As I write this, we are just past the Scorpio Full Moon. Scorpio, the sign associated with sex, death, transformation, the occult, is at it’s heart pointing to intimacy. Intimacy with one’s self and emotions, with other people, with Life itself. But going there, to the depths, can be scary. It requires letting go of control, whether in sex or in sitting alone in a room and feeling the depths of an unpleasant truth, or stepping into a wild place and realizing our vulnerability.
Yet the places that scare us are the places that heal us. We truly live when we remember our death. We need contact with our inner wildness to remember who we are and to honor who we are. We need wilderness and beings such as wolves and grizzly bears to remember that we live on a planet that is bigger than us, and we are not in control. Because control is the shadowy ‘toxic mimic’ of true power. It is precisely our attempts to control that strip us of our strength and personal autonomy. It is also our attempts to control that strip away honor and respect and lead to abuse.
In the case of our beloved, beautiful home planet, we see the destructive effects of our attempts to control in small ways in lawns plied with chemicals to keep them green; and in the bigger, more devastating form of giant dams, genetic engineering, and the systematic elimination of ‘threats’ of all kinds. Is it any wonder that visitors to places such as Yellowstone Park often act as if they are in a big zoo, walking up to elk and bison for photos?
But anyone who has spent anytime truly alone in a wild place knows the absolute freedom of not being in control. I saw this so clearly one day as I crested a meadow high in the Rockies, alone, and felt the exhilaration of the beauty, the burning heat of the sun, all held within the knowledge that a twisted ankle could be my end. The need for safety and control are the enemies of freedom.
True freedom, love and honor are borne from the intimacy of communion and partnership, even in the company of those who can kill us.
They share the stillness born of long experience in the bush; neither would think of carrying a weapon here. Our stillness is a wordless message to the lions that we mean them no disturbance and no harm. Without speaking we walk respectfully away.
I know, it’s a big title – how to save the Earth. In truth, we only need to save ourselves. When we stop running away from real intimacy with Her wildness, our wildness, we will have the power to save the Earth.