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Waking up our ecological

Ratnadevi and Sukhema came to the woods the day before, so I had a taste of them. They both took me straight back to India to the souls I met there then, and although I feel a different Rachel now, I felt taken back to then. Their alive eyes, their engagement, curiosity, unshakable quality. Enough, let me do the detail.

Andrew and Alice invited us to this workshop – same weekend as Weird and Wonderful, and many other local fascinations, but I would not have swapped for the world.

What luxury I wrote later, what luxury to have this time for reflection, to be invited to stop, to be listened to with such care, to find such words and ideas inside.

About 20 of us gathered at the Harmony centre. Working as a joined double act, they invited us into the space. They invited in not just us but all who came with us, our ancestors, all who have gone before. They invited us to this harmony space, acknowledging it’s history which is today part of our lives (David Gillett who and Jacqui Beacon). The wonder of dead time.

We wrote down what we needed.
– Confidentiality
-Openness and Trust
– Listening – non judgemental, holding uncertainty

We said why we were here. Because sometimes I feel overwhelmed, anxious with all happening around outside of me.

Alice, who has just lost her mother, declared as such, her eyes deep, profound, watery, saying she welcomed hugs, at which point Andrew came up to her to hug her from behind so that she looked out as he circled her. Touching and beautiful.

We were invited to find out 3 stories.

Sukhema gave us his story. He grew up 10 miles outside of a city, among orchards of apples, peaches, cherries, a little paradise, call Santa xx. 10 years later, he was 10 miles in the city, called Silicon Valley. The stream he swam in as a child was built over.

Business as usual The Great Unravelling The Great Turning

Mingling around the room, stopping when the gong went, we spoke to a stranger, whose name we may or may not remember, and exchanged on each item, with our own story

Business as usual, my stranger, Andy, told of how he went shopping at Sainsbury’s by default. I found a story of how I ignored investigating the storage euphemistically called cloud and continued to store photographs, occasionally feeling overwhelmed with the quantity of them.

The Great unravelling and Turning, i have already forgotten!

When Alice spoke of the search engine Eco, powered by solar, and planter of trees, i noticed my reaction. Solar = battery = storage=problems.

Argentina, Bolivia and Chile make up the “lithium triangle.” The three countries, along with Peru, contain about 67% of proven lithium reserves and produce about half of the global supply, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Smartphones, computers and electric vehicles may be emblems of the modern world, but, says Siddharth Kara, their rechargeable batteries are frequently powered by cobalt mined by workers laboring in slave-like conditions in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Action Study story – of how she got together a group of friends to study Nuclear Waste.

Gratitude for another:
humus and garlic reminder of someone else’s love in my stomach
For this time in my life feeling the most connected, embedded in a community, post Pits campaign and Green elections, in a wood, planting a future, among a modest community, ie not conflict resolution in the UN
I’ve been a restless searcher moving on, a voyeur, absorbed into another’s life or moving on again. I feel rich in teasle hocks finding connections, some surprising that appear to have grown along the way. Today remembering first encountering the story of WBO and Sangharakshita, encountered first in the Pole Pole restaurant Budhgaya.
– For this time of reflection, what a luxury. To stop, look out and in, encounter, listneing, share
– Gratitude for the rain, this time of planting, nourishing the whips their roots settling in the particles of the earth, absorbing moisture
– Dogs who remind me to look away from the computer screen, to teach me
– India for challenging my view
– My mother who have birth to me, a feet I have not managed myself, gratitude to have known her and feel her this day Alice misses her mother
– Charlie for knowing him
– Gratitude for all that i have lost and found.

Something comes towards you. Your gratitude contains your need. (A need of time for reflection, a dog, rain etc)

Advertisting challenges this concept of gratitude, telling us we don’t have enough. Puts a spanner in the works of enoughness. What need of mine is being met?

Exercise 3 turns
– Something you feel passionate about
The example from one of us was Incomers from London coming to create homes in Walberswick
– The other side of the argument – I am the incomer
– From an animal view – sparrow in the hedge taken out
– 7 generations hence – there is no Walberswick

What did I feel passionate about? Today was storage of stuff. How I collect photographs, documents, emails, fearful of deleting just in case, same same it used to be for material stuff.
From the other side – Its not material, its counter stuff, a satiating of desire immaterially, music, words, photographs, no printing, no chemicals, no manufacturing. Etherial.
The animal was of course the dog: Look here, why are you always on the phone, why always taking photographs and not throwing ball? Why not play, be in the now.
7 generations hence” storage on another solar system?

Sunday

We bought with us an object that represented loss and where we were

Amanda started the circle, perfectly, with an oak sapling she had grown from an acorn last year (I had failed hundreds of times with this!) S, linking to this spoke of the sapling he planted for his friend who died in his arms.
Tarmac – for worlds that build and build to get somewhere else
Dragon Flies – the death of insects

I bought in a foot of a baby camel, I found in the Sahara near to Timbuktoo.
It represented the first feel I had of climate change in this world, when every morning women brushed the sand away from their front doors. The Sahara was encroaching and growing.
It represented that journey that I will not do again and all journeys that I will do not to again, or in fact do. I will not return to the Sahara, to Dogon land (which I left saying I will be back), to India probably. Why? No need, no longer searching, out of reach. The death of possibilities: of being an artist, piano player, climber

Alice’s letter was beautiful. She starts with Dear Alice, my name sake II heard you used to blow Dandilion seeds. My grandmother talked of these flower heads once,

Recognise – there is suffering
Allow – honouring the same
Investigation – What needs are not met eg beauty
Nourish – that need
Imagine – the power of imagination to explore and imagine eg beauty
Go fort – what one thing can you do from this workshop

I had lunch with Ratna Devi on the bench over looking the pond. She is 67 today. We are born in the same year.

What a glorious weekend, amid the perfect burgeoning spring green suffolk landscape, in this centre born and created out of love. Gratitude to Andrew for getting this moment together.

Now how to move forward, not wasted but informed? Yuka came over that evening, and so I could chew the cud on some of the ideas. The greatness of gratitude stays with me. I will share with Charlie.

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