I’ve been at Conscious Impact camp for exactly two months now. Three weeks longer than planned already. By now, I was supposed to be back at work in Seattle, after visiting friends and family in Europe and introducing who I thought was my life partner to my parents. Everything is different now. Disease beset the world, my relationship, my being, and now we are mourning the losses and struggling to survive while locked into a very limited radius of activity, of thinking, of relating. What I write about these days is not a romantic travel log. My journal is filled with questions, grief, and hopes for a future that can still come. I intend to continue sharing here what’s true. But as a mentor once told me, “Preach from your scars, not your wounds”. It will take time.
For now, here is a reflection I wrote last week that captures the many elements – natural and metaphorical – that our little community was exposed to, digesting, embracing. Despite living in lockdown, a lot goes on here: weather changes, conversations, activities and rituals that we create. On the night of the full moon (which happened to be crystal clear), we gathered in men and women’s circles.
In these uncertain times I ask myself so many questions And I hear questions all around me, in your mouths and eyes, dear friends. Why am I stuck here? It's not fair. I had important plans this year! What should I do here? In this small radius of daily action. I want much more than this. Why can't I find clear answers that I need, to propel me forward as soon as this is over? To feel successful and in charge of life again. Uncertainty feels heavy and so frightening. Then I think of Rilke, or beloved poet-guide: "You have to live the questions. The point is to live everything." I look to nature and I see her changing moods from hour to hour. When the sun is visible he burns so hot and bright. The moment he is hidden shivering shadows descend back on us instantaneously. The rain has been torrential here out of season. Is this a lesson? Or coincidence? (Is there such a thing as coincidence?) The deluge washes away our human-made paths, plans, expectations. Testing our adaptability, hardiness, acceptance. Waters bogging down the soil. Yet cleansing and quenching too. Last night I woke to full moon shine. Illuminating the night world all around. Making visible that other side usually hidden to the waking mind. This morning fog eveloped us. Just like a soft, moist blanket. Pulled over our heads gently. Coaxing me to succumb to still and quiet inwardness. And then I saw a spider's web, the most perfect one I've ever come across. The morning light revealed its immaculate outward spiralling circles. And I thought: Maybe everything that matters in life moves in spirals. At first, having birthed the center point, all we see are closed loops for a while. We feel stuck, just going round and round in such small circles. But over time the circles widen, each one connecting to the next. Only in hindsight, from a higher vantage point, do we see that or lives can and do expand. What are the energies at work here? I ask, as we gather in men's and women's circles. Might they correspond to male and female archetypes in us? Does the feminine hold the fullness of the spiral? Already a potential just waiting to ripen inside of her? She intuits what the big picture is. And when she becomes aware of it, allows the spiral to grow slowly from inside her heart and soul, out into her actions in the world. Does the masculine set his sight on the outward world, searching wide and far for the fulfillment of that vision? He occasionally meets the spiral's edge, follows it for a while, only to lose sight of it again when he continues on his linear path. What would a marriage between the two look like? When energy and determination were directed onto the spiral path. Propelling forward outward manifestation of inward intuition. While being held, assured, that what they seek is already here and now and will emerge with patience and devotion.