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Anxiety, Apathy and Choice

The other day I watched a talk by Renee Lertzman, a researcher and consultant who works on how to communicate effectively around the environmental crisis. Her approach has to do with using insights and tools from psychoanalysis and psychotherapy to support people in experiencing their complex and often conflicting feelings around these troubling issues. I noticed that Joanna Macy was in the audience where Lertzman was speaking and her work was frequently given the nod. Even so, the challenge...

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Switching the Bubbles

I’m hearing a soft, flat whistle from somewhere in front of me, but it’s impossible to tell exactly which direction. Seep! Followed by silence. Something is making the birds anxious enough that they will no longer reveal their location. Later when we go inside, Jon Young explains that what I heard was a robin alarming. This particular call is strategically difficult to pinpoint. As he pieces together observations from others in the group, a pattern emerges. The alarms and subsequent wave of...

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Reading Mark Strand

  Since Mark Strand died last weekend I’ve been re-reading his poems. Years ago I wondered to myself what his passing would be like. Death seemed to be a constant muse for him. I was spooked by his ability to stare at it in such a sustained, unflinching way. And I admired it. In my youth I couldn’t imagine a more difficult subject. Perhaps that’s still true. Strand seemed to stalk Death as much as it did him. What would the consummation of such a courtship be like? Now he is there. These...

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Become My Body

    I have not blogged in a while because my beautiful german shepherd Saxon died recently. It was sudden. And utterly heart-breaking. The thing about loving a dog is that they make it safe to give your whole heart. And they give themselves to you completely. We human beings inevitably hurt and wound each other… carry resentments and grievances… but with a dog the love is pure and without shadows, and to lose such love is devastating.   Before the Beginning ~ by...

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Another Earth Day Poem

  As I did last year when I launched this blog, I want to share a poem in celebration of Earth Day. This poem has become all the more special and comforting to me since I lost my own human mother some years ago. I use it in contemplation… feeling into what it truly is to relate to Earth in this way… with reverence and profound affection. I recite this poem to Her. On this day. And Mother’s Day.   We Have A Beautiful Mother ~ Alice Walker We have a beautiful mother...

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Gleanings #3

I wanted to recommend two videos from a talk by David Abram. I’m reading his book Becoming Animal at the moment and loving it. These are short clips, and the quality is poor, but they are worth watching. In the first he speaks passionately of our flight from embodiment and its consequences. In the second he tells a marvelous story about an encounter with the more-than-human world. Lovely. I also enjoyed this interview of Paul Kingsnorth by Rob Hopkins of the Transition Towns movement. Having...

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