I was captivated by another tree today – the Great Oak! The age, strength, wisdom, wrinkles and twists of life left me wondering what aspects of life this tree had stood to witness…what had passed it by…what had been noticed? And still she stands!
I’ve been thinking a lot about the way death is held and handled in the natural world, how different that may be to our various societal approaches to death, and possible reasons for this.
It seems that life can flow through aspects of the natural world that have died and are decaying.
New light can shine through, giving new perspectives.
Unexpected growth can come, which may or may not prove useful as an end, but can be a process which brings a different kind of beauty.
A form of protection can also be found to enable a nourishing and healing end for the surrounding community.
Sometimes, rather than an end, there is potential and the possibility of a beginning. Before this possibility is realised there is a period of rest and recuperation.
That rest occurs in community; it’s each taking care of one another’s needs…
…until finally there are the first signs of new life, growth, a new season.
With news stories such as this Triple Death Crash or reports of 11 US School shootings this year, it is little wonder that we often struggle to see death as a positive part of life. Equally losing a long loved relative can feel like just as much of a tragedy to those who grieve as the stories which make up our headlines. How often do we stand in solidarity through these times, not only in the weeks following but, in the months and even years that those left behind seek to adjust to a different way of life…a life without. I was astounded to find that for a major bereavement work places generally give three days of compassionate leave, and that is it. There are many front facing professions where this is just not enough for a person to recover to a state of being able to function. Equally after a few short weeks, no more than months, you are expected to be back to normal and yet this season of grieving can last well beyond expected time frames. Do we expect too much of ourselves, of one another? Do we allow safe spaces to voice our pain, our loss and our grief? How can we do this better?
“And let thy feet millenniums hence be set in midst of knowledge”
#577 #symbols and #reminders are all around us as things we surround ourselves with. We may even disclose aspects of our identity through them. I’ve worn a cross in the past to remind me to think before I speak, to avoid reacting. This particular #celticcross has a circle around the intersection to symbolise the eternal love of God. The vertical stem serves as a reminder to look up to #heaven for #wisdom, whilst the horizontal arms are about finding #balance and taking care in those daily interactions. It also serves as a reminder of Jesus’ death on the cross. Do these reminders really help to shape our #behaviours in the moment? Should we be seeking to control our reactions, or should we allow greater #authenticity? would people get hurt if we were more reactionary?
#561 I rarely stay still, but sometimes the #distance between one place and another can feel #short and easy, at other times it feels #immense and challenging. The #challenging elements of the journey are the times when I grow the most, but that knowledge doesn’t make it any easier. Creating a #safespace and doing what feeds me does help though – pitching a tent to create that safe space and reading the #wisdom of those before me might be one example of this. What feeds you?
#460 My evening with #youthgroup ended with #starsparklers which I’ve never seen before!!! Sat round a #fire with #hotchocolate, #toastingmarshmallows we talked about what the fire and #trees might tell us if they could talk…put roots down and live for now – don’t put it off until later because you’re busy were some of the wisest insights! #lovemywork
#441 It seemed incredibly apt to come across this girl holding the #flameofwisdom on #internationaldayofthegirl It’s beyond shocking that even in our world today the girl child can be put to death at birth in some cultures for simply not being a boy. How much does society give #equalvalue to men and women alike? Where does it fail?