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Being

Photo: Ken Golding

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This page will showcase selected ways in which people and communities are rebuilding their connection to Earth. If you are involved in or know about such projects please use this form to share the details.   Remember to provide links and/or contacts.

Joanna Macy : Inventing the Future

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Being

As we ponder how to deal with the existential crises we have brought upon ourselves, a radical shift in our collective ways of being may be our best and last chance. Radical, that is, in the literal sense: a return to our roots in Earth's matrix of life — a reframing of our culture around the participatory values of eco-mutuality.

 

A renewed awareness of the Earth

 

Creative expressions of Earth awareness are limitless, as can be seen in a great diversity of settings around the world involving the full spectrum of artistic forms — music, performance, dance, visual arts, ritual. 

 

There are many ways in which communities come together to explore and celebrate their relationship with the Earth in all its modes of being. In some places seasonal festivals and ceremonies have continued down the ages, though sometimes faded to mere echoes of their original inspiration. Even so, they retain the seed of something ancient and valuable and may be capable of reinterpretation in a contemporary context.

 

In some communities more overtly spiritual manifestations may emerge. For others the emphasis remains on artistic expression and celebration.

 

Sharing experiences of connection to the Earth in places of ecological and cultural significance can deepen our sense of belonging to a larger community of life. All have a part to play in weaving the fabric of a cultural renaissance.

 

Earth Dialogues

 

The convening of Earth Dialogues are one way of deepening Earth consciousness. These can take the form of gatherings at places of cultural and ecological significance designed to encourage the sharing of different ways of knowing and being present to the Earth.

 

Participants might include indigenous elders, land stewards working to protect or restore farmlands and

Psyche:

Being present

to the Earth

The domain of Earth awareness, deep remembering, and heart connection

habitats, holistic scientists, environmental educators, green entrepreneurs, and artists from diverse modalities.

 

Earth Dialogues can open a space for creative expression and performance and can incorporate both newly devised and more traditional forms of ceremony that bring in the voices of indigenous elders, our non-human neighbours and of future generations. By encouraging a plurality of expression and inquiry, Earth Dialogues foster our identification as part of a rich and diverse community of place.

 

Deep remembering and heartfelt connection

 

We have reached the point where the survival of our species requires that we abandon the underpinning conceit of industrial growth societies — that humans stand outside of nature with first claim on environmental resource. We need to discover, or rediscover, more intimate and empathetic ways of being with the Earth.

 

Surviving indigenous cultures have much to teach us about the interdependence of all life, and about respect and responsibility for our relationship with the Earth.

 

This transformation of our core cultural values will require deep remembering, and many diverse opportunities to share, reflect on, and creatively reinterpret experiences of heartfelt connection with the natural world and its precious gifts of life.


"If we allow a sense of presence to steal up the bones and swirl through the rooms of a many-chambered heart the planet becomes far too enchanting to ignore ... and the imaginary line between us and the rest of nature simply dissolves.”     

Diane Ackerman, North American nature poet

 

“If we approach nature … without an openness to awe … our attitude will be that of masters, consumers, exploiters…By contrast, if we feel intimately united with all that exists, then … care will well-up spontaneously.”

 

Pope Francis, “Laudato Si, On Care of Our Common Home”, May 24, 2015

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