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It is surely winter now at Kosmos, the deep pause between the dying of the old and the emergence of the new. Natural cycles often have a dark phase, when the life force burns low. The world we were so sure of, is no longer. And what is coming, has yet to appear. It is natural to have dark feelings – anxiety, even hopelessness in these times of seasonal and global uncertainty, the formless phase of transformation.
Nowhere is our collective dark side – Jung’s “shadow self”- more evident than in the methods of self-annihilation humans have devised, particularly nuclear weapons. It would be a very dark irony to begin reversing climate chaos only to confront global chaos in this other form. Please read the open letter from the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.
Also in this edition of Kosmos Online we explore the emotional world of darkness through the transformative power of ancient songs and tales. Our ancestors teach us that old forms no longer serving a creative purpose die out, liberating new energies, for new uses and new stories to come.
We retreat in winter so that we may rest, heal and prepare for this renewal. We can set our burdens down. As Margaret Wheatley says, the burden of change is not ours alone to bear, ‘we’re not Sisyphus, condemned to a fate of absurd heroism.’ And like the binding vine in Megan Hollingsworth poem, Leli, we can find comfort in the depths of darkness, even as we cling against all odds to survival and the light.
Facing our darkness is something only each of us can do. We begin by stopping…the projecting, consuming, planning, judging, and the insisting on answers. Then we might listen…to our hearts, and also to the tales told by a winter fire that serve as reminders; we are intertwined with one another in ancient cycles and stories far greater than what we know. None of us is alone.
Love and Light,
Your Kosmos Team
Note: For over a year now, Dear Reader, it has been my privilege to share these letters and articles with you. It’s wonderful when you write back. Please share your responses, queries, and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Gratefully, Rhonda Fabian, Digital Editor, Kosmos Online
by Richard Falk, David Krieger and Robert Laney, via Nuclear Age Peace Foundation
“We in the United States are in the midst of hotly contested campaigns to determine the candidates of both major political parties in the 2016 presidential faceoff, and yet none of the frontrunners for the nominations have even voiced concern about the nuclear war dangers we face. This is an appalling oversight. It reflects the underlying situation of denial and complacency that disconnects the American people as a whole from the risks of use of nuclear weapons in the years ahead.”
Image | Obatala Santeria, Wendell Wiggins
In the current edition of Kosmos Journal
By Bayo Akomolafe
Let me tell you a story about how the world began. I promise you the story is not completely untrue.
Yoruba elders say that when the world began, there was only sky and water. The Supreme Being, Olórun, ruled the firmaments, while the Divine Feminine, Olokun, was master of the raging seas. One day, Obatala, a son of Olórun, grew restless and sought to create a world between primal sea and silent sky…
By Robert Macfarlane, via The Age of Transition blog
(Images: David Hannah/Getty; Marnie Burkhart/plainpicture)
For good or ill, we are remaking Earth. What new words, both light and dark, will be needed to describe the planet in the the age of humans?
By Margaret Wheatley, via Awakin.org
“I hear so many people who want to take at least partial responsibility for this mess. Somewhat piously, as if summoning us to accountability, they say, “We need to accept responsibility that we created this” or “We created it, so we can change it.” No we didn’t. And no we can’t. We participated with innumerable other players and causes and this is what emerged. We can’t take credit for it, we can’t blame ourselves and we can’t put the burden of change on us. We’re not Sisyphus, condemned to a fate of absurd heroism.”
Megan Hollingsworth premieres her poem, Leli, in Kosmos Online.
Megan shares that, convolvulus arvensis or field bindweed is called leli in Punjabi. “Each seed, like each soul, has its own intuition and learns itself, as if waking, in the dark where roots persist effortlessly. So too, the binding vine in ‘Leli’ is only this binding that the seed may fulfill a devotion to light’s flowering.”
She has paired her poem with an essay, ‘Clinging to Certainties, Belonging to Joy
re: Near Term Human Extinction’.
By Peter Straton Bejger, for Kosmos Online
“…before the gathered family and guests can begin the meal the household animals must be fed first. Legend holds that they can speak at midnight and complain to the Almighty if they are ignored. The head of the household must appease as well other forces and attempt to diminish rural terrors. Sorcerers, thunder, lightning, and hail in addition to wolves, bears, and foxes are invited to the meal. They are called down three times and if they decline to appear, they are banished for the year. “
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