Along a mountain pathway, I came to a place where the trail split. I had been climbing some time already, across rocky ground, sharp and ugly. Away in the distance, when I paused to look up, the sky and horizon showed me unreachable beauty. But close at hand, the terrain had only scrapes and exhaustion to give me.
At the split in the trail, I faced a choice. To one side the way became even steeper, but led up past boulders and jagged outcrops toward a sunlit summit, where I knew from the guidebook that green trees and a bubbling spring could be found, along with a quaint little hiker's refuge that had been built there long ago. The other path led down, straighter and easier -- into the mouth of a cave. The shadows inside had an unhealthy cast, as though even light found the air of the cave stale ... debilitating.
Who makes the choice to descend into darkness, to be shut off from any offer of comfort, just because the pull of gravity makes that direction less an investment in effort? Who picks cold, blanketing blackness over a strenuous push toward achievement, toward the splendor of all the world?
The proper choice seems so obvious, does it not?
Climb the mountain. It is gorgeous up there. You will be able to see so far.
Climb the mountain.
Thank you, goddess of love, for the path that should so plainly be taken.