the Great Forgetting & Remembering

Once upon a time, the earth was a part of everything on it. Connection with the earth was acknowledged in song & dance, in ceremony & creed. The earth was known as The Great Mother From Whom All Things Flow Forth. Before building homes or starting new businesses, humans would have intense rituals embracing their need to have the protection & support of Mother Earth- for without her blessing, nothing would flourish.

Mother Earth had many songs in these times. There were songs for harvesting. Songs for planting. Songs for sadness & grief. Songs for love. Songs of patience & songs of courting. There were songs for birth & songs of death. And Mother Earth was included in all of these songs. There was always weeping & laughter in the land, but everyone knew they were held by Mother Earth and so, whether stupefied with sadness or howling with joy, they each found comfort in her strong embrace.

Young men, Old women, new babies, and everyone in between honored Mother Earth. It wasn’t anyone’s job to speak for her, to mention her or to honor her; Each and every member of the land, from birth until death, spoke with adoration and humility in her heart about The Great Mother From Whom All Things Flow Forth. For it was truly apparent that everything came from her hand and went back to her body. This was The Great Cycle and everyone knew themselves as inextricably a part of it.

There were the traders, the mothers, the wisdom carriers, the artisans, the troubadours, the homeless, the farmers, and many more facets of the society which played roles in its function and all of these thanked & honored Mother Earth. Not one, except maybe the farmers & the wisdom carriers, had a greater or more intimate esteem for Mother Earth, for each of them, from the day they were born until the day they died, drank from her streams, ate the bounty from her lap, felt her wind in their face, and climbed all over her body dancing, limping, crawling, singing, weeping, lauding. Each of them knew themselves inextricably a part of her Presence. And this is the way it always was.

This was the way it always was, until it was slowly this way no more. It’s hard to say when the shift happened, when the earth stopped being a part of everything on it. The deer and wind, streams and tree frogs, lightening and spiders certainly remained with the earth in it, but something started to happen to the minds of the humans. Slowly, over time & person by person to family by family to tribe by tribe, the humans started to count the things of the earth, which before they had seen as a gift to them, as their right. And they forgot to give thanks & honor Mother Earth. Slowly the men, because they were physically stronger & in fear of the women’s power & sexuality (which are often so closely intertwined), started to treat their wives & daughters, mothers & grandmothers as if it was their right to lord over them, as if the women were there to serve them. And they enforced this through violence, violation & punishment.

Slowly, slowly people started to forget that the earth was a part of them; that they were a part of the earth and that they were all equals. Tribes started to see themselves as inherently different; as if from a different place, as if different species. People no longer saw themselves as siblings of one human family, no matter the color of their skin. Instead, certain skin colors were prized over others & the dominating group would make the “others” subservient to them through laws, violation, violence and punishment. Slowly, slowly as the human mind forgot what the human body & heart had always known, humans no longer thought of one another as kin, but as enemies conquesting for resources.

What was once a gift to give thanks to Mother Earth for, like precious stones & jewels from the earth or conch shells, feathers, fine bone & wood pieces, became objects of a hoarding contest. Whoever can take the most of these things, becomes the most powerful and therefore has the ability to control the others. Slowly, slowly people forgot that it wasn’t always this way – the faint murmurings of the heart that not only was another way possible, but it was the way things used to be: a life of connection, abundance, togetherness, sharing & caring, gratitude and respect for one another & Mother Earth- this whisper of heart & body became nearly unbelievable. This murmur became something the dominating controllers scoffed at.

And so, though children born from the heart of the earth & from the stars came with these ancient secrets on their lips, the dominating controllers silenced & shamed them and kept telling the story of greed, one-upmanship, exploitation, and competition. They controlled the media sources where everyone got their information & told stories of fear & of war. Technology & machines took the place of human contact and while they sped up The Progress, thousands of species became extinct, waters & air became dangerously polluted, soil was poisoned & degraded, food started to be a specialized lab experiment and was no longer the thing of every backyard & wars over Mother Earth’s resources became commonplace. Children’s voices were not heard & a child was very fortunate if they were able to remember some of the whispers about being a Child of The Great Mother From Whom All Things Flow Forth. At night, masses of humans would feel great tremors of sadness from within & so alcohol, cigarettes, heroin, meth, abuse & violence were the strong distractors away from their feelings of sadness, which were really cries of remembrance from their heart, from their bones, which remembered that they were a part of Mother Earth.

For Mother Earth never stopped crying out to all that was a part of her, to everything that was on her, eating from her body & drinking from her veins the streams. She spoke through plants, through dreams, through children & to the human’s minds in the evenings as another sun set, as this was a time when the people, finished with their labor of the day, were particularly vulnerable for remembering as the veil was thin between the imagination & the heart.

And The Great Mother From Whom All Things Flow Forth has gotten through to many of her children, which is how I am writing this story at all. She has whispered to me through my blood & bones which are fueled by her body, by her vegetables & animal flesh, through her sporiforous mushrooms & her seaweed, and her water and berries– through all of these things which fuel my body, her body is able to speak to me through my cells. She reminds me that this is the way forward, in remembering what once was and still is, yet has been forgotten – in remembering this connection with our Mother Earth so much that one day I remember it into existing again.

 

a creative re-telling of our origin, kind-of inspired by daily post.

our visions → new structures: this is all experiment

i realized something this morning about stepping forward. sometimes i lack the confidence. i have strong visions and dreams, but in order for them to be manifested i need total confidence, which is hard to muster because everything is and can only be at this point an experiment. no one knows the way forward. there are infinite ways forward. this is the boon and the bane. we are all like forest pilgrims wandering along trails at twilight. yes, the dawn will come, but first we must each walk through that dark night.

and it’s not like our parent’s parent’s paths where to be x (a firefighter, a nurse, a statistician, a professor, a factory-worker, etc) you took the knowable & set steps of a + b to reach a known end. the past systems are inherently based on that which i do not choose to support. cops & the government are corrupt. being a professor means jumping through so many hoops before i can say what i want to say- and then can i even say it? when i’m a doctor, tell me that i am not subject to all the the bureaucratic bullshit, that i’ll not be subject to the insurance or pharma companies or the time-crunches- that i’ll truly get to sit with my patients. that being a mainstream production farmer doesn’t mean the pillaging and raping of our soils and sullying of our waters. that if i’m going to be a 5th grade teacher, that i’ll actually teach the untruths they teach kids in schools- that i’d ever be willing to stand through that. these are the structures which currently keep society going, but just like our unsustainable economy, they are going to crumble, crumble. the truth rising within us cannot stand the compromise.

and new visions, more earth-centered, people-centered visions of justice & beauty have to take their place. experiments, truly. and because we don’t know the steps from a to b (we haven’t been there before), it takes a leap of faith to get there. and, unlike in the past, the path is not pre-planned steps forward resulting in a known outcome. the path is circuitous, winding, currently unknown- tested and changed as we go- unending. this calls for great levels of flexibility, ingenuity, humor, collaboration, strength and resolve. this calls for stepping into the possibility of failure, which is one of the greatest taboos in our culture.

if a doctor fails, she loses her job. if a so-called expert of our culture fails, what happens to their reputation? it drops accordingly. failure is the biggest no-no in an expert culture because it points to lack of competency, which calls into question this seemingly unshakeable cultural framework from which our confidence in the experts is derived. but as many are finding out, doctors don’t actually know what they’re doing. yes, they are trained and can know & do certain things, but hopefully, as trained as they are, they’ll readily admit the fact that the human organism is still a mystery to human understanding. that interactions happen holistically (if you interact with one part of the human system, other parts will be effected; say the thyroid is not separate from the adrenals is not separate from the heart & nervous system) and therefore are basically uncontrollable in their essence.

 

read the rest at the original posting.

freestyle envisioning, homesteading 1234

i want a place to plant perennials. herbs. i want herbs all over the place- except not where they’re not supposed to be, like growing in the vegetable places. trees, a place to hear the sound of wind in the trees & sit in the shade. a stream, a stream to feel fresh cool clean water flow by me. water i can use on the plants. water we can filter and drink. a straw bale home with curves & nooks, built organically as if out of our palm, the shape of a palm or a kidney. maybe parts underground. a goat. 2 goats. 3 goats & birds. chirping wild. clucking, digging at soil, domestic layers. fresh eggs. maybe a pond. swims & filtering plants to keep it clean & water plants to keep it beautiful & filter the local pond ecosystem. water catchment for rain & greywater for plants. vermiculture for feeding worms our scraps & making compost. compost. mounds and mounds of compost. chickens scratching & sunlight filtering in. hard work. hard hard work that probably makes us question what we’ve gotten into. then elation. then elation & hard work mixed that makes us remember what it is to be alive. to try. to be & possibly to fail, but to get up again.

for the stuff that is in is is the same stuff that is in the stars. and the same force that is in us is the same force which causes the seasons to run. the same force which fuels the sun. the same abundant energy of the cosmos redirected through our hands, fueled from our hearts & wishes & strongest emotions fueled into action. into honed vision, shot like an arrow from the centers of our manifesting minds into the heart of the land. into taking a stand. creating the best version of our selves that we can. hope against hope. fresh breaths keeping us going. we’re stepping into the unknowing. failure was never so possible, neither was completely everything-we-ever-wanted.

in the land of home: two graces

Tonight Ini & I had a heart council. New Moon in Taurus. Time of earthy, grounded, materialistic beginnings. We follow in the tradition we learned at OUR ecovillage by a teacher from the Ojai Foundation. It opens us up, lets more mystery into our conscious awareness, usually heals & clarifies. Tonight we did it in the bath. Bright blue skies transform after the rain. The grass is bright green. The sun sets casting a mysterious hue.

We hold a talking piece in our hands throughout the council. It signifies, this is my turn to talk. Tonight we used a big chunk of citrine. Inherent in heart council is speaking from the heart as well as not planning what you’re going to say before the talking piece comes to you. This way container truths are able to rise organically, informed from one person to the next. And how easy is it to truly listen when we know what we are going to say? In this way, council encourages the inherent value of each person’s wisdom in the moment. As I said, magical, simple & profound truths can come from this.

 

read the rest here at rainbowbridgetotheheart.com.

dominating dreamers & the caring contingent: the right to dream

today, as ini and i sat on the mound in the backyard, i realized that i felt a certain level of lack-of-rights in my life. due to upbringing & internalized assumptions & even spiritual belief-systems which i had chosen to take on at various times in my life, i didn’t feel a right to anything. as i sat there and thought about myself and heard ini reflect attributes of my character back to me i had a realization: 

i am a healing force in the world. sure, i have it within me to be chaotic or even destructive, but i don’t choose this as a manner of course. i choose my character to be one of healing, seeking to choose the wise path, chaos within healing perspective, having a wide perspective, caring & nurturing, standing up for the downtrodden without voices (whether person, vegetable, mineral, fungal, waterway, forest, animal, etc). i have been looking at my assumptions about whether or not i have a right to dream (and where a belief comes from that i don’t have a right to dream), create and enact on my dreams. whether my dreams are worthy or that i am a deserving dreamer. i have found that within there is a fear of acting on dreams, of taking a stand, of acting toward my highest callings and deep-seeded dreams. why this i (i have a few ideas) is getting more clear and with awareness it’s also becoming clearer on how to step forward out of this old-belief into greater expression, self confidence, embodiment (breathe!), and action towards dream-manifestation. yet here’s the realization:

i am not a dominator type. if anything, i’ve needed to grow boundaries for my naturally care-taking, nurturing, one-ness based empathetic character. i dream for the collective. i work with a transpersonal vision. and yet i feel a lack of entitlement to dream, to envision and to act on my dreams. while many in the world who have smaller visions which are damaging to ecosystems, indigenous peoples, and nearly totally focused on a monetary-economy feel a complete right to dream, envision and manifest their desires into reality.

this was a big one for me to piece together into such simple wording earlier. why is it that dominator culture inherently feels the right to take advantage of and even exploit other people (and ecosystems), while i question my right as a caring & respectful human being to manifest my dreams in reality? this is a laughable concept for the books!

spirit connection: the place

me as human is an energy being, a creature with 2 legs & 2 arms. i can only do so much, really. me as a human only has so much capacity, yet through this capacity i can hold the space for something so much greater than myself. this is what i feel called to do.

i want to hold space for a space to flow through me. i want to hold the fort down of a place where the following can be found:

  • spaciousness: to feel spirit & breathe deep
  • ancient: reflecting deep cyclical forces from which we all originate; not for quick profit, not for quick anything
  • mater: deep presence of connection with mama earth
  • meeting place: where people can congregate & grow
  • home & hearth: feeling of warmth, coziness
  • wilderness: large pieces of wild land (undisturbed by humans)
  • purity: clean air & protection from pollution
  • art: expression, vision, creativity, innovation
  • secret nooks
  • streams: fresh, clean, flowing water
  • mystery room
  • abundance: food forests, alignment with earth’s ways, permaculture gardens

this place reflects spirit connection. i am just a human with 4 limbs, a brain, a pumping heart. yet i could hold the space for infinite forces to move through me. may this space have the chance to grow through me and others. give me the courage to be embodied and hold the space for this. amen.

of the hardest things to do: taking a stand in your unique creative self

What are the hardest things to do? I would wager that it is the things that the outside world does not endorse. People are given more than food as they grow up. From infancy we are fed ideas about “the way things are”. Children are naturally free-spirited, full of imagination and endlessly creative growing up. Yet over time often the destructive voices surrounding them from youth tear down the creative penchants of a child’s natural way of being. Voices of poverty, practicality, peer pressure, pain, parental guidance, etc pound on the door of their young selves and replace the imagination, shame the creative, limitless expression and drown out and curtail the free-spirited nature. It should not go unnoticed that it is very difficult to rebuild these back once they are torn down in youth, but it is possible. It is very possible. And the hope of our world and our own spirits depend upon it.

People, as anthropologists find worldwide, are naturally creators of culture. It is an organizational structure upon which the very foundations of our lives are set. We would be lost, disorganized, chaotic without it. Yet it is the role of the dreamer within each of us to critically face the faults of the culture, the chinks in “the way things are” to set them more right. Certainly there is no static perfection available in the universe, yet step by step, better by better, more apt, creative, healthy adaptations can be found.

I learned the other day that mammals were very small in the time of their genesis in the evolutionary transition from reptile toward mammal. Large reptiles were the rulers of the land, so the mammals hid underground and learned to hunt at night to escape death. After the mass extinction, mammals, who successfully hid in their tunnel systems to protect themselves from the radiation and other extreme conditions, were able to successively grow in size given the absence of the large reptiles. They terrifically adapted to their climate. Before they were kept in check by the other animals in their environment, yet grew when that variable was gone. Likewise, in the presence of negative voices, limited thinking, overwork, stuck mindsets and reinforced, outdated patterns, the imagination, creative solutions or alternatives to everyday problems do not have room to grow. Harboring and nurturing a creative idea is a challenge akin to seeing a dandelion grow through a crack in the concrete of a busy sidewalk. In the desert. In midsummer.

Growing through “the way things are” to create anything alternative is always a miracle such as this. Mindsets are one of the hardest things to stand up against, grow through and bloom from. Imagine a young child raised in poverty, strapped with financial responsibility and entrenched in familial ways of being which both encourage and stifle the child. As the child grows perhaps the imagination isn’t encouraged toward “dreaming” or envisioning different solutions for everyday problems for a myriad of reasons. Slowly over time the creative edge atrophies. I suggest that it never in fact dies, but can numb over or be cast away into a forgotten nook in some inner closet.

For a child in a situation such as this, say even raised in a financially depressed town in need of many practically creative solutions to create a better life for the town and families, it is nearly impossible to bring to light creative options. Everything that makes up “the way things are” is in opposition to this kid’s ideas. The family chides the kid when the ideas are brought up and even if the family doesn’t discourage the child, the harsh reality of the situation will. As my dad will say when I talk about the necessity of creative problem-solving in the face of ugly “realities”, “It’s great that you are thinking these things – you are very privileged. Think of the mother with three kids who has to work to put food on the table and pay bills. She doesn’t have time to think so much.” While this may be true (I honestly can’t say whether the person in this situation has the time to think as I do), in any event I can see the difficulty of “everyone’s” situation. Even if we do not witness and are a part of impoverished situations growing up, environmental pressures push us away from creative dreaming and toward fulfilling practical cultural norms.

How easy is it for any one of us to stand up in the face of norms, especially when they are tied to economic realities? Cultural norms are some of the most innocuous, entrenched, hard-to-shift patterns in existence. As Ani Difranco says of capitalism, “it’s as easy as breathing for us all to participate.” Oftentimes we don’t readily have a choice to be a part of something other than the pervasive norm because norms are the inherently organizing structures of our cultures- we produce them (or go along with them) without thought. They are “the way things are.” Yet, what if “the way things are” is not just unsuitable to the strong creative dreamers on the planet? What if the pervasive, ever-present “way things are” is actually killing life on the planet? Threatening the existence and perpetuity of our very culture? What if “the way things are” is harmful to life? To us? To animals, ecosystems, air, water….?

Truly, this isn’t a What if – this is a wake up! Wake the fuck up! The current “way things are” is in fact, LOOK AROUND PEOPLE: harmful, damaging, threatening, suicidal toward actual life. Many of the habit patterns founding western civilization are not encouraging the furtherance of life and, in fact, they are downright discouraging to the empowerment of people, the protection and prevalence of wildlife and clean air and water and healthy soils. The facts to support this are endless and I for one am continually re-surprised that more people are blind to these basic, open-your-eyes facts. Or if not turning a blind eye, unable to take beneficial action toward shifting these norms.

So, yes, I get the challenge of creative problem-solving in the face of a problem so large it’s as easy as breathing to participate. So innocuous, so prevalent it’s hard to see. I get that a dandelion growing through a crack in a concrete slab is a miracle. I get that to face and shift norms is like asking a creative idea to grow through that slab-like concrete of the mind and is nearly impossible. But it is possible. I have watched my own mind shape and shift over the last 3 years into a malleable belief-in-creativity-chamber. My creative-muscles were nearly atrophied or at least ignored, and I have seen the instigation of Belief rise again in my system. I know that it is possible to make a mind-set dance and swerve. The unexpected is possible. Life’s beauty is confirmation of that. Our greatest honor while on this planet is to take place in the co-creation of this beauty that exists as Life.

We are not separate from this Life. We are not here watching it happen, as observers or consumers of some great play created by some people other than ourselves (though the media industry would have us believe this). We are Life. We are the creators of our realities. And I don’t mean this in a new-agey at all.

Who opened that new shop in your town? Do you think it was someone so much different than you with super human capacities? Who wrote the book on the best-sellers list? Someone so far removed from you that they are in a different category? I posit that between all of us there is not so much difference in us beyond our choices. Our choices are the stuff of which we are made. Not our thoughts, but our actions. Too many people die filled with dreams. If I can stop one case of that happening in an individual human, I will find a piece of personal happiness. Too many people live lives of… how does it go, of quiet desperation. To hell with that! If you don’t believe in your dreams, who will? If you don’t believe in your one crazy idea, who will? Do you think it is your job to sit back and criticize the actors on our world-stage? Do you somehow see yourself as separate from or different than those actors – something inherently different in you that makes you an observer or consumer instead of a co-creator or conspirator in the “way things are”?

This is a call to arms, a call to action. A call to hands … in the garden, on alternative-fuel engines, on pieces of artwork & handy crafts, writings of inspiration, healthy foods for our families, the list goes on. This is a calling forth of the creative piece of your soul that may be numbed or dormant, but is in no way gone. This is a calling forth of your imagination, that piece of you that served you so well throughout childhood and then fell away as deadlines took its place. Neither I, we, nor our world can suffer a field of players too concerned with passionless things and to-dos. I cannot suffer myself this way.

This is a call to arms, hands, feet. Cultivate your creative nature every day. Believe in impossible ideas. If you have impossible ideas they are within you for a reason. You think only other people can act on their ideas? Why is this? Are other people more deserving dreamers than you? Did someone rob you of your divine right to co-create this reality we are all a part of?

If so, it is time to establish this divine creatorship as a right you also are able to rest in. No matter poor, middle-class or upper-class upbringing (or somewhere inbetween or off-the-chart), we all were perhaps faced with voices discouraging us from living our dreams. Monetary security is only one cat-call from “the way things are” away from our dreaming selves. This “way things are” is continually re-instituted by people who don’t even realize they are refurbishing a “way things are.” It’s time to recreate a “way things are” – many “ways things are” – that are friendly to fish and fauna, all creatures here as friends, as much as possible. We are not innocuous bystanders passing time here. We are here to dream and land these dreams in our lives. This is our mission here. Give me a hand, will ya?