Our natural world

As a druid I have always been deeply connected to the natural world around me and as I have grown older I have learned more and more about this world and how everything is connected. I have learned to understand much better how biodiversity works and how every single insect, bird, flower, etc is important. I am a member of our local wildlife trusts and visit a lot of nature reserves and country parks which are often run by the local county council.

What disturbs me at the moment is the amount of scrub clearing and tree felling. I know that one area was cleared and became a bit of a meadow but then sheep were let in to graze and when they left there were no plants to be seen. Some plants in this spot were attractive to one specific butterfly which no longer visits because it’s food is no longer there.

A few days ago I visited this nature reserve and workmen were there busy clearing scrub and felling trees. It made the reserve more open of course but also more open to the chilly wind which blows across the reserve. The Trust states this on their website;’ The loss of any kind of trees from a nature reserve can cause mixed views, but we are confident that the benefit to core designated waterbirds is significant.’ This particular reserve is known for its birds and waterbirds but there are other species of life there in the undergrowth and trees. When you destroy one habitat to provide for another than the destroyed habitat cannot be replaced elsewhere without difficulty. There are two reserves in this area where the waterbirds are important but we must not forget those other species that rely on what is in the undergrowth to survive. We have lost two many species over the last few years and we don’t want to lose any more.

I’d love to read your response to this blog so please comment.

This was one of many piles of logs and branches

January thoughts

It is frosty, cold and sunny outside so I am staying inside and trying to keep warm. I am lucky that I can do this but there are many who cannot afford to heat their homes. I do feel very tired though and like many others who do a lot of spiritual and healing work, I need a break from this. This year is in numerology terms a 7 year. For me the number 7 has always meant a time to go inside and learn about yourself and who you really are and what you are here on this planet to do.

The year did not start well as I had rather a lot of technology problems but they seem to have been sorted apart from one which is not so important. However although my body resists walking far, my brain is working overtime some days. This means I have been able to do local history research and write it up. I have managed to finish two projects this last couple of weeks and am now waiting for record offices to help me to move on with other projects. I find this kind of work quite fulfilling. It is social history of course, and I can see how little the world has actually changed regarding how people live despite technology and higher wages. There are still many who do not have enough money to live on, just as there were many years ago. We no longer have workhouses though which is a good thing.

There are still wars going on and many dying through this and through other disasters. If our climate is changing as it seems to be then there will be more refugees and more deaths. Are we ready to deal with this or are we going to refuse to help when needed? If parts of the world become inhabitable then people will more elsewhere to somewhere they can live safely and find food. If we don’t think about how we live and change as needed then in a few more decades we may not be here as our world will not provide what we need. What do you think about this?

A new year

Happy New Year to all my readers. It seems a strange start to the year, mild weather and lots of rain. I tend to expect cold and snow in January, but the weather or climate is changing. The bulbs are shooting up and some have buds on them. Last week I was out and saw hazel catkins in bloom. I’m not sure I like how the weather is going. I remember cold winters with lots of snow and children out with sledges. I remember seeing people going to work on skis. I haven’t seen much snow over recent years.

Strike action is in the news at the moment. I remember the winter of discontent or whatever it was called. I also remember having power cuts at scheduled times. Nothing seems to have really changed apart from technology which has caused me quite a few problems recently. I use Windows 7 on my PC and it works perfectly. However I keep getting messages that such and such program will not be updated any more unless I change to Windows 10. To do that I would have to buy a new PC and as mine works well why change it? This happens with other electronic devices so in the end I got a very basic mobile phone instead of a smart phone which suits me fine.

I use an old vacuum cleaner. I bought it a long time ago maybe 25 or so years for £49 and it is still working well so why get a new one? I know friends and relatives who are always getting messages to buy new things even a new car although the current ones work well. Is this a part of the problems of today? Do people always want the most updated version of something? Maybe it is time for people to think about what they need not what they want. Mobile phones contain rare earths in them. They are called rare earths for obvious reasons and currently cannot be recycled.

So a new year, a new way of living maybe and then a new way of being, happy, at peace and in tune with nature.

Questions

We are almost at the end of another year and last night I thought about all the questions I should be asking and maybe you could ask these questions too.

Why are we still building houses on flood plains?

Why are people still paving their driveways and gardens?

Where does the water go then?

Why are we destroying habitats for insects and other wild things?

We have lost something like 68% of our biodiversity, one of the worst countries in the world, why and how have we done this?

Why are councils still allowing the erection of 5G masts in villages and near schools?

I check planning applications for my area. Do you? Do you oppose any if they are not right for your area?

Do you really need the new car, phone, or other gadget?

Do you grow your own vegetables?

I could go on but I think I have said enough. Look at the bigger picture and see how what goes on affects everything around you and others. Happy New Year!

Winter

It really has seemed like winter time this last couple of weeks. I went out with my son on Thursday to a local country park. Both lakes were frozen over, one totally and the other about 3/4s so the poor swans and ducks were stuck to one part of the lake which was not frozen. It was bitterly cold but the sun was shining. I love these kind of days but I do not like the dark mornings and evenings. However the Winter Solstice is almost here.

Once we get to the winter solstice I feel much better. I know the light is returning and it will be lighter in the mornings and evenings. For me it is my new year. But there are many other things to think about. The weather is changing today and going from 1 degree to 11 or more. Climate extremes but why? There are many who say there is no such thing as climate change. There has always been climate change but it seems to have changed for the worse over the last few years. There are things we can do to slow the changes down but no-one seems to want to do anything.

In this country many are struggling to pay bills, to buy food and to stay warm. What sort of country is this? How has it got to this? And what are we going to do about it? I feel lucky that I have enough for me, I am warm, fairly warm at least, and have clothes and food. I am able to help a less well off neighbour and can help in other ways too. But it should not be like this. If we imagine how we want our world to be, how we are all equal and work together in peace and respect, if we can imagine this each day then maybe if enough of us do this, it will actually happen. Be the world you want to be.

Happy holidays to all my readers.

December and more

What a start to this month! I love the crisp, cold and frosty ground with clear blue skies. Maybe the frost will kill off a few nasty bugs that have been going around. I did manage a short walk the other day with my son and it was lovely to just be out and about, something I have not been able to do very much recently because I have had one of those nasty cough type bugs (not the C one though). However our footpaths are not good at the moment and I don’t want to risk falling over and breaking bones so I am staying in apart from going out to fill up the bird feeders.

The bird feeders give me a lot of pleasure. I can focus on them with my camera from my kitchen window and watch the different birds in comfort. Blue tits, sparrows, dunnocks, a robin, coal tits and goldfinches are the main birds who come to feed but I saw a woodpecker the other day. The young squirrel keeps trying to get at the feeders but falls off mainly. Another resident feeds the squirrels.

I am a list maker so each week I make a list of jobs to do, washing, cleaning, baking, working on my web site, writing etc. However I realised one day that I do procrastinate and some jobs just move from one list to the next. But the writing jobs and web site stuff are my own decisions to do. I am retired and I don’t have to write or work on web sites. It is my choice so if I don’t want to do that work one week it doesn’t really matter. But I do like to keep my creative side working, hence writing these blogs.

My virus bug thing has left me quite tired with lots of aches from the coughing. The cold doesn’t help with this and I am wearing so many clothes in an effort to keep warm that I look like a very fat snowman. But I shall enjoy the clear blue sky and the sun shining through my window. After all it is much better than rain! And I have an excuse to rest….

Attitudes and understanding

Today I went to my local shop to collect a few items I needed. I spent some time outside the shop talking to the young woman who sells the Big Issue. There are often some very important articles in it and this week in particular there were some articles which raised a lot of discussion. I have noticed that the regulars know her name and she knows their names too. But as we chatted she told me about one woman who comes past every week, takes a photo of her and tells her she is begging and should get a job. There is obviously a lack of understanding about those who sell the Big Issue. I had hoped that this type of attitude was long gone but it is still here obviously.

I don’t often talk about my early years or being a parent as there were some very painful times. I remember well trying to feed and clothe my very young children after a nasty divorce. Divorce then was difficult. You had to prove or/and have witnesses before any judge considered you could have a divorce. This was over 50 years ago! Times have changed but I remember having a boss who thought I should not be working because of the children.

So I have a great deal of sympathy for those who are struggling to live a decent life and who are short of money and food and clothing. I was always told later during some training as a counsellor that you could only really understand how people feel when you have been in the same position. This is very true and I hope that the woman who keeps being nasty to the young Big Issue seller never finds herself in such a situation.

We think that things have changed over the years and attitudes to others are much better, but that is far from the truth. You only have to read the news to hear about racism, misogyny and ageism to know that things have not changed at all for the better.

Being thankful

The last couple of weeks have been dire and I have been trying to find something to be thankful for. I am rarely ill with the ‘bugs’ that go around so I was absolutely shocked when I got one of these nasty ones. I have always looked after my immune system so it seemed even more shocking. I cannot remember ever being this ill in all my life.

What kept me going was the birds using my feeders. I managed to get outside every couple of days to fill the feeders and I can see them through my kitchen window. And then when the sun appeared . rather infrequently though, that also helped. I am now much better but not yet 100%. But I am still here so I am thankful for that. My son did the shopping and got me out a couple of times in the fresh air for which I am also thankful.

I am now in the third week and am much more able to do things so I have spent some time working on new items for my web site. (cerianwen.co.uk) as some of the pages were well out of date. I started with my family history page and have been working more on this. Some of the stories in my family history are quite sad but when I look at how many people are living now and how they lived then, there does not seem to be a lot of difference in the help given to those less fortunate. I am thankful for what I have and thankful that I have enough to have a reasonable life. I am not rich but I do have enough to pay my bills, eat and have clothes. There are many less fortunate and I would like to be in a position to help where I can.

I am looking forward to being able to get out more soon and enjoy the countryside again.

A chaotic world

All around are the signs of chaos. I am really shocked at what is going on around us. What happened to common sense and reasoned thought? You can’t just flip from one thing to another without hurting someone or something. There are so many important things going on in our world that need to be dealt with sooner rather than later or there will be no later. Yet people dance around each other thinking things are funny when so many people are suffering not just here in my country but elsewhere in the world. All life is suffering, trees, birds, insects etc are all in decline.

We have had extreme heat over the summer, now torrential rain has arrived. There are so many signs that our climate is changing yet nothing is happening to help us to find solutions. In fact, those in power are making things worse by allowing new coal mines, new oil and gas offshore drilling and fracking. When are people going to realise that we have to change the way we live, the way we build our homes and the way we travel, grow food etc. If we carry on as we are doing then in a few decades time we will all be gone.

I used to believe that spirit would not allow our world to disintegrate but I find it hard to believe that now. It comes back to hope. We have to have hope or we have nothing. I’m sure I wrote this last week but things have got much worse since then. Is what is happening a sign that all we know will disappear and a new world miraculously emerge? If so how do we help that new world to emerge? I remember writing that we could imagine a better world and keep that image foremost but I am beginning to feel that we need to do more. But what? Do you have any answers or suggestion?

Coping with difficult times

Many of us are going through difficult times and also times which may get even more difficult. My difficult time is really about my mobility and my physical health but this also applies to many others as well. As many of my readers know I am now 81 and have mobility problems which vary from day to day. After doing very little during the hot weather I decided that I needed to walk more either using my elbow crutch or using my walker/rollator. I made a decision to walk every day even if only half a mile. The first few days were fine but then I chose a different route which went up a hill. Where I live, if you go off the main road you go uphill. This uphill was hard and I was out of puff when I go to the top but I found a different way back down. However the feeling of space at the top made up for the hard work getting there. The following day I went the other way and came down the steep hill. That was the straw that broke the camels back and my knees and ankles did not like this at all. So a decision is made now that I do not go up or down the steep hill but go the other way which is less steep. You could call this adjusting or adapting what I do.

I feel that adapting different ways of doing things or making little adjustments to how you do things can make a lot of difference. You can apply this to many other things, shopping, cooking and other what you could call household tasks. I look out for offers when shopping and have found that I can still buy good food but save money with offers.

There are other things that can prove difficult for many. Those on waiting lists to see consultants or have operations or treatment. This can mean a difference between life and death in some cases and some with savings are using those to get treatment. In the UK this should not have to be the way but lack of proper funding for our NHS has brought us to this position. How do you cope with the waiting? Some look for alternative treatment and this can work well for some illnesses, others sink into depression which only makes things worse. I really understand that staying hopeful is hard, very hard, and when I look at the state of the world I often feel that there is no hope for change but we have to have hope and we have to imagine our world as a better place however hard our lives are currently. Without hope there is nothing.

As a Reiki practitioner I know that working together is better than working singly. Thoughts are energy and if we all send out love to every person in the world at the same time on the same day I am sure things will change. If you believe in this then join me at 9pm UK time on Wednesday evenings when together with others we send out healing and positive energy to our world.