A Different Kind of Knitter

I know I’m a different kind of knitter.

I received a message a few days ago asking when I would go back to talking about knitting.


I understand the reason for that question, but my own personal reasoning for writing about knitting has always been about something more interior. This isn’t a blog that you read to learn about stitches, but where you learn where those stitches can take you, emotionally and spiritually. I believe that.

You see, the action is one thing, the purpose and intention of that action is completely different. That’s why I always say knitters are the kindest of people because they’re always making things for someone else, or why I comment on how knitters tend to be calmer because they have that quiet space while they are counting out rows. Or why knitters are more complex people because the stitches they are working often mirror what their soul’s are trying to tell them. (Gauge too tight…..too stressed. Gauge too loose, uninspired and a bit bored.)

So, I’ve never really discussed stitches on this blog, but rather, where that stitch can take you….if you listen, if you open yourself to quiet, if you believe that what you are making in your hands now is of some beautiful benefit to someone in need. Those are the conversations you get when you come to this blog.

You can teach someone to knit….or you can inspire them to knit.

You shouldn’t be surprised if you read, “While I was knitting a thought crossed my mind,” or even better, “This life of mine would not have been saved had it not been for a knit and purl.”

Closer to dawn I find myself knitting best; it’s where a new day begins….a new project. All behind you is erased, yesterday is over….now, what good things can you strive for with your stitches, your actions, today? Yes, I believe that, and love to break from sleep early in the morning to greet the sun, to watch it tenderly rise and then burst into promising brilliance….all while knitting rounds from one bamboo needle to another, knowing that I appreciate the return of the light, the promise of a new day, because of my knitting and what it has taught me.

A knitter’s soul is a little different: it recognizes and promotes tolerance, patience, giving. It’s just who we are. We create for others to keep them warm, to shield them from harm, to welcome them into the world, or to show we love them.

Knitting taught me something about patience and correction, self confidence, and completion. Too many projects get tossed to the side and never finished, don’t they? A little bit about our hopes in life, isn’t it?

So, yes, this blog is a bit more on the spiritual side of knitting, rather than the physical. It is through my craft that I learned something special about what we do with our actions and how it affects others.

I will talk more about knitting, yes….but in a different way.

A lot of people ask about my monastery days, my references to monks. In my 20’s I went on a strange spiritual journey all brought about because of a terrifying nightmare I had while sleeping on the beach in Key West. That was a terrible time in my life. I was trying to die. Slowly.

But, then, something miraculous happened. Because of that painful nightmare I started to question, ask, search….and after much pain, I started hoping, and loving, and enjoying….and living.

In 2006 I wrote about that experience for myself, through diaries I had kept. It hasn’t been in print for a while, so I decided to publish it again. Because it reminds me of how someone is first born physically to the world, then to the intellectual society around them, then with some hope, to the knowledge of their soul.

foefrontSo, if you’d like to read “FOE” (and I do so hope you’d like to)  you can click here, or on the photo. I’m calling it an Anniversary Edition because it has been 10 years since the guide post of my path was laid. If you liked “Will Knit For Food,” then I’m sure you will truly enjoy “FOE.” Consider it a prequel.

“FOE” is hard in the beginning, dark….but then comes the light and it ends with the great moment of truth, this wonderful feeling of belonging to the human community, to this moment where I finally did it, I finally turned to the moments of my dark past and said,”……

well, I guess you’ll just have to read to find out.


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  1. Dear sir, I stumbled upon on your blog, via a Facebook share. I’ve read a few. I’m a beginner knitter who started getting to make prayer shawls with some ladies of my church. I never looked su knitting the way you do.

    I stopped, disappointed in my results. Yet after reading this blog you have inspired me to again.

    Thank you. I pray God brings you peace and the strength to keep knitting and writing. I can’t afford much either. I struggle too financial. Right now I can only offer prayers and a thank you, to inspire me to keep gong.

  2. Gregory, I’m so glad to see you writing about what knitting brings us, how it humanizes us and turns us (at the best of times) into the people we are meant to be. I’ve always thought about these things, but not spoken of them to others, not even with other knitters. It gives me such a jolt of joy to read that you hold these same thoughts and values about doing this most patient and meditative of crafts. Thank you so much/

    1. Well, thank you! I love reading all of your comments, you’ve been here for so long now and I can’t thank you enough. You are such a dear. It is a quiet, meditative craft, isn’t it? Our own version of Buddhist Mandalas.

  3. A person can find any number of blogs discussing stitches and patterns.. There are few blogs that talk about the spirituality of knitting.. Keep on doing what you’re doing Gregory..

  4. You just keep writing about whatever pops into your head. That is the whole benefit of the blog. There are plenty of other blogs about stitches, and even they bleed over into life…

  5. I woke up today looking for inspiration and I found it! Thank you Gregory for speaking from the heart ~ you are a sweet and gentle soul. Your words truly touch me 🙂

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