Monday, October 1, 2012

Deeply Listening to Nature

For this iSite, I was to work on improving my listening ability - but not in listening to other humans (though that could always use some work).  I was to listen to the creatures around me on a particular place in time, defer judgement, set aside distractions, and be present.  In this instance, in the woods while camping in British Columbia.
Wildlife Tree
I started out thinking about my stomach moving and the scratch of my pen as I wrote in my journal.  I heard waves crashing at an adjacent shore and birds honking and tweeting all around me.  I began to stare at a "wildlife spire," otherwise known as the stump of a 4' diameter Douglas Fir which had become a colony of life for moss, lichen, insects, micorbes, etc.  I thought about how the destruction of one life led to life for countless others smaller than the original.  I thought of Shiva, the Hindu God of destruction that is also the bringer of life and saw the beauty in its decay.  Life is opportunistic.  It grabs resources when it can.  And Life finds a way.

I thought about what I could learn from this tree.  From the most obvious - I need to get outside more and take my family with me!  To the metaphorical - perhaps something needs to break or die away in my life in order for renewal to begin.  Considering I've just broken away from my original career path in architecture to one that is completely unknown, I'd say I'm well on my way to walking this path!

I thought about the core of the tree, exposed for all to see.  What is the core of the work I'm trying to do?  How can I help people see that Life on this earth is important?  Sacred?  Something to be revered above all else?  I thought about biomimicry as a tool to help people understand that we are all in this together.  "We are one."  This is a fundamental spiritual change in our collective psyche.  We need to change hearts, not just minds. Talk to their heads, but show their hearts.  This is the core of the work I am pursuing.

I thought to myself as I listened to Grandmother Stump, "your life is beautiful, even in your death because of the life you feed and the structure and protection you provide."  This is a spiritual as well as a professional journey for me and I welcome anyone who wants to join me.


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