Thursday, January 8, 2009

Creating Community

I sat in front of my computer in the early morning darkness. I wanted to write, or at least start this piece, before I was influenced by the morning news.

Twenty years ago when I started reading Mary Summer Rain’s books I felt all alone. She, with Ruth Montgomery, Euell Gibbons and Lynn Andrews were introducing me to a wide open spiritual path but I had no one to share it with. I remember two distinct thoughts from those early years. I remember Mary Summer Rain stating in one of her books that extreme high winds would be the precursor of the earth changes to come. Alone, I was afraid. And secondly, I remember praying to meet and be with others who thought more like me.

Early yesterday afternoon two wild fires scorched hundreds of acres in Boulder County, Colorado. I happened to turn on my TV yesterday afternoon which is bizarre because I so very rarely have it on that time of day, but I was too tired to be a real estate appraiser and I had decided to take down my Christmas decorations. And there it was … live coverage of the fire in progress. It was burning on both sides of Highway 36 which runs north/south from the city of Boulder to the small community of Lyons. I personally know dozens of people who live in this area and there are several large horse facilities as well. As the evening wore on, I stepped outside my front porch and looked west. At first I could see only smoke and then, when I first saw the orange line of fire, I was appalled. I live 30 miles northeast of Boulder, but as the fire traversed the mountain foothills, I could watch its progress.

Yesterday, my fellow Americans in the northwest were digging six feet of snow off of school rooftops to prevent them from collapsing; there were folks in the mid-west being evacuated from their homes and businesses by flood waters; and there are people still huddled under bridges in the cardboard boxes they call home.

I need to tell you that my long ago prayer was answered. I am now surrounded by large interconnecting circles of community; friends who share my spiritual path and my concerns for the people and the planet we live on. New Years Day I sat with three of my “herbie” friends and we agreed to get together the same time next year. Each one of us feels like we are treading shaky ground with finances, relationships, job security, or ….? We pledged to help one another get through whatever the next twelve months present, sharing equally the joys and the challenges. It was an emotional moment.

Today, many, many people will come together all over the country to help those whose lives are upside down. This is what national disasters do ~ they open people’s hearts and bring folks together. People helping people ~ creating community. It is important; I actually think it is VITAL for the survival of our species to learn this lesson. Are national disasters our Earth Mother’s way of helping us to remember how to treat one another?

Afterthought: Have you ever been amazed at how few casualties there are in the midst of huge and terrible calamities? Floods, tornadoes, hurricanes and fires that destroy thousands of acres, yet usually there are less than a handful of human lives lost. Its not just me, I have heard different people mention this fact. I dare to venture an idea to ponder; she is not trying to kill us off, she is offering us a chance to learn a lesson.

* annette

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