If We Can Survive Our Times

Image by Diane Petrilli

“A woman who has uncovered and honors her intimacy with the earth through developing a relationship with nature or through the power within her own body carries a wisdom of infinite mystery and potential. She moves through life with one foot in a strange ocean, one on the solid land of her ordinary life. This is not just an idea, but a way to live. Mystics, artists, and mothers of young children know this ability to be half-absorbed in unnamable creative forces.”

— Hilary Hart


“The answer to why so many of us have difficulties is because our ancestors spent centuries here under unrelentingly brutal conditions. Generation after generation, our bodies stored trauma and intense survival energy, and passed these on to our children and grandchildren. Most of us also passed down resilience and love, of course. But, as we saw with my grandmother — and as we see with so many other human beings — resilience and love aren’t sufficient to completely heal all trauma. Often, at least some of the trauma continues”

― Resmaa Menakem


For many years now, the East has followed the West down the path of technological and material development, to the point of neglecting its own spiritual values. In our world, technology is the main force behind economics and politics, but those in the forefront of science have begun to see something similar to what the spiritual disciplines of the East discovered long ago. If we can survive our times, the gap that separates science and spirituality will close, and East and West will meet one another on the path to discover true mind. Those in whom the seeds of this important endeavor have already been sown can start working towards that convergence right now, using their own daily mindful lives.

- Thich Nhat Hanh

We live on a planet in crisis, a crisis wholly due to the stunted consciousness of human beings. Our disconnection from nature and feminine values of respect for life has pushed us to the edge of real disaster. The current troubles are just a foretaste of future lessons we’ll be given if we fail to cure our cavalier and cruel vision of existence.

Our politicians are generally not equipped with enough depth and vision to understand our situation, much less see a viable way forward. We have been led into this impasse by people with small vision, mostly men, it must be said.

A new kind of human is going to have to emerge out of this crisis, a being of greater sensitivity and empathy, a greater ability to nurture connections with nature in all its aspects. The feminine mind can heal the degraded web of life because it instinctively feels its heartbeat, but our civilization has lost that ability.

Who are the people capable of pointing us in the right direction now? Should we trust our elected representatives and business leaders? Do these people understand anything? Usually not, unfortunately. Too often their minds have been captured by a culture that worships power and money before all else.

I hope to see the rise of a feminine consciousness in everything from government to farming to education and business. Our cultural assumptions of separation from nature and any sense of responsibility for its well being is an existential threat to all life on earth. It’s amazing that seeing that reality and feeling its urgency is rare.

All living beings partake of one consciousness in one way or another. Our differences are dances on the surface, life having creative fun, but everything comes out of one source. We may call that source by different names, Great Spirit, Allah, God, Zeus, Thor and a million more, but the idea that we’re down here and God is up there has trapped us in dystopia.

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