I happen to have lived in Austin, Texas for the past 4 years and, as many know, we experienced some wild and wooly weather last week. Once I wrapped my mind around the fact that Central Texas rain is not at all like California or Oregon rain – both places I have lived for longer periods of time – I adjusted to the fact that sudden, and I mean sudden, flash flooding was part of the landscape around these parts.
What no one told me was that tornadoes could also be part of nature’s wildness here, mostly because they almost never touch down in Austin. Though I wasn’t in town for last weeks tornado touch down, I saw the aftermath. This event took me into reflection around the wildness and unpredictable quality of the natural world – something that the human race has attempted to tame, domesticate and destroy since the beginning of the industrial age.
By those very actions, in attempting to create illusive and nonexistent “security”, dire consequences to the planet we live upon are very much a regular occurrence these days. Those consequences also reside within us.
We are finally beginning to realize that in this attempt to control – which we can never do anyway – nature would teach us deep soul lessons. Lessons that would illuminate the unconscious actions we have taken to separate ourselves from not only that which we are made from, but from the substance our very life depends on. Our own “wild souls” if you will, each and every cell of our being intimately connected with and from the natural world.
Just think about it. Even the very act of breathing, such a simple and profound life giving action, has also been captured into a tight container of separation from the wholeness of who we are.
The shallow and contracted breath – fed by scarcity, fear or anxiety – that so many of us have on board, represents to me this loss of the wild, untamed, and natural breath that is our innate and direct link to aliveness.
As we stare into the face of a smart phone or computer, we have lost the essential pleasure and connection that is made while in the presence of and gazing in awe at the wonder of a tree, sitting in the pristine silence of the desert, swimming with a dolphin in breath union, taking steps upon the rocks that make up the mountain, or feeling the expanse of a prairie – all reminding us of how vast and precious is life and who we are within it.
The resiliency of simply allowing the natural unfolding of life through the act of breathing connects us to that which sustains and nurtures our well being.
Perhaps if each of us paid attention to reconnecting to the wild, flowing, fully embodied breath we have been given, it would become an integral and vitally important part of the necessary foundation for cultivating and returning to our own innate wildness.
Taking time to explore the landscape of breath, the terrain that it travels, and the vitality that ebbs and flows from its very nature is an exercise in returning “home” to the wild soul of our being.
Delving into the wildness of this poetic prose of a book brought me “home”. Home to the elements that make up the “wild being” of who and what I am. The elements of Earth’s scared natural world, calling out to us so powerfully at this time in our planet’s history to come back “home” to the inner landscapes of our wild souls – reconnecting and communing in ways that shift the delicate balance back from the ego’s domestication, taming and destructive actions – into a natural state of cohabiting harmony in intimate and deep listening relationship with the Earth.
I could not stop reading this exquisitely powerful book, and am now on my second read through, stopping to ponder and inhabit the landscapes and the words that flow through me onto the journal page. At times I was reminded of John O’Donohue’s writing that draws us in to a much larger context from a place of simply Being. It is not just a “healing” that needs to happen here, but a complete return to absolute devotion to the wild landscapes and elements that bring us life with every breath we take. Mary Reynolds Thompson has brilliantly succeeded in opening that space for us to explore within and without, guiding us to take effective and conscious action from the wildness of all life – from the depths of our souls. – Gaye Abbott, author of Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath, Weekly Breathing Spaces to Delight, Rest and Reflect In.
Gaye Abbott, RYT assists individuals to dissolve the layers that block well being and reveal, through a combination of the energy medicine of Jin Shin Jyutsu, yoga therapy and breath re-patterning, and as spiritual mentor/guide/coach, the larger purpose and co-creative expression that we are here for.
For those interested in receiving private sessions please contact Gaye at: JoyfulGaye@NaturalPassages.com. Travel to your location in the U.S. or globally is available as is Skype mentoring/coaching. Please inquire.