“Contemplate the wonders of creation, the Divine dimension of their being, not as a dim configuration that is presented to you from a distance, but as the reality in which you live.” – Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook
Well, today is March Fourth, my favorite day of the year. You’re probably wondering why it is my favorite day. Well, I really don’t have a reason, it’s more of a “feel” thing. It’s kind of like a rallying cry – MARCH FORTH!!!!! – pumping a fist in the air, charging from the winter into the first warmings of spring. I love spring – my son, Dillon was born on the first full day of Spring in 1986.
I relish the new growth that begins to appear – the hills hint of color, slowly turning into an explosion of Crayola Crayons’ Spring Green. I talked last time about how we, like nature, must cultivate our inner selves to be able to make changes in our lives; building on that concept is our relationship with mother earth herself.
Now, forgive me for a moment while I step up onto my soapbox.
We humans are the most intelligent species on the earth – our progress through the milennia has produced amazing things. Just think of what Frank W. Buckles, the last American World War I veteran who died last week, saw in his 110 years alone! And, maybe our progress is part of the problem and one of the reasons that many of us humans give no thought to abusing the earth on which we live- we no longer see ourselves as part of nature, but somehow removed – with our lofty attitude of independence, self-sufficiency and smugness.
We used to understand our connectedness – we planted gardens for our fruits and vegetables and preserved them ourselves for the winter ahead. We hunted for our meat and fowl and fished the waters, giving thanks to the animals that gave their lives so we might be nourished; now our connection to the food we eat is separated by the plastic-wrapped packages, boxes and cans of the grocery store. We used to walk the hills and valleys to get to where we were going, enjoying the journey; now we speed by in a blur, always in a hurry. We used to respect the gifts of the earth; now we take all the goodness and beauty for granted, operating under the the erroneous idea that we OWN the planet – not understanding that we are killing the goose that lays the golden eggs of our survival. Native peoples have always been quick to give thanks and offer prayers of gratitude to the bounty of the earth and how it sustains their every need. Our modern society feels entitled.
Okay, stepping down off of soapbox, now…
And, we feel overwhelmed, stressed, depressed, separated from other human beings, and unhappy with life.
My husband, Michael, and I were watching the squirrels and birds from our kitchen window recently and we were laughing at how we viewed the lives of these creatures when we were children. I used to climb trees a lot as a kid – loved to sit up high and read Trixie Belden mysteries, feeling the breeze and the gentle swaying of the giant that held me. I would wonder how in the WORLD the squirrels and birds got along without owning any stuff – no TV, no books, no clothes. How’d they get food, where were their houses and their toys? Now we envy them – no BAGGAGE, no stuff to worry about – only inherent trust that what they need will show up. No wonder they hop around without a care in the world!
Now I understand that most of us wouldn’t want to go back to living in trees and gathering nuts and berries – I enjoy my freshly ground coffee and my Kindle, too – but my point is that we need to be re-connected to our mother earth to restore our sense of security and belonging, our sense of abundance and gratitude, and our sense of our own beauty and worthiness.
Walk into the woods this week or a park near your house; pick out a tree and just look at it. Really look at it. Think about all the storms it’s weathered, how it’s lived for decades, maybe hundreds of years, it’s life depending on the abundance of the earth. And, look at its beauty – even though it’s probably bare of leaves. You’re part of this, too. Feel the sense of stillness, a sense of grounded-ness and a feeling that all is right with the world. Take a deep breath….Exhale. Now, March Forth!
Please leave your comments, questions and ideas below. And, remember, “It is never too late to be what you might have been.” -George Eliot