Notes on a Buddhist path

Wild things…you make my heart sing

September 6, 2011 By | Leave a Comment

I met my friend Rachelle for tea on this Labour Day. With passion and verve she told me about her experience in David Abram‘s recent program at Hollyhock. Abram is a holder of stories and magic and the urgent message for all of us to connect with nature in ways that are new and yet ancient. To see the cars that roll past us as insects and the plane overhead as a creature is to resync ourselves into the groove of the planet. To experience, as Abram says, “the land as a boisterous community of beings in which we are participants.”

We are all wild things if we can get to the core of our essence. Wild in the sense of unknowing. To see a bird or a building or your ex-partner for its beauty and majesty without naming it or judging it opens up a spectrum of possibilities to ignite our awe of this space, this moment, this life we are a part of. To live in the unknown is to dive off a cliff with gleeful acceptance of the landing, whatever that looks like. A tree doesn’t contemplate moving to a better part of the forest or wonder what it would look like if only it were taller. To be in time with nature is to be solely present, soulfully alive and wholly awake to the incredible gifts our wildness can unlock inside each of us.  The Troggs got it right back in the 60’s. Wild thing… you make everything…


The Peace of Wild Things

When  despair for the world grows in me

and I wake in the night at the least sound

in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be

I go and lie down where the wood drake

rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.

I come into the peace of wild things

who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief.

I come into the presence of still water.

And I feel above me the day – blind stars waiting with their light. For the time

I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

Wendell Berry

David Abram, “Becoming Animal: an Earthly Cosmology”. Copyright 2010. Published by Pantheon.

Wendell Berry, “The Peace of Wild Things” from The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry. Copyright © 1998. Published by Counterpoint Press.

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