This week I feel I have seen a some little shifts in consciousness around me and within me. Shifts in consciousness involve opening up to aspects of our being that we have hidden away. I suspect that really I have just got back to where I was earlier in my life but have deepened what I already know and do.
I have had a busy week meeting friends for the first time in over a year. I have had discussions about healing energies, past lives and other similar themes. I have been out in nature as well and have noticed more of the tiny insects that are out there. I have been chanting in the mornings, something I have not done for a long time. I feel more at peace and even more at one with the natural world than I have before. So is this a shift in consciousness?
I think it is although I am not really seeing things in a different way but in a more deeper way. I have loved to see the different kinds of insects in their environments and learn what they eat and how they live. I feel all of this is important as we learn about the connection between everything that lives including plants and the land itself. Without understanding this connection we cannot change anything and change is important as long as it is the right change.
On another level but still connected I decided to spend a lot of money on good shoes. My feet are deformed and walking is painful but I know of a shoe company that produces the most comfortable shoes I have ever worn. If I want to do a lot of walking in woods and around lakes then I need comfortable shoes. I have already noticed the difference. As I walk better and without pain I am able to notice more of what is going on around me. And that is all good.
What a beautiful morning it is. The sun is shining, the blue sky is dotted with small white clouds, the dew is sparkling on the grass and the plumage of the starling is stunning. I stood for some time by my open window breathing in the fresh air and letting the new day soothe me. I noticed a red kite high in the sky soaring then swooping to catch its prey. What a wonderful world it is!
What more could I want or need I thought. But there is much I would like to see in our world. I want to see people going out and about enjoying the natural world around them. I want them to talk to each other, to hug and embrace and to share both good and bad. I want to see an end to war but we don’t seem to learn from the past as war follows war and then another war somewhere else. I want to see an end to the hatred, the racism, the feeling that we are better than others.
It doesn’t matter where we come from, who we are and how much money we have, we all came from the same source and we must learn to honour each other. We need to show our children the right way to live. Some years ago now I read a book by Kent Nerburn ‘The wolf at Twilight – An Indian Elders Journey through a land of ghosts and shadows.’ In this book the elder named Dan talks about teaching our children by giving them a vision of what is right and wrong, and teaching them to help the weak and that giving things away brings wealth. He also states that we need to let them know that they are an important part of the circle of life and if they do not play their part then no-one else can. We are all part of the circle of life and we are all connected in this circle. We need to remember this connection as we go through our daily lives.
There are times over the last 18 months when I have felt moments of despair as I noticed what was going on in the world around me. I wrote a few weeks ago about our world with a lot of questions. The events of the week, both personal and global led me to write a poem with more questions. Here it is.
Hope and Despair
I look around the world and sigh. What is the matter with humankind? Why is there war and desecration? Why do people see themselves As better that anyone else?
It comes down to greed for more land and more money, No thoughts of anyone else. How can we change the way people think So they will change their ways?
I have no answers but do have hope Although I sometimes despair. There must be a greater plan around If we are to make our world fair.
Are we still getting rid of the old to make way for the new? It doesn’t really seem that way But I’ll hang on to hope as long as I can And help others to feel the right way.
This week I have been feeling rather sad after the events of the last few days so I decided to write about a special tree I know but this is quite sad too in some ways. For many years I have visited ancient trees, three of them in an ancient forest in Northamptonshire. I knew about three trees there and visited one of them many times so sit with it and on it and enjoy its peace and wonder at how it had grown. It was an ancient beech. Later I found it had been cut down and only a stump remains. It was quite close to the road so I suspect it had become unsafe. The other two trees are in a different part of the forest and a small distance apart. One is an ash tree and the other a beech tree.
The first time I visited the ash tree was around 15 years ago or more. It was awesome. I stood under its canopy and felt like a midget standing there. The tree was so powerful I could hardly believe it but I felt its energy strongly. Some years later on another visit I was dismayed to find it had been almost cut in half. and looked bare and desolate. Last week I persuaded my son to take me out there. I felt an urge to see this ancient ash and find out if it was still alive. It was alive. It was hollow but had branches coming out from it and there were signs of new growth. I felt relieved but sad too.
We did not have time to visit the third tree so I hope it is still growing strongly and giving pleasure to many. I have also visited many other ancient trees in various places, one in a farmyard! I often wonder what stories they could tell us about the life of people during the ife of the tree. 300 years is a long time and much has changed over this period of time.
Here are 3 photos of the ash tree, one in full bloom, one after its cutting and the final one from this week.
As current restrictions start to lift, it is time to move forward towards a new way of living. There are many who are frightened of being able to go out, to shop, to walk, to dine out or go to the gym. They have spent a year or more cocooned in their homes, often without any face-to-face contact with others.
Although Zoom, video calls and similar stuff are available to some, they are not available to all, and they are not the same as seeing someone in person. But for many others such things have given them a chance to talk to others and see them from a distance. But the main thing for many is that they have been given a chance to reflect on their lives and the way they live them. Many have decided to live in different ways, to be more careful about what they buy and have also decided that what they want and what they need are two different things. If we only bought what we needed then there would be less waste and landfill. There are many arguments about buying organic clothing or clothing made from recycled fibres as they tend to cost more but they generally last much longer. Buying organic food is also good but again generally costs more. But what is your health worth to you?
So now here we are, emerging from this long period of restrictions on our lives. I know that my life has changed very little although I am much more appreciative about being able to get outdoors with my son as I can’t go with friends yet. I do not drive which does not help so I can also feel for those in similar positions. However I have managed to get out to local areas of nature reserves and country parks and have walked (with my crutch) and sat and enjoyed the peace of the water and the joy of the birdsong and watched the seasons change. Everywhere is now much greener than it was a few weeks ago. To be outside in the open air is so beneficial and to hug a tree is also a most wonderful thing to do.
So as we emerge from this period of dark, let us stride forward, stretch our legs and minds and breathe deeply of the air around us and work towards a better way of life for us all.