Every particle of every thing rocks, water, flour, human
has been in the same place flaming
in the heart of our ancient sun
before the earth
came flying out of it.
The irises in your eyes
the tissue of roses
the slow giant rocks in mountainheads
were all born flaming
locked in the sun as it drifted
like a light on dark water.
Is not the sky a father and the earth a mother, and are not all living things with feet or wings or roots their children?
And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
There is a great deal of talk these days about saving the environment. We must, for the environment sustains our bodies. But as humans we also require support for our spirits, and this is what certain kinds of places provide. The catalyst that converts any physical location -- any environment if you will -- into a place, is the process of experiencing deeply. A place is the piece of the whole environment that has been claimed by feelings. Viewed simply as a life-support system, the earth is an environment. Viewed as a resource that sustains our humanity, the earth is a collection of places. We never speak, for example, of an environment we have known; it is always places we have known -- and recall. We are homesick for places, we are reminded of places, it is the sounds and smells and sights of places which haunt us and against which we often measure our present.
So rests the sky against the earth. The dark still tarn in the lap of the forest. As a husband embraces his wife's body in faithful tenderness, so the bare ground and trees are embraced by this still, high, light of the morning.
I feel an ache of longing to share in this embrace, to be united and absorbed. A longing like carnal desire, but directed towards earth, water, sky, and returned by the whispers of the trees, the fragrance of the soil, the caresses of the wind, the embrace of water and light. Content? No, no, no -- but refreshed, rested -- while waiting.
The earth, born in fire, baptized by lightning, since before life's beginning has been and is, a fire planet.
On a clear winter morning, just as the sun rises high enough for its slanting rays to shine horizontally through the trees, disclosing each branch and needle, backlit and rimmed with fire, each intricate facets of the snow crystals distinct and glittering, each contour and dip of the land plainly outlined by the conforming snow, I lay my track through the snow -- a silent listener awaiting Being. And Being responds. I move so silently and swiftly that deer, rabbits, and weasels are surprised and caught him in their inner lives; so swiftly and silently they do not flee but stand out in their beings. Each tree-being, aspen and fir, lit from within, stands out. The shape of the land is shone forth more clearly than in the summer, when its contours are masked and hidden by vegetation. The earth more present, the sky more present, by, the human, more present in total awarenessÖ
The grand show is eternal. Eternal sunrise, eternal sunset, eternal dawn and gloaming, on seas and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls.
Returned me, oh sun,
to my wild destiny,
rain of the ancient wood,
bringing me back to the aroma of swords
that fall from the sky,
the solitary peace of pasture and rock,
the damp at the river-margins,
the smell of the larch tree,
the wind alive like a heart
beating in the crowded restlessness
of the towering araucaria.
Earth, give me back your pure gifts,
the towers of silence which rose
from the solemnity of their roots.
I want to go back to being what I have not been,
and learn to go back from such deeps
that amongst all natural things
I could live or not live; it does not matter
to be one stone more, the dark stone,
the pure stone which the river bears away.
Once in a while you find a place on earth that becomes your very own. A place undefined. Waiting for you to bring your color, your self. A place untouched, unspoiled, undeveloped. Raw, honest, and haunting. No one, nothing is telling you how to feel or who to be. Let the mountains have you for a dayÖ
For a great tree death comes as a gradual transformation. Its vitality ebbs slowly. Even when life has abandoned it entirely it remains a majestic thing. On some hilltop a dead tree may dominate the landscape for miles around. Alone among living things it retains its character and dignity after death. Plans wither; animals disintegrates. But a dead tree may be as arresting, as filled with personality, in death as it is in life. Even in its final moments, when the massive trunk lies prone and it has moldering into a ridge covered with mosses and fungi, it arrives at a fitting and noble end. It enriches and refreshes the earth. And later, as part of other green and growing things, it rises again.
Unseen buds, infinite, hidden well,
Under the snow and ice, under the darkness, in every square or cubic inch,
Germinal, exquisite, in delicate lace, microscopic, unborn,
Like babies in wombs, latent, folded, compact, sleeping;
Billions of billions, and trillions of trillions of them waiting,
(On earth and in the sea -- the universe -- the stars there in the heavens.)
Urging slowly, surely forward, forming endless,
And waiting ever more, forever more behind.
For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus - and non-believers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.
Mankind . . . possesses two supreme blessings. First of these is the goddess Demeter, or Earth whichever name you choose to call her by. It was she who gave to man his nourishment of grain. But after her there came the son of Semele, who matched her present by inventing liquid wine as his gift to man. For filled with that good gift, suffering mankind forgets its grief; from it comes sleep; with it oblivion of the troubles of the day. There is no other medicine for misery.
Fill every glass, for wine inspires us,And fires us With courage, love and joy. Women and wine should life employ. Is there ought to else on earth desirous?
He caused the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth; And wine that maked glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengthened manís heart.
There is this long, wonderful history of the human race written in blood. We have this tendency to just take what we want. And that's how we treat the natural world as well. There's this sense of we're here, we're big, we've got the guns, we've got the technology, therefore we're entitled to every damn thing on this planet. That's not how it works and we're going to find out the hard way if we don't kind of wise up and start seeking a life that's in balance with the natural life on Earth.
Being human signifies, for each one of us, belonging to a class, a society, a country, a continent and a civilization; and for us European earth-dwellers, the adventure played out in the heart of the New World signifies in the first place that it was not our world and that we bear responsibility for the crime of its destruction.
The mountains, rivers, earth, grasses, trees, and forests are always emanating a subtle, precious light, day and night, always emanating a subtle, precious sound, demonstrating and expounding to all people the unsurpassed ultimate truth.
As long as you are not aware of the continual law of Die and Be Again, you are merely a vague guest on a dark Earth.
I find it difficult to imagine an afterlife, such as Christians, or at any rate many religious people, conceive it, believing that the conversations with relatives and friends interrupted here on earth will be continued in the hereafter.
If a man walks in the woods for love of them half of each day, he is in danger of being regarded as a loafer. But if he spends his days as a speculator, shearing off those woods and making the earth bald before her time, he is deemed an industrious and enterprising citizen.
The earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth. All things are connected like the blood that unites one family.
Man did not weave the web of life; he is merely a strand in it.
Whatever he does to the web he does to himself.
Traditional people of Indian nations have interpreted the two roads that face the light-skinned race as the road to technology and the road to spirituality. We feel that the road to technology.... has led modern society to a damaged and seared earth. Could it be that the road to technology represents a rush to destruction, and that the road to spirituality represents the slower path that the traditional native people have traveled and are now seeking again? The earth is not scorched on this trail. The grass is still growing there.
Walk lightly in the spring; Mother Earth is pregnant.