Who speaks for the Earth?
The answer begins.
Those who first have “listened”,
Then somehow, in their own way, they convey that connection.
By “listening”, I mean a deep sensing and receiving more than any one of our physical senses. A listening with our whole being. Those who have listened inspire us to remember it in ourselves. Those who listen and notice where she has been hurt and like a mama bear, rise to her defense and advocate for her. Those whose life depends on her clean water, air and soil and whose home no longer has that. When we are hungry or thirsty, we are forced to speak. All of us could be in line for that woeful cry. It is when listening ends, suffering begins.
Those who listen come from many walks of life, most notably indigenous communities across the planet who have held onto their connection to the natural world despite the tremendous onslaught of the profit-driven enterprises who see their resources only in terms of gain. The historical oppression of indigenous populations is a tragic reality. Yet the earth itself is in their voice and hope emerges out of the pain: those rising to say ‘enough!”, the youth who are still close to the earth in their hearts are listening…and the elders who guarded their knowledge and share it, are listening. They keep sacred the connection they have. They protect their listening. They are teaching and defending and leading everywhere about this. One could say that they are the Earth’s own immune system activated. Look beyond the usual cacophony of news, and you will find these voices struggling to be heard.
We are all indigenous to the Earth, but many have forgotten this. Even when we don’t have a history with the land we directly live on, we can learn about it, build a relationship of respect by learning its waterways, its plants and animals, its weather patterns. We bring to our homes our own roots and draw from our unique blend of strengths and lessons, a lineage of all the lands our ancestors have loved. When we learn about our history and make new, healing relationships—we can transform the trauma to become part of the Earth’s immune system too. And as long as we do what is vital to keep this relationship alive, the earth’s message is in our voice. And if we keep listening. We can know what the Earth is saying.
But listening is not something we see practiced everywhere. We often don’t even know that we are not listening. So when we hear someone who speaks for the earth, our inner ear may be stirred and a memory invoked. It is an invitation. But how?
That memory invoked is one we all have, because we came in with the ability to feel our connection to life, we are all born with the ability to listen. As a child, I remember going out into nature with my bare feet and sensing deeply. I felt so connected. I felt I could hear what the birds were saying, what the mountains were teaching. What hurt another life hurt me. I could feel this web so strongly. The magic of this experience stayed with me into my adult life, as I did activities to nurture it. Creativity in the form of singing, dancing would weave into my nature excursions. I believe that all humans have this natural way of expressing, and when we are connected to nature, it erupts spontaneously. We are close to it as children and we keep it close by staying in touch with that creative spark within us. And it makes sense that creativity would keep us connected, because Nature itself is that creative energy.
So go out on the earth, sing, dance, play and remember you are her child always.
Yet in this age of information overload, multi media overwhelm, competing world views, propaganda offered as news, aka ‘fake news’, its no surprise that we are damped down and saturated to the point of no longer being able to stop, and if we can’t stop, we most certainly can’t listen.
Lately I have been feeling this acutely.
I’ve found myself slowly pulled into this vortex of information, even despite my best intentions and now I have been experiencing a ‘brain-ache’, a term I came up with to describe a persistent feeling of a pressure, confusion and heat in my prefrontal cortex area, something I believe is due to my brain working overtime to process all the input from my computer and smart phone and just all the busyness of life. It became so bad, I worried my head would explode. I experimented with limiting my exposure and have time away and do heart centered practices—and lo and behold, the ache went away!
Time to stop. Time to not be so busy. When did being busy become a status symbol? I have been longing for a stillness and peace that goes beyond my morning meditation, something that reconnects me to the web of life I am part of, the experience I remember having as a child and trying to keep alive. But now it has become fainter everyday I get lost and submerged in the world of human to human information. In this world of everyone speaking but few listening.
I long for my first mother, the Earth. To remember the feeling of being a child. Of singing and dancing with the wind. Where is she? A deep grief wells in my heart. I miss her so much. And, I imagine, you do too. Even if you don’t feel it…yet.
Ah, yes. It is this grief that leads me back home. I must cry to find her again. Let the tears flow and become the river that leads me home.
This grief calls for me to stop and remember, to unplug from the human made world of too much, to the natural world still dancing somewhere in my bones. She wants me back. She wants to sing to me again. She wants me to listen. Ok, yes! I must answer, I must return. She wants you too. She wants us all to listen.
And then, like the children we are, we will remember that we are her. When you remember that, you too will speak for her.
Now, excuse me while I leave this computer and go for a walk with bare feet.