“I walk the earth with my feet deeply rooted in the soil. My heart beats in unison with the clouds, the thunder and the rain. As I give myself to the moment I become the tide that ebbs and flows, I am the sun that rises and the moon that dances with the stars. I am the pain and suffering of our planet, choking on the poisons in the soil and sick from the polluted waters. I am the wind in the trees and my consciousness is embedded in the eternal rocks. Yet I am still me. This morning whispered to me and my soul answered the calling by being present. When I am still and listen to the whispers of the inner worlds, the language can be heard, seen and tasted in every moment. An ancient language, like the voice of angels. No separation exists. Everything is holy, everything is One.” Journal excerpt, 2013.
In each of us there is a nature soul, a forgotten aspect of us that remains hidden behind the materialistic veil of today’s world. The nature soul is at one with the Earth and rooted within the fabric of Her body. It is a witness to the Earth’s daily magic and it is a living remembrance of being born from Her ancient womb. Our nature soul is that part of us that is a living connection to the soul of the Earth, it’s a spark within Her soul and an inseparable part of Her being. By restoring our remembrance of the nature soul we can invoke a forgotten Earth magic that is something mysterious and wildly feminine, a hidden hint, a powerful new archetype that promises new life. This act of remembrance is the magical potion that can dissolve the dark spell that has insidiously infiltrated the consciousness of humanity.
The Dark Spell
Our global culture is in the throes of a deep mental illness imaged as a spell on our collective memory. This spell is insidious and all-pervasive and has infiltrated nearly all aspects of our lives and our collective experiences of life. There are few places in the human spectrum of consciousness that are not somehow blinded by this strange dark magic, trapped in this spell that makes us believe that matter is separate from spirit. This spell is like an underlying fracture in the modern human collective consciousness and it is the thing that has separated us from remembering that the Earth is an embodied face of God, prevents us from knowing the divinity in matter. Not only has this strange dark magic desecrated our planet and the collective human consciousness but it has also desecrated our collective soul and in turn the soul of our beloved Mother, the Earth.
And now at this time when we collectively hoped for a shift in consciousness towards a better world there seems to be a new energy in this spell, as though it has become an autonomous entity that is thriving and growing, not dissipating at all. The signs that this magic has reached its crescendo are showing in prophesy and being witnessed in ecological devastation of a scale that we are now calling “irreversible”.
But the majority of humanity is still not taking any notice.
It seems that as the spell has grown in power it has become more sophisticated and eloquent, allowing it to find spaces in our psyche that could never be pierced before. The spell continues to desecrate the bonds of love that are woven between humanity and the Earth as it looks for a place in the subtle realms where it it can become a permanent veil that will shadow the light that flows between God and humanity. In this fatal game of smoke and mirrors the dark magic seems to be finding its death grip. It has almost permanently stamped its power upon the psyche of humanity, capturing our light so that it can grow stronger.
The dark spell has drowned out the song of the Earth with its own dark lullaby and has lulled humanity into a state of hypnotic sleep. Our attention has been so utterly taken by the nightmare of consumerism that we have forgotten the old instinctual song lines that we once used to dance life into existence. Like a hungry ghost, this magic that is embodied in the patterns of materialistic-consumerist society has devoured the light of the world soul and left us collectively stupefied, hypnotized and numb to the subtle undercurrents of real life.
It’s a tragic state because it has meant that there have been too few people present to act as conscious guardians of the light of humanity and the Earth.
A Frail Thread
Our survival as a species hangs on a very frail thread. This thread is nurtured by our remembrance of the sacred nature of life, the remembrance that we are on this planet to serve and surrender to God. If this sacred thread of remembrance is not honored in humanity then we will have to face the consequences of a mass cultural genocide. The sacred threads of consciousness and wisdom have been nurtured by the saints, mystics and shamans and devotees of this world since the beginning of time. They form a golden thread across space and time that hold the sacred balance of life intact. If this thread is not nurtured then we must accept a future in which our global culture collapses. No technological panacea will ever bring us back form a cultural collapse, because only the shamans and mystics know how to pray and dance the world back to life. If we continue to berate the spiritual caretakers of this world, continue to build a global culture that desecrates sacred spaces and leaves no room for spiritual life, then what hope is there? If humanity continues to ignore the fact that the Earth is sacred, that we are guardians of nature and that our purpose as humanity is to surrender to the will of God, then our time here will simply end. In the scenario where humanity dies, our beloved Mother Earth will turn into the dark goddess Kali, violently aborting us from her holarchy.
Only the mystic and shaman truly understand what the possibilities of our future are. They alone hold the answers to helping the rest of humanity to avoid a deeper catastrophe.
These times remind me of a prophecy I heard when meeting with the great African shaman, Credo Mutwa. We were speaking about the world and it’s uncertain future and he told me that he saw the African tribes leaving this Earth to continue their evolution on another planet. He went on to explain that this world had become too desecrated for the African tribes to complete their soul work here in peace. Their way of life was not respected, the simple fact that everyone was being forced to become a tax-paying consumer tore apart the very threads of community life. The AIDS pandemic in Africa was well underway by then and I wondered whether this was a sign of the end of days for a nation. An entire racial group leaving the earth to perform its soul work elsewhere? Did this mean that an entire culture would die? In the late 1990’s this seemed difficult to comprehend, but in these days of global ecocide I wonder whether he had actually prophesied the future quite clearly.
We live in a dream. This dream has become a nightmare. There are parts of the earth where we can still live in isolation and enjoy the gifts of this paradise, but nowhere is protected from the effects of our global civilization and its illness of materialism. Life will continue, but will humanity?
The Sleeping Sickness
We are all half asleep, living a consumerist dream that will never be fulfilled. We are ‘hungry ghosts’ living with a sickness where we constantly want things to fill our emptiness. None of us are exempt from this constant desire for things. We all need to face this desire for more stuff and find the inner discipline to be frugal, to be austere in the face of a collective addiction to material things.
In this half sleep which I myself have been lost in, there is this “I” that has woken up and seen the desecration of the world. This other self has looked into the eyes of the great Mother and felt the cry of deep pain in Her heart. As an environmentalist I have witnessed the outer destruction of ecosystems but as a child of the Earth I have felt the inner desecration of Her being. It is a deep and terrible pain that tears me apart. But this pain also awakens something. It awakens a warrior in me who simply cannot watch passively as our Mother is destroyed. Some voice inside me, some hidden memory, begs to be awakened from this horrible nightmare and to help Her heal from this woundedness.
This remembrance has pointed my inner compass to a distant memory where the Earth was a sacred Goddess and humanity were devotees, implicitly conscious of our sacred role. How do we collectively remember that we are fragments of her great consciousness? How do we realize that we are Her, that our very consciousness is Her reflecting upon Herself?
Our ancestors knew. Their sacred ceremonies remembered. They taught each generation to relate to the Earth in an act of love, body supine and head bowed in humility, honor and the deepest respect for that which is truly sacred. We all originate from this sacred tribe, we all know in our hearts that life is a divine consciousness unfolding and reflecting upon itself, a consciousness that can only be called a supreme state of primordial love.
It is when we acknowledge this again that we are confronted by the terrible damage we have done. This realization can drive us deeper into our psyches than we ever wanted to go. It is easier on our feelings to go back to sleep, to ignore the pain, to brush this inconvenient realization under the carpet and cover it up.
We are Earthlings
Our role is to acknowledge that we are earthlings, the children of Earth. Our life is given to us by our Mother. How do we show our love and respect to her? As children of the Earth we are caretakers of this planet, guardians of the Garden of Eden. It is a fundamental duty of humanity to take care of the Earth, to be guardians of all creatures that are smaller than we are, weaker than us, who need our protection. It is our duty to be guardians of the earth because we are the most developed species on this planet. Humans hold the potential to completely destroy life on this planet or create a harmonious relationship within all the living systems.
It is a fundamental duty of the soul, well remembered by the shamans, that we must be guardians of this world.
This remembrance of a primal duty of the soul has lit a flame in my heart that I recognize from some other time or place, past or future. It is an essential part of being human, an intrinsic aspect of who we fundamentally are, so it when we remember this it adds a flame to the burning light present in our hearts. This flame that has the potential to light fires in the hearts of others too, fires that will help bring balance back to the Earth and prepare the soil for a new world that is waiting to be born.
But this remembrance is not all love and light. It has a razor sharp edge.
Whilst this awakening of the nature soul and this remembrance of the green warrior self has given me deep optimism and hope for the future I have also felt moments of utter despair and hopelessness, anger and fury. For in awakening to the memory of this new light within me there is also this radically clear and painfully sharp awareness of how severely our beloved Mother has been desecrated. In these moments when I feel helpless and angry I am faced with the Janus face of this warrior who seeks total annihilation and renewal, at any cost. This fine line is a space I must tread lightly, dance rather than think, a place where I need to surrender again and again with my awareness resting in the heart. So I walk this fine line which I imagine is like a pathway that has led to the very heart of our Mother and in a state of surrender and emptiness I have dropped to my knees and asked for Her grace. For what else is there for one to do than to ask for forgiveness and grace and to offer ones life in service to the One that is present in nature.
A New Earth Medicine
I believe that when we remember the spirit of the Earth we are each given a gift that is a special secret held in Her heart. For me it was the memory that each of us stretches back in time to a community of indigenous people who first received the wisdom of God. It is a memory that we are both mystic and shaman, both of this world and the transcendent spiritual realm which is timeless. This secret has unfolded a new fusion inside of me that feels like a marriage between my “earth self” and my “spiritual self” and I have named it my “nature soul”. It is somehow not the old soul I knew but something else now, something with roots that grow back to the first moment of creation where our Mother was a spark that emerged into the nothingness before time.
This fusion of earth magic and transcendent spirituality is the gift that we all need to receive and nurture into existence in this time of need. By acknowledging the existence of our nature soul and remembering that our soul is both Her soul and ours, it awakens a strange kind of magic. Through the remembrance of Her we are given the opportunity to receive this gift and I believe this is the subtle magic that can ultimately dismantle and dissolve the dark spell.
This subtle gift is a new Earth medicine that can collectively awaken the dreamers from the nightmare of materialism. The remembrance of the nature soul is about reclaiming our memory of the Earth, of weaving back the sacred threads of love into the soil and into life all around us. In remembering there is awakening and in awakening there is a fertilization of the vision that was prophesied by ancient women, many moons ago, that a new “Unknown She” would rise up and return to walk and dance Love back into the Earth. It speaks to us as a motion in the fabric of the Earth’s psyche, a murmuring that the shamans interpret in the winds and unravel in their songs. It contains that same primordial spark of the first dance of existence. It is something so profoundly mysterious but utterly simple and unseen to those whose gaze is fixated on the material world.
And in this deeply significant time of transition, this time of immense ecological crisis, there is a brief moment of possibility for us to receive this gift, to learn to sing to our Earth again. For to know this secret is to understand life’s potential for infinite renewal. It is the secret lore that our ancient ancestors held in their hearts. It reminds us that the life force of our Mother, the energy that pulses throughout her body and into life, enters the world through the attention that we give to life which is held in our hearts. It reminds us that the present moment is a dynamic center within the universe, a moment of potential, a small portal through which a new light can enter the world and illuminate the God-given possibilities of this time.
This moment speaks to the very essence of our nature soul, offers us a shamanic practice for bringing the light into the Earth. I see it imaged like a tree that imbibes the light of the sun and draws this light deep into the core of its roots where it can be realized in the dark depths of creation. Our nature soul is this aspect of Her body.