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In the last edition of Kosmos Online, we spoke about the need for collective healing from historical trauma. Lasting peace may not be possible until we acknowledge and process the pain of past harms, whether in families, communities or societies. The same is true of our most fundamental connection – our relationship with the Earth.
In this edition of Kosmos Online we are so fortunate to have the words of esteemed Earth teachers to help guide us. Sufi mystic and leading voice in the emerging field of spiritual ecology, Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee has shared a new essay with Kosmos, The Loss of the Sacred and a Prayer for the Earth. Also, Atria Books has been very kind to share a chapter from Mark Nepo’s new book: The One Life We’re Given. Mr. Nepo is a poet, philosopher and author of New York Times #1 bestseller, The Book of Awakening. Here, he writes about the experience of being awake to the energy of Life all around us.
Recently, I had the honor to visit with Sister Miriam MacGillis and learn about her committed work at Genesis Farm where she practices conservation as well as consecration of the land and water. When we consecrate a place, we heal a part of the Earth and the Earth heals a part of us too. Sister Miriam spoke of our collective need to ‘resacralize’ the land. The land needs us to make it sacred again. This is our covenant with nature that we have neglected to our own great impoverishment.
Nature reflects the laws of creation and the revelations that often arise in nature connect us to the very seed of that creation. When we awaken to the wonder of creation we can’t help but experience love for the Earth and all Life. Most of us would do anything we can to save that which we love. When love for the Earth and all of Life pervades humanity, we will find the capacity to restore the great gifts we have been given.
Also included, two of our most popular Kosmos Journal articles and a section on Ethical Ecology from Pope Francis’ historic encyclical, On Care for Our Common Home. May all these voices inspire us to attend more closely to the call of the Earth, to change our personal habits that do her great harm, to awaken to the nuances and joys of nature, and join our efforts with others to restore paradise here and now.
In partnership with the Earth,
Please direct your comments and queries to firstname.lastname@example.org
By Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee
for Kosmos Online
“The very nature of existence, of life and all of creation is sacred. And yet our lack of awareness, our culture’s lack of relating to creation as sacred, covers its light. It becomes more and more like a dream lost before waking. As we forget, so the light of the sacred is dimmed, becomes less and less accessible. And with this darkening, an essential quality of life also fades away.”
By Mark Nepo, from his new book:
THE ONE LIFE WE’RE GIVEN
FINDING THE WISDOM THAT WAITS IN YOUR HEART
Atria Books, 2016
A Kosmos featured book for the Sacred Season
During the summer, I was staying in a lodge near the foot of the Rocky Mountains. Every morning I’d stroll along the path behind the lodge, watching the tufts of grass stretch to meet the dew. The sun hitting the wet grass seemed an illumination. In that crisp early light, I was reminded that everything in life has an inner quality that emanates from its center.
That emanation of life-force coming out of everything is Spirit. And the sensation of that lifeforce moving out of us into the world is the sensation of being fully alive.
A Kosmos Interview with Sister Miriam MacGillis
Kosmos: How has the concept of Earth Literacy informed and inspired the mission of Genesis Farm?
Miriam MacGillis: ‘Earth Literacy’ is a term often used by Thomas Berry. He would say that we are not literate in the language and meaning of the natural world, the planet Earth and the greater cosmos from which everything has emerged. Our literacy has been centered only on the last few thousand years of human history which has shaped our perceptions about our identity and purpose. Earth Literacy suggests a process of learning the bigger story out of which everything has come, which has only recently been enabled by the scientific instruments we created, expanding our ability to see, hear and explore aspects of the inner and outer processes of this evolving Universe.
By Pope Francis, from his Encyclical Letter, Laudato Si
ON CARE FOR OUR COMMON HOME
Educating for the Covenant Between Humanity and the Environment
An awareness of the gravity of today’s cultural and ecological crisis must be translated into new habits. Many people know that our current progress and the mere amassing of things and pleasures are not enough to give meaning and joy to the human heart, yet they feel unable to give up what the market sets before them. In those countries which should be making the greatest changes in consumer habits, young people have a new ecological sensitivity and a generous spirit, and some of them are making admirable efforts to protect the environment. At the same time, they have grown up in a milieu of extreme consumerism and affluence which makes it difficult to develop other habits. We are faced with an educational challenge.
featured image | Pati Makowska
By Charles Eisenstein
KOSMOS JOURNAL, FALL | WINTER 2013
“Our discomfort with New Age-sounding concepts like “The planet is alive” is not entirely rational, but comes in large part from a wound of betrayal, cloaked in the pervasive ideology of our culture. Is it true though? We might play with various definitions of life and come up with logical, evidence-based arguments pro and con, just as we could debate the veracity of anomalous data and unconventional theories, and never come to an agreement. So let us look at the matter through a strategic lens instead. What belief motivates effective action and real change? And what kind of action results from each belief?”
By Rhonda Fabian
KOSMOS JOURNAL FALL | WINTER 2015
It has rained steadily through the night, a gentle hushing sound in the thick tree canopy. In the morning light, crickets thrill and every leaf trembles and gleams. Soft mist gently rises as the creek gushes along its deep habitual groove in Rose Valley, a place as beautiful as it sounds: my home.
Amid such grace, one might forget the planet is in chaos. Wars rage… and the trees grow slowly. And yet, if one pays attention, the very poignancy of the Earth’s beauty is the reminder of her woundedness.
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