This reflection kicks off a three-part exploration of the unknown in our inner worlds, sometimes called the shadow. Part 1 takes up the question “What Is Shadow?” while parts 2 and 3 follow the questions “What Do We Do with Shadow?” and “What Is the Gift of Shadow?”
When I turned 30, I decided that I wanted to complete a triathlon. One problem: I did not know how to swim. I wasn’t scared of the water and I could stay afloat, but the most fruitful results of my childhood swim lessons were a goofy-looking breast stroke that didn’t involve putting my head under the water and a “little bird, big bird, fly.” The latter was basically laying on my back, flapping my arms, and propelling myself (slowly) through the water. These were not the ways of a triathlete.
I want to feed people the way she did because eating is, as our fall guest speaker Norman Wirzba writes, “a profoundly spiritual act.” What we eat and how we eat—both individually and collectively—reflect our gratitude, our stewardship, our generosity, our joy, and our love.