.

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