As I drove up the gravel road and later the dirt road off of the gravel road towards the alter I felt the wind pick up a bit. I was, after all, at the top of Shade Mountain. The sounds of animals rustling and birds talking filled my ears. Although it is back a dirt road it is accesible by car and the road is wide and easy to turn around at the end of. At the end of the road, low and behold, the alter it self.
It's not that majestic or imposing at first look but when you get out of your vehicle you immediately understand the impact that this alter has on the locals.
This is the view that I saw upon leaving my vehicle.
As I walked toward the alter I felt it immediately, just the sounds of the wind, the squirrels, the tree's swaying. The sounds of nature and the instant communal feeling with God. It is so peacefull and I felt so close to the energy of life. For those who do not care for the walls of a church this would be the perfect place of worship.
Feeling one with nature.
The sun was setting so my pictures of the view do not do it justice.
It's hard to explain the feeling of contentment I felt while I was visiting this local legend. Local churches of many denominations hold services here from time to time and there is a combined Easter Sunrise service. Marriages, funerals, special moments have all been graced at this out door altar. For me, it was quite a spiritual experience.
The sun setting through the trees as I drove out, down the mountain, back to the real world of stress, away from that strong, connective, energy I had felt there. I only hope I brought some of it back with me, I felt a bit replenished as I left.