A Planet in Crisis
I know I am not alone in believing that our planet is stuck between paradigms. The old one doesn’t work and we have not found a new one. The very future of homo sapiens is at stake yet recent world events indicate we are regressing rather than progressing. Recently I read Carlo Rovelli’s Seven Brief lessons in Physics. he has a clear opinion on the future of the human race, “We belong to short-lived genus of species. All of our cousins are already extinct. What’s more, we do damage.” Can we survive? I still live in hope and recently had a dream that inspired me.
A Dream in Three Acts.
Act 1 takes place in a forest. I am part of a dissident group that is being pursued by government troops. They are firing at us. I do not feel scared but fascinated to the lengths the authorities are going to attack us. Then they bring up a tank. This seems way over the top but before I can flee the troops mutiny and begin attacking each other.
Act 2 we have escaped to a conference where the mood of the group has turned ugly – resentful, aggressive and unbalanced. I am concerned about what may happen and text a woman I know who possesses some kind of authority. She replies immediately that she wants to meet. I find her in a small, somewhat Mexican looking town. Her name is Eva and she says she wants to address the group. I am sure this is a good idea and take her to the event. She is petite, dark haired with incredible presence.
Act 3 something amazing happens as she arrives at the venue. She seems to connect positively with everyone she meets, embracing them and uplifting them. The news of her arrival ripples through the gathering. Meanwhile I try and locate the organizer whose name is Ian. Eventually I find him in a room where they are setting up the final session. He seems disinterested in what I have to say but I beg to talk to him. Finally I begin telling him what has transpired but before I finish I notice Eva has arrived beside him. He immediately hands her the microphone but she wants to use the small lapel microphone that has somehow got tangled in my left foot. I have no shoes on. As she begins to speak I feel myself fading into the background. My work is done. I wake up feeling a little frustrated I heard nothing of her message.
Resolving Problems at Another Level
When I considered my personal environment in which this dream occurred, I had another insight. I have been wresting with the state of the world and the future challenges that face homo sapiens (see https://wp.me/phAyS-Eh). This dream seemed related to those concerns
My feelings in the dream moved from curiosity to apprehension, from concern to action, concluding with a sense of satisfaction at having played my role. However I am left with a lingering question about what my role is?
Albert Einstein once said, “We can not solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them” It seems to me we keep trying to fix things at the level on which they occur and perhaps the dream is about new solutions. Changing leaders and ideologies, engaging in opposite solutions creates even greater friction and misunderstandings.
Suddenly the first act of the dream makes sense, our society is at war with itself. The dream symbolizes what is all to real in our society at the moment. There seems to more and more polarization.
Following this thread the second act suggests that as we attempt to fix things at the same level with the same tools, the energy of those attempting to force changes on societies, can turn ugly – protests, violence, revolution, loss of respect and even abandonment of proper principles, all lead to chaos. The imposed solution creates even more resistance and power shifts back to the competing side.
In the third act Eva represents another way. The name is interesting in itself. My unconscious selected a version of the name Eve that means life or the living one. She carries all the aspects of what I sometimes refer to as the divine feminine – compassion, caring, equanimity, love, empathy, passion and enthusiasm. This archetype carries great power. Yet she is also dynamic. My sense of the dream is that it offers the idea that change must occur through the dynamic feminine.
But what does that mean both individually and collectively. Unfortunately I don’t hear her speak. My role was to introduce her. What could that look like in my life? I need to begin by holding the energy and hope for change and seek the guidance for how I can contribute to encouraging a shift.
What Can I Do?
A journey of a thousand miles starts with but a single step. I began a meditation this Summer where I stand beside an ancient tree. I tap into the living energy that has witnessed the transformations of the past 500 years and has seen our progress and our backsliding. I reflect on the positive changes I have seen in my lifetime: human rights, gender rights, the right to be gay and lesbian, transfer of power in South Africa, peace in Northern Ireland, the end of segregation in the USA. I affirm a prayer: “I am a radiating beacon of love and hope, show me the way.”
NB After writing these words I went to the gym for a workout. I always listen to a blog and today it was by eclectic author and anthropologist Wade Davis. (https://www.cbc.ca/radio/ideas/wade-davis-light-at-the-edge-of-the-world-1.4499962) He offers a vision for hope based on his observations as an anthropologist and offered a wonderful quote from his father: “As my father would say, ‘what side do you want to be on? Do you want to put your shoulder to the wheel of justice, or do you want to be part of the problem?”