Monthly Archives: May 2014
More often than occasionally I have referred to the order of the universe and life as a symphony or song in harmony and that everyone knows that song. If you think about the actual sounds of nature there are many soothing sounds. Of course animals sing, whistle, trumpet, etc creating a cacophony of many sounds and in the case of whales are considered songs. There is the shriek and moan of the wind, the staccato sound of hail or rain on the roof, the crash of thunder, the rhythmic crash of the waves, the roar of a cataract, the trickling melodious sound of a brook, the groan of the wind bending trees, the rustle of leaves and the roar of a mud slide or avalanche. There is the crackle-pop of a fire, the keening sound of blowing sand and the grind of ice floes. Sit by a river or lake at night and here the bull frog’s deep bass croak, the spring peepers and the cicadas. Scientists continually find new “sounds” in space. Whether by sound or by internal primordial memory, life and the earth seem to move according to an internal rhythm.
Approximately three months ago I began the thought processs that took the tentative first steps towards a journey by SUV, first, into the Black Hills of South Dakota, then Montana, Wyoming, etc. My goal was to find and document the sacred aboriginal places, photograph them and write about them. I would be gone around a month. This actually being only part of my goal; the other being to help myself continue the healing process of the ending of my 35 tear marriage. For me, nature plays an important part of any healing process. I was and am, however, hesitant to do any extended road trip by myself due to health issues with my Parkinson’s Disease. I coincidentally, had been communicating with a woman online, Annette, who kept asking, “Want to go somewhere, around the block, Italy?” I thought it strange she would string around the block and Italy in the same sentence but since then have gotten better acquainted with Annette. I believe now that Annette is the type of person who can let herself become a part of any environment she happens to be in, whether as commonplace as around the block or Italy. I began to entertain the thought of introducing her to my plan and did. She seemed intrigued by the idea.
So, Annette and I spent several hours on the phone getting to know each other. If she agrees to do this project with me we will be doing a couple of short trips to make sure we don’t go berserk and kill each other in a month.
I think if this project happens it will be about finding our own personal sacred places as much as the documentation.
Will you ever begin to understand the meaning of the very soil beneath your feet? From a grain of sand to a great mountain, all is sacred. Yesterday and tomorrow exist eternally upon this continent. We natives are guardians of this sacred place.~ Peter Blue Cloud, Mohawk
To the Native American and most aboriginal people everything they experienced in their natural environment was sacred. They revered the rhythm and beauty of the natural processes since their very survival depended on them. They well knew the costs of violating the rules of nature because to violate them meant death and living in harmony with it meant life. The earth and the environment were not seen as something to conquer but to live in peaceful harmony with.
It was a simple philosophy of why change something that works? They knew their vulnerability and the dangers of nature yet did not consider it a an enemy. Life’s lessons were simple and they knew that to resist the flow of nature around them meant they would not survive. They co-existed along with all other species and considered themselves only as partners, no less, no more.
When the white man came, he came as a conqueror and a lord of the land. According to his book of religion, the Bible, he had dominion of the earth and had free rein to cut down, destroy and remake with no fear of his god’s wrath. The white man soon learned the power of the wilderness yet instead of finding easier paths, renewed his onslaught to conquer and bring it to its knees. Yet we only dent the surface and instead of conquering we make it a toxic world, unforgiving spewing hydrocarbons, mercury, oil, etc. while the earth answers with melting glaciers, higher sea levels, changes in weather patterns, violent storms, global warming and we refuse to see that nature quietly and forcefully retaliates, never in a hurry but in it’s own time and when least expecting it we may all be replaced with a new species or maybe nothing will since we play no part in the necessary eco systems that nourish life in general. We are here but by the grace of nature and we will be shrugged off like the parasites we are; nothing lost, everything to gain.