Fan K'uan: Travelers Among Mountains and Streams
It took several years for me to realize who my first spiritual mentor was. For that I had to awaken to what memory had resonated for me in the Sung landscapes. It was a recollection of an experience I'd had when I was five years old. My parents had taken me on a vacation to Yosemite, where I played at the foot of giant pines, hiked to thundering waterfalls, and looked at vistas of granite mountains sheared by ancient glaciers. For a child who had never before been out of dessicated Los Angeles those sights, scents and feelings were a true spritual awakening. It was direct and unmediated by thoughts or conventions; the sort of total experience only a child can have.That was what I had seen again in the Sung landscapes, and that recollection was what had awakened my spiritual longing. The earth herself had been my first spiritual teacher.
Yosemite: Vernal Falls