A friend asked me, how do you live facing the possibility, even probability of planetary destruction? Her question resonates in me. If we truly want to see, our situation is desperate. There is a real threat that human life on earth will end.
When I dare to see the catastrophe unfolding on our planet, I realize there is no “how to” which could fix the situation. The massiveness and complexity of what is happening explode any possible strategy. I don’t mean that there is no action required. But I feel deeply that the only appropriate response to the the pain of the earth and its beings is Love. Love, other than fear, is not pointing to the future with apocalyptic images, but worships what is now. Now life still breathes, vibrates, grows, rots: the cat on my lap purrs, the tree I lean against vibrates, rotting leaves spread their warm perfume, the snowdrop pushes through the hard soil, the day rises out of the night. So beautiful, so amazing. I feel deep reverence when I see what offers itself now. The devotion that arises when I see life’s offering is a strong remedy from fear and despair.
When I love life’s offering, it hurts to throw away plastic waste. When I feel how I am contributing to the mass of plastic that kills life in the oceans, tears rise into my eyes. I AM the whale killed by plastic waste in its stomach. The brutality of producing and consuming so much plastic that the earth cannot digest is overwhelming. The absence of heart.
Yet when I stay awake I can see where this emotion becomes a story. It’s a story that reinforces thoughts of guilt and lack, letting me drift away from love. Following this story, I might be hard on myself that I didn’t succeed to find mozzarella that is not packed in plastic. Shouldn’t I better be a consequent vegan? Would I produce less plastic waste then? But does it help, when so many others use much more plastic than I do? With such a reaction, I add to the damaging situation humanity co-created – losing touch with the heart, getting lost in strategies of the mind. I try to make plans how to avoid any plastic, plans which can never be fulfilled completely, feeding a feeling of guilt and “not being enough”. I think I am guilty, others are guilty.
Fear and guilt
The desperation coming forth out of anxiety, guilt and lack awakens neediness in us. It leads to greed, to grasping and consuming more and more in order to be fulfilled and safe. A desire that never is satisfied, leaving us with a feeling of abandonment, separation, wanting even more.This vicious circle strengthens the kingdom of the mind that forgot its vital source and tries to control the world in its favor with strategies and programs. This very mindset lead to the excessive use of fossil resources that damages and destroys life on earth.
Not following this vicious circle doesn’t mean I don’t care. On the contrary, filtering out the stories of guilt lets the pain come in fully when I watch the potato field next to my garden being covered with poison. There’s a storm of rage and agony in my body, and then I breathe further, I turn around, I see a rose opening, and I feel joy and admiration. This rose is here NOW in all its beauty and innocence, it can’t help opening, poison or not. There is still love. Just keeping my eyes open and seeing, I can feel it. I care for the rose, I give it compost and water. I reduce plastic garbage. I reduce flight trips. I give expression to love in my actions. Just love, no story, nothing to justify or to explain. No guilt.
The voice of love
If I look at humanity with the eyes of love instead of guilt, I see that the greed that destroys the planet is the despair of an abandoned child. Does it help this child to punish and despise it? It just desires to be embraced, caressed, it wants to relax. When I let myself fall into the arms of love, when I feel nourished, sustained, whole, what then do I hear the voice of love whisper?
Forget about guilt, it says, your guilt, and also the guilt of others, and let yourself fall even more deeply into me, into the earth. Feel my nourishment, my bounty, my comfort. Let yourself be impregnated, be caressed as a baby in the womb of the mother you thought you never had. Guilt is what bestows the feeling on you that you are an abandoned being, motherless. Let yourself be fed by your mother, the earth, by your mother, the cosmos, and be a mother yourself, birthing life out of love. Rest in still-ness and let me speak and act through your heart. Don’t bargain, you don’t need to know what the outcome will be. I, Love, can only unfold if you let all the other so-called “options” go. There is only THIS, NOW. No answer, no “how to”. Just my voice.