Rivers flow, winds blow, and mountains of sand move. Water banks shift, beaches shrink – the Earth has her own groove. But here we are with retaining walls, homes of stone and streets paved in concrete. Man-made canals and walls to damn because we think it’s our own land. With great convictions we invent restrictions to imprison her bountiful bodies. We happily wave her old currents goodbye as we create her new ebbs and tides, ones that used to flourish now only malnourish and we wonder why. Committed and convicted are her handlers who defeat all her damsel-like defenses. With dozers and dynamite they do their will under a falsified right; tearing, blasting, deconstructing and dividing with fences… his, hers, yours, and mine… taking, giving, raping, and selling – prostituting and looting her most valuable pieces. Like plaster on walls, we silence her pulsing beats with our seemingly prosperous feats.
Rise before the sun shines, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. Brew the perfect cup of coffee and enjoy sipping it while birds sing their songs welcoming morning. The sky is blue decorated with white, fluffy clouds hanging daintily from its ceiling like ornaments. Outside the earth accepts the sun’s rays and happily molds the golden light into shiny, shimmers of hope for all the world’s inhabitants. We pause for a brief moment to stand by the open window and inhale the day’s promise deep into our lungs, an attempt to fill our presence with enough of this virtuous essence to last until tomorrow. Man’s clock doesn’t stop however. We are programmed to step in time with it. Only minutes left before we must begin another man-made day made just like yesterday. Turn on the tube for the most recent news; teen robbers, domestic shootings, kidnapping of family members, flooded communities, casualties of war, nuclear contamination, and White House stale-mate stories quickly crowd our hope-filled souls. Silently and without awareness of it, the weight of man’s decisions are upon us. These burdens covertly settle inside our thoughts like a talcum powder atop a fleeting memory. Unknowingly we traverse through our universe appalled by what we continue to witness feeling helpless to make a difference. We bury our guilt and customarily put on our best happy face before we head out. And so it goes.
We are running late. Driving to point B with a blinding focus that dangerously hinders our mindfulness, we rush into work questioning to ourselves, “Was that light green or red?” and “How did I get here?” 4,380 days have gone by rushing into this place and you think they would remember the first day you stepped foot into their building. The sacrifices you have made; lost time with your family, missed reunions, passed up vacations, and most importantly – your willingness to continue choosing them over you. Today you arrive to find it the same as yesterday; nothing has changed. Well, except the people maybe, but the positions, the titles, the cubicles, the offices, and the duties remain the same. Your anniversary feels more like a sentence without a chance of parole, but you press forward refraining from pondering your childhood dreams – afraid to take inventory because you fear discovering yourself empty and hollow – devoid of any unique aspirations belonging solely to yourself. Childhood dreams and goals are long gone and mostly forgotten. You regularly rise and partake in man’s reality, which is not reality at all but merely a projection of what many think it should be. You are unsatisfied and unhappy but you cannot be true to yourself, for to do so would mean disappointing so many others; like your Boss, Co-Workers, Partner, Parents, and Children. They count on your bi-weekly monetary contribution to have and live the way they feel they must. In order to be successful in their eyes, you proceed to live a dead life while the lively one you possess inside slowly dies. And so it goes.
The pink slip you receive is detrimental to your family’s financial livelihood. Without your income your worth lessens. No longer considered an asset to those around you, your value is reduced to a burden. Your spouse alone cannot support the lifestyle the family has become accustom to. Unable to remove society’s veil he is wired to keep his possessions by whatever means possible and at whatever cost. His foundation for life is fragile for it was built with man-made materials and not earthly values. Lacking the strength to uphold moral codes the mortar crumbles. He sweeps up crumbs of the concrete casa and seeks refuge in another’s seemingly safe haven. In time your children want the material things that only he can provide. Lost are your chances to instill in them humanly attributes that will build them up enough to withstand our man-made society full of arbitrary goals and unnecessary pressures. What will they do when it collapses as it did around you? Without a strong sense of what is most important they will continue to thirst and chase the mirage. And so it goes.
Material possessions and rose-colored glasses removed you are blessed with the sight of youth, seeing the same old things with rejuvenated eyes. No longer blinded by superficial gains but driven by spiritual needs. Life slows down giving you more time to discover your higher self. Lost spirits looking for man-made constructs continue to pass you up; another blessing. Time is now your friend. Life is quaint as you listen to the birds outside your window. You are no longer devastated by the loss of what so many feel is necessary because you have found what many may never find, sight into a world of hope, innocence, and promise that goes beyond a day; beyond false perspectives of success. Today’s gift is the present. The feeling of love for yourself, the world, and all its inhabitants is so grand that as your heart expands to envelop all that it is, your eyes weep with the love that overflows. Your wish is to embrace each soul on earth and lift the veil for each and every one. But this newfound awareness cannot be conveyed by words alone. It must be discovered by the individual himself by the choices that are made, which places them in the self-created predicaments we find ourselves in. One man-made day will render us with no other alternative but to see the truth in the world as it really is and as it should be. And so it goes.
To gaze naively at your surroundings is like looking one again, through the eyes of a young child. A child, prior to the embedding of a particular culture consisting of social customs and taboos, is a soul in its present state with a perspective clear of civilized theories. Ideals that assume “… only humans have intelligent souls, and that the other animals, to say nothing of the trees and rivers, were created for no other reason than to serve mankind” (The Ecology of Magic by D. Abram); a view empty of such impressions allows the beholder to experience the natural phenomena, Animism.
Animism is the belief that natural objects, and the universe itself have souls and that the soul is the principle of life and health. Take time to smell the roses is more than a simple cliché; it is a ritual that should be practiced each and every day.
When we pause and allow ourselves time to bask in Mother Earth’s maternal embrace, we experience the gift of youthful sight. It is then, during those precious moments, that we remember how necessary our relation with nature truly is.