Opening my eyes in today’s world can have the feel of my heart breaking open upon itself. The temptation to close off the self to
perceiving the magnitude of ‘what is’… can be great. Is great. The Deepwater Horizon oil spill is only the obvious tip of a global phenomenon, as tragic as it will prove to be.
Even Haiti’s earthquake is a reminder that human system resilience is dependent upon the vibrant health of the natural world. Yet…
Witness this, from BBC:
The Earth’s ongoing nature losses may soon begin to hit national economies, a major UN report has warned.
The third Global Biodiversity Outlook (GBO-3) says that some ecosystems may soon reach “tipping points” where they rapidly become less useful to humanity….
Or this new book from Bill McKibben, Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet, and reviewed here at salon.com
“Eaarth”: Earth is over
A climate pioneer declares the planet — with its rising humidity and hot oceans — dead
Yes, this rewilding of the self requires the unflinching courage to open our eyes and hearts to what is. This is the time we live in. And it is the time of our awakening; the time for offering our gifts to the world, our gratitude for the life force that moves us, and for opening also to the beauty all around us, that we are embedded within. Without this reciprocal opening into beauty and possibility we shall never discover the courage to fully perceive the dire straights we are in, nor the inspiration and vision and wild wisdom for the creation and birthing of a new world, a new rewilded self.
Wendell Berry is one of my inspirations here, beautifully pointing the way.
THE PEACE OF WILD THINGS
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives my be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
from The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry, and currently out of print
Taking action is not only vital for the planet, for your neighborhood, but for your health too! Check out: 350.org
Gratefulness.org: Our international nonprofit organization provides resources for living in the gentle power of gratefulness, which restores courage, reconciles relationships, and heals our Earth.
Poetry Foundation where you can find more of Wendell Berry’s poems, and more.