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  • Writer's pictureSara McFarland

Storying with Earth

Each being, by being itself, is telling its story, singing it’s creation. Listen, what is the Red Kite crying out or the fox shouting out in her barking? Each and every being is alive, is luminous, is filled with sentience and awareness, has their own dreams and stories, webs of relationship and families. Each being is telling its story as it creates its life, moment to moment. The world is continually storying itself, singing its belonging and its place in the web and we, as human creatures, are storying with it. Entangled and inseparable, both/and creatures with wild and civilized elements, multi faceted and multi perspectived beings, we look through windows into the Storying through dreams, numinous visions, encounters with more than human Others, visions of our personal Mythos, and the great Myths. Belonging to the Web of Life, we were never not interwoven with the wild world and all her peoples. Forgetting is something that we use as an escape from the intensity of perceiving the world in all their beauty and horror. Forgetting is a necessity in modern culture, partly because we no longer have the rituals needed to be in reciprocal relationship with Earth, and the grief of lost ancestral ways is too painful. Forgetting is also the step before remembering. Now is the time, as a species and as individual people, to remember. When we tell stories of our belonging, of encounters with the Wild Others, we bless our wounds, we heal and become whole, reclaiming our ancestral memories of the lands from which we come, as well as an alive relationship with the eco-web within which we live.

Feeding life with our beauty might be our most important task as a human part of Earth Community, which is to say, embodying beautifully our essential gifts and talents, our bigness and creativity, as well as our human vulnerability. Stories, when told beautifully, are a gift back to the ancestors and to the spirit of the story. When told, a story that has ignited our hearts, resonates in us, announcing our place over and over in the family of things (thank you Mary Oliver).

When we are blessed to have a numinous encounter with the Holy in the Wild, we recognize both our belonging and our essence, our insignificance and our one-ness with life. When we come home, carrying the precious jewel of the experience, we have a choice. We can either share our story with our community or keep silent, truly, sometimes Photo by Luis Enrique Ibarra from Unsplash

numinous encounters are too holy to be spoken.

If we choose to tell the story of that time, in telling it, the experience enters even more deeply into our bodies and our psyches, becoming a force of shaping and change in us. It is risky business to say yes to being changed by wolf, or bear, or shrew, or jay. The ritual reciprocity of the telling honors the agency and sentience of those we speak of as well as those we tell the story to. In this way, the story itself might be medicine for our people and a remembering of human ways of belonging. However, equally as human, we can also choose to minimize the experience, refusing the gift by telling ourselves “nothing happened”. In doing so, we are throwing away the significance and the beauty, the depth and meaning that might change our whole way of being in the world. If we are too terrified to see and hear the stories of the wildest ones, how can we hear the beauty of our own stories? How can we tell our story so that we are changed and changing? This is Soulstorytelling.

How we tell our stories matters. Who we tell them to matters. What if telling a story were your soul speaking? What if it were you, singing your place in the cosmos, telling your story of belonging? What if telling the story of your meeting with one of the Deer or Boar people, were the story of an encounter with some holy creature, a god even? What if you remembered you are kin with the wild ones, and not separate? What if telling a story were a magical spell of becoming whole, remembering our belonging to Earth Community? What if telling a story were medicine for the ache and sorrow and despair of our times - a path of connection, of heart, of community building, of giveaway and gift to our people? It might ask you to become a bigger version of yourself or a more soulful form of you in the world. And that, certainly, would change something in the collective in these times.

Stories can be maps through landscapes of our deepest longing and grief to offer our medicine to a dying and transforming world, to bless, to transform with. Stories can give us a template to follow of how to die, descend and return, initiated into deeper knowing of how to live a life of beauty. And they can be glimpses of how to support the larger Earth Community (of which we are a part) move through our collective transformation.

We might ask: What am I carrying as medicine for the world? How do I find it and how do I learn to offer it? How do I tend to my own wild soul and the wild beloved? How am I called to be in Reciprocal Relationship with this eco-place that I live with/in? How do I belong? Where do I come from and where is Home?

These questions have been asked as long as there have been humans to ask them and Stories are some of the answers from our Ancestors… shall we listen and come alive again through remembering?

With great and wild Love,

Sara aka Spider's Daughter, spinner of tales

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