The mole is one of the few mammals who decided to move almost entirely into the earth. Highly appropriate that it came to me in a journey last night as we are working with the element of Earth at this time of winter.
What was really apparent to me in the journey was the number of earthworms wriggling around in moles path as he burrowed his way through the soil. When we enter the darkness, and push our way through dense matter trying to find our way, it’s a lovely reminder that there is nourishment for us as we go. When mole looks back at his work, he has created a network of pathways to sustain himself. Pushing through matter to make a path which brings him life long benefit. So on his merry way he will push what he no longer needs up into the light.
In our work with The Way of the Buzzard there is a common theme which is coming up, which is peoples despair with all the horror in the world. It can bring us immense grief, as we hold both the grief in our own lives, and the grief of humanity as it struggles to find a way to exist in harmony with each other, all of life on Earth, and the Earth herself.
For me, the shamanic path has been my way of learning to live with this grief, to find nourishment in my life and a real sense of joy and gratitude for being alive during these extraordinary times. I have not always felt this way. Working in corporate sustainability for fifteen years I often felt I was on the front line, watching the actions of these big organisations take from the Earth that I loved so much, and seeing how little many people cared in the process. Not all people mind, but many, as of course the most important thing for corporations is to make as much money as possible and maintain business as usual, whatever the cost.
A little piece of me would die inside with every conversation where I had to talk about the business case for sustainability, and show empathy and understanding with tactful questioning when boardroom directors just wanted to talk about the carrier bag tax and double sided printing. Or when I had to take a deep breath and answer the repeated question ‘but climate change isn’t really happening is it’. It brought me to the edge of a breakdown as I felt it was my own personal mission to change the unchangeable, but through that crisis a great change came about in my life.
It took several years, but when I look back I am grateful for that crisis, and for the life that I have lived as I have deepened into my Earth based spiritual path. If the crisis hadn’t been there, I wouldn’t be the person I am now, and I wouldn’t be doing what I do now, that I am certain of. Of course, when in the depths of the transitional process from releasing myself from the old structures and moving into co-creating something new, I was not in a good place. It’s very easy to say these things now with hindsight, but when I was in the depths of my despair just getting to the end of the day felt like a personal triumph.
But who said that our lives were going to be plain sailing all the way through from the day we were born to the day we die? Our challenge is to find a way of living with our own grief, and the grief of the world, where we wake up each day feeling good about life. This isn’t about hiding from the sadness of the world. This is about stepping forward and finding our place in creating something far more beautiful, and it starts from within. To be brave enough to look within, for me, I needed to be surrounded by supportive people who were also exploring what it means to be human again, and whom I could reach out to whenever I needed to.
Einsten said ‘look deep into nature and then you will understand everything better’. This is the key to finding our way whilst burrowing through the darkness. Nature is our healer, and through our work with The Way of the Buzzard, we hope to help others find the healing that both Jason and I have found over the years.
If any of this resonates with you, then do take a look at what we have planned this Spring, working with the transformational energies of nature. We have day long sabbat celebrations starting at Imbolc, weekend retreats up in the beautiful Roeburndale Valley in the Forest of Bowland, as well as an evening class introducing some fundamentals of shamanism, full moon trance drumming evenings, and drum birthing days. We also have our regular shamanic drumming circles in Stockport, Preston and Wilmslow, as well as two new ones starting in Chorley and Lancaster. Not forgetting our 121 healing sessions from our home near Chorley, and of course our jewel, the Space to Emerge festival in the Lake District this coming May.
A sketch of my Mole journey yesterday evening (don’t laugh! well you can if you like!)