This afternoon I visited my favorite local beach to do a little community service. I walked along the beach and picked up trash. Sadly, there was lots of trash to pick up. Even though the weather is turning colder every day and hence the beach is less populated, we still get a lot of debris that washes ashore from boaters in the bay. I ended up filling two kitchen trash bags full of trash, mainly beer/soda cans, soda bottle caps, cigarette butts, and food wrappers. Some of the most interesting items that I came across included a bottle of bleach, a birthday balloon, and an unopened bag of chips. Sigh.
But the reason I wanted to share my clean-up experience in a blog posting today, was a small item I came across. I almost missed it at first, because it was crumpled in a wet ball and slightly buried in the sand. As soon as it caught my eye, I knew something was unusual about this item.
The item was several pieces of lined paper. It was a letter someone wrote to Yamaya, an African Sea Goddess. Now, I have to admit that I did read the first line of the letter, before I realized that I was violating this person's privacy and betraying the Goddess she was calling to. I immediately stopped reading the letter, and folded it up into the palm of my hand.
Luckily, there were no one nearby on the beach, because they would have though me a little mad. I was suddenly overcome the letter writer's despair. I dropped to my knees into the brown beach sand, clutching the letter and stayed there for a few minutes to ground out the energy I had unintentionally absorbed. I buried the letter deep within the sand, and asked Yamaya to hear this person's request.
Honestly, I wasn't sure what else I should do. So I continued on my way.
I guess the really odd thing is that this is not the first time I have come across someone's letter to a deity. About 6 years ago, a gust a wind blew someone's letter to Jesus next to my car in a parking lot. I was not sure what to do, then, either.
What would you do if you came across someone's personal prayer to a deity? Would you read it? Would you leave it where you found it? Would you dispose of it?