Painting by Viktor Mikhailovich Vasnetsov
Given the chaotic change and heightened stress of the past 18 months, one could arguably say what’s bigger than a COVID pandemic into its fourth wave. I suspect that the drought-induced pestilence (i.e., grasshoppers, war, etc.), fire, and flood (climate change) accompanying this “plague” might be your response. In concert, these large-scale events are interpreted by modern Christain writings as the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and presumed as punishments from God. In the Bible book titled, Ezekiel (a Hebrew prophet), the horsemen are referred to as “the ones whom the Lord has sent to patrol the earth” causing it to rest quietly. In this more ancient interpretation, the four horsemen are identified as “sword, famine, wild beasts, and plague.” And here ends my limited knowledge of Christianity or other organized religions. However, all faith-based systems share in common the belief that big events in our personal and collective lives are warning signals. Whether you or I believe in God, big events are unmistakably becoming our “new normal”.
On a very personal note, the past week has dropped two additional big human events into my lap — a separation and a pending death. The “loss” of a loved one is a big challenge to process at any time. Add to that, a second person’s diagnosis of terminal cancer and shock sets in. As is typical, colliding with big events brings on bigger than usual emotions. For fives days, I weathered emotional waves of grief. A good day followed by a teary day followed by a good day, and so on. And today, I recognize this cleansing cycle resulted in a feeling that my insides were shaken loose and emptied out. Simply said, I am not the same person as I was a week ago.
So, what’s an ordinary person to do when big events orchestrate big changes, and chaos is evident everywhere? Past experience taught me to rest quietly and allow my big awakenings to emerge. The only action I need to take is to watch for what the warning signals mean. Sitting patiently in this “ditch of discovery” (and possibly doubt) is the precursor to understanding (big awakenings). When understanding emerges so will the clarity for what action or direction I need to take. As of today, it is not the time to act but the time to deeply listen to my inner experience and attentively watch for signposts in my outer world. Here’s one that just now flashed across my computer screen — in her posting, Marianne Williamson quoted Alfred Lord Tennyson, “Come my friends, ’tis not too late to seek a newer world.” And in the words of Arundhati Roy, “Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.” As Marianne followed up, “And so can I”.
Below is a poem from my latest poetry book titled, Mad Woman Laughing, that speaks to this transformation process leading to a “newer” world.
Memory resides in every organic cell,
making Earth’s inhabitants
storehouses of all that has ever been.
Spirit, too, dwells in each body,
permeating all life forms
with answers for every possibility.
The physical body houses history.
The spiritual body glimpses the future.
One need only enter the inner silence
to unearth mystery, adventure and a
perfect plan for mastering life’s journey.
In this silence, unknown voices
mingle with voices of experience
to unveil wisdom for the present.
And that’s good medicine.
May our big events and big awakenings inspire positive results for all beings. Namaste.