Namaste dear Warrior, I bow to you as we gather once again to share stories along our journeys. Over time and the course of these articles, it has been my wish to inspire you with examples of creative projects that are today, impacting the future of our world.
You may have resonated with one already, or found your own, or you may still be searching for a call to strike a chord in your heart. Could it be the environment, animal rights, wildlife, health and welfare, schooling and education, oppressed people or cultures or nations, refugees, underprivileged children, or raising the level of consciousness within your own society? Fortunately or unfortunately, there is much work to be done, hence, you have infinite choice. Your service can take many forms. It may take over your life, or it may fit alongside your day job or family commitments. You may even decide to do something all together as a family or it may be a monetary contribution. Whatever it is, however it manifests, it will not only fulfil you with purpose and meaning, but benefit others too. As your self esteem grows, your energy levels will too. As a result of your new vibrancy, your social circle will also expand as you connect with others who share your passion and stimulate you spiritually, intellectually, creatively. And as you shine your light, you show the way for others to shine theirs too.
Committing to a cause is no easy task. It helps if you have a vision of how you would like to world to be and connect to that personally or professionally through your life experiences. It also helps if you intuitively feel a strong need to protect or preserve. For instance, many people feel very passionate about our environment, as we experience radical changes in our climate and witness phenomenal natural disasters in all corners of this earth. The reality of our ecological state is that much closer to home than it has ever been before. On top of that, much of the current talk and research shows an intensification of what is already happening, painting a devastating picture of what is yet to come. Back in 1991, Sjöö and Mor, authors of The Great Cosmic Mother: Rediscovering the Religion of the Earth, gave us this particularly graphic portrayal:
“The truth is that we are living on a planet undergoing prolonged torture, that is, a huge, fully sensate creature being subjected to an infinite variety of murders. She has been dynamited, strip-mined, she is gassed and sprayed with chemicals. She is riddled with wells for oil, her blood, sucked out to the last black drop. Her brain, which is the sea, is dumped full of poison. The air, through which she breathes, becomes a thick toxic cloud. All the heavy metals and radioactive elements, once distributed sparsely throughout her body, are now leached into her bones, into her fleshly soil, into her womb; stored in lethal concentrations, drunk by roots, groundwater, tongues, they will pass down death to her remaining creatures for generations. Meanwhile, Nature’s free and relatively wholesome, holistic energies of sun, wind, thermal heat, water, moon-tidal, human and organic compost are ignored, rejected.”
As important as it is to be conscious of how we, as in one of 7 billion citizens, consumers, professionals, and parents are walking upon this earth, it is also easy to be bewildered and overwhelmed when we read such truths. Yes, we need to be accountable to our actions or inactions and aim for sustainability. But to live a life that is sustainable, wise, and balanced, we need to be positive, perceptive, and critical thinkers, innovative and conscious in the way that we make our decisions and behave in the world. For our imprints to be softer, we also need to be more spacious within ourselves; accepting, adaptable, resilient. As Mark Coleman says: “Sustainability is self defined and then magnified and played out in greater society”.
Taking responsibility is not useful nor effective if we are overcome with powerlessness. There is an immense amount of fear, frustration, and anger already in the collective. And the collective is created by individual conditioned and unconscious minds. We impact it as much as it impacts us. In fact, it is us. There is no “out there”—we are part of the creation, the consciousness that we witness around us. Radical … yet empowering to know that we can make a difference. So while we maintain an awareness of the traumas taking place on the earth, and while we choose wholesome actions for ourselves, we also need to resist being emotionally seduced by the drama and the negativity of what is occurring. It may sound like a paradox, but with much conscious presence, and as we let go of our own hurts, it is more and more possible for us to focus on the nourishing aspects—the beauty, the life force, the fertility, the blossoming—of the creation around us. In doing so, we generate more and more gratitude in our hearts for the gifts we receive from the land and begin to project this rich aliveness out, in turn creating the new earth. This is the medicine that will ultimately heal our planet, and all of us on it.
Being our very own shamans in this way, and shape-shifting our reality does require us to have a different “vision” and an ability to tap into the powerful life forces that are behind the mundane. For this, we need to build the momentum of our spiritual work, to gather more strength as Spiritual Warriors, more discipline to stand strong and look beyond what is visible to the naked eye. A good practice alongside our regular meditation is to learn to fix our attention on the formless rather than on the forms around us. Focusing on forms keeps us trapped in the ego and thinking mind, the fear based mentality of seeing ourselves as a separate being to the rest of creation. When we learn to concentrate and zoom in on the formless, we tap into a different faculty, an expansion of our third eye and we awaken our ability to see a different realm of truth.
So I invite you, dear Warrior, to lie flat on your back on the fresh green grass, or soft earth, under a tree that is vital with strength and grace, and connect with the power of Nature’s impulse to create and to grow. Let yourself fall into the arms of the Mother, feel yourself being held tenderly by the power of her gravity. Look up and focus not on the tree’s branches and leaves, no matter how spectacular they may be, but on the gaps in between the varying shades of beauty, the gaps where there is space. Listen to the song of the birds but focus instead on the gaps between or behind those sounds, as sweet as they may be. Learn to see what is hidden, to hear what is silent and feel what beats within you … bringing your heart’s rhythm in unison to that of the Earth.