<March 20/12.>

In keeping with my recent (admittedly inexplicable ) attempt to keep blog post titles to one word (I never said I'm not weird, people!), here is yet another – although this posting really has nothing to do with spring, as such – it just so happens the thoughts sprang up as I was walking on lo, this first day of Spring 2012. (It’s virtually become summer overnight here, where I live, northeast of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. We pretty much actually skipped spring. Can you say climate change ??)

  • Pressure cooker
  • Conversation
  • Separation
  • Collapse

These are the 4 main things I was musing upon on this morning’s walk.

Pressure Cookers: I was thinking about these because I have a sense that there may be more than a few people on the planet who bear some resemblance to pressure cookers. (I’ve owned one of these things for decades now & use it mostly for cooking dry chickpeas or other beans; chickpeas that you cook from dry are ever so much tastier than any you buy in cans, & no, my pressure cooker has never, ever blown up on me (yet), it’s been MAHvellous.) Meaning, people-wise, they keep their frustrations & pain & anger & all those somewhat…troublesome… emotions/feelings locked up inside their minds/bodies, roiling endlessly & recycling endlessly (talk about a kind of recycling we can do nicely without!!), & then, eventually, they BLOW!!! Eek, Egad & OMG.

Conversation: Pressure cooker types don’t seem to realize (perhaps are constitutionally incapable of realizing?) that simple conversation is the great healer. I’ve been known to say (you can quote me if you like) that conversation is really the whole darn karmic enchilada. Conversation opens us up – sparks inspiration & community feeling & vast possibility & potential – & it also allows us to let off steam…safely, without causing WWIII. So we don’t wind up blowing up like the aforementioned pressure cooker (& hey, readers, conversation is FREE, no less!) Quotation I love: “It’s one of the secrets of the world. We all have the key to one another’s locks. But until we start to talk, we don’t know it.” – Michael Silverblatt, host of KCRW’s ‘Bookworm’ radio show

Separation: The word “separation” conjures up a few possible meanings for me. The first that springs to mind is the thought of a couple separating. Been there, done that, got the scars, if not the T-shirt. Another, of course, is the tragic separation of humans from Nature (this happened a very long time ago) & humans from each other (I guess this happened at the same time as our separation from Nature). Loss of community. Families – the thought that came to me on my walk was that many children are now raised largely separately from their families, even, as opposed to by family members who love them to pieces. (Not trying to lay any guilt trips here, OK? Just trying to tell it like it is – knowing all the while that my efforts to tell the truth are not always appreciated, exactly.)

Thoughtful people understand that all this separation is killing us. Killing the planet. Making us all sick. (Literally. Can you say cancer epidemic??). Community is what we lost eons ago – what we crave, what we need. & the loss of which has led to the crazy current state we now find ourselves in as a species. (Apt quote: “Energy always flows either toward hope, community, love, generosity, mutual recognition, and spiritual aliveness or it flows toward despair, cynicism, fear that there is not enough, paranoia about the intentions of others, and a desire to control.” ~ Michael Lerner, quoted in The Great Turning – From Empire to Earth Community, by David Korten)

Collapse: Lots of us are kinda worried these days that our civilization (using the term loosely, ha ha) is headed (probably rapidly) for the most gigantic possible cock-up. Crash. Collapse. It’s a bit of a worrisome thing to contemplate, isn’t it?? Yup. Yup, yup, yup. I have no pat answers or solutions to offer, dear Reader. Sorry about that. It’s very worrisome to me, too; trust me. I don’t subscribe to the practice of denial about it – I just don’t think denial is helpful. The problems are a little too big to sweep under the carpet (we’ve been sweeping them under the carpet for so long already that they’ve grown to the size of mountain ranges). They are not to be stopped – & ignoring them only makes them worse. (That’s how they’ve grown so bloody monumental in the 1st place.) A friend who is not into denial or psychic numbing (who lives in an area rife with both, actually) has recommended Carolyn Baker to me, whom she discovered at Collapse Network. I know that the Transition movement is picking up steam – a very positive development. Some of us have joined or are joining eco-villages or intentional communities &/or are working to build community where we currently live. I also highly recommend Joanna Macy for her insights about “despair and empowerment.” I blogged about a despair & empowerment workshop here, & Joanna Macy’s Web site is here (2 great JM quotes: “It is good to realize that falling apart is not such a bad thing. Indeed, it is as essential to evolutionary and psychological transformation as the cracking of outgrown shells” & “Telling the truth is like making oxygen” (she said this at an event in Toronto).

Well. Thus endeth (rather abruptly) today’s musings. (I never promised you a rose garden, did I??)

Challenging times. Definitely, definitely, definitely.

I continue with my usual coping/life strategies:


p.s. Some other relevant blog postings:

p.p.s. & a great blog site I recommend is the ‘how to save the world’ one.  Hooey this fellow (Dave Pollard) writes well & recommends good stuff to check out!

‘Quote of the day’ with this post: “The world shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” – Anaïs Nin