In the time of fire and rain

Can we celebrate the rain? Through smoke and fog, I yearn for the tap, soft velvet cloud motions moving over the landscape – with the piercing joy of rain. I notice how I hear that some weather is seen as good and other weather is considered bad, undesirable, or unwanted.

I have inside a celebration of all seasons.

I have my preferred season of harvest, colors in trancelike splendour, and then suddenly but over time the trees let go-and the leaves fall… it’s powerful every single leaf every single time.

I was talking with a member of my team, and she relayed a story that went something like this

“If it causes suffering then you know it’s time to let it go.”

This little precious deep wisdom struck me like lightning. The trees know how to hold nurture plant seeds and let go. Each year and throughout the seasons even evergreens shed and release, through spring to winter invitations, then go to seeds that nourish and burst with new life.

Every season\ each storm \ The wind and its gestures over and around the planet these encounters with air; our blessings.

Are we a part of the blessing? Do we include the rain, wind, lightning as weather patterns we appreciate? Extending our thanks, gratitude and protections, acknowledging the blessing of weather patterns that do not include us in their plans.

I remember after living away from the tropics for more than half of my life and returning for a visit, a storm became greater and greater and poured itself onto the land a delicious warm deluge. It was luxury. I waited in astonishment with my face turned up to a growling Sky festooned with arrows of wild light embracing the land in a deep ecstatic energetic gale of pleasure.

We need this relief today. Can we take pleasure in the rain? How it sounds…. tapping, touching and tasting everything?

Whatever is in the water is everywhere. I always wonder how the wind will deliver this regal and sparkling gift – as a soft air filled with moisture, or a padding pelt that can move humans and stone, land and animal masses with what seems for the gods of air one simple exhalation. That’s what we need going forward, a celebration, exclamation, and appreciation of everything that we must weather that smooths and forms us.

Several years ago when I was doing the opening and commencement ceremonies at Bastyr University – at the beginning we would give the student a rough and rugged stone. While at the commencement years later a smooth and weathered stone was placed in their open hand, this tradition was known and people waited and weathered those years to collect that smooth River stone that reminded them of a refinement that only real life can bring.

I enjoyed my time there making these ceremonies for the incoming and outgoing students. The new beginnings that are at the threshold of every choice and always indicated by what is closing and opening at the same time.

The Sky opens and we are cleansed.

The Sky clears and we’re warmed.

The clouds cover the sun, we are sheltered.

Wind cleanses, warms and shelters too. I believe we don’t want to be cleansed or let go. I notice how we have been conditioned to think we can have and hold on to everything we have collected over a lifetime, whether short or long.

The smoke causes us to be inside – at least those of us who are close to the wildfires. We also have the pandemic which is causing us to not connect with one another in the ways that pack animals like to do. I feel like the smoke is sending us the same communication we have been sending the earth, water, elements and all of the creatures here. We have not respected their environment and space to the point where there is no place to be, no place for them to flourish, find belonging or renewal. We want to keep everything and then we want more.

How do we attend to what is needed for all beings? Perhaps we could write a list of what’s needed – choose one thing and then find as many creative solutions as possible. Start a movement like the rain to cleanse and nourish and bring goodness to the world.

The true thing about wind and rain is it cleanses the oxygen in and over our bodies and the land. It is an accomplice to the precious and necessary airstreams that lift our birds and shake the seeds out of a myriad of trees that scatter giving new life to our lungs and to the land and who only need a little bit of encouragement and a little bit of rain.

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