“The holiest words I’ve ever read or thought or sung or prayed, were praises, praises for the world. And if I die tomorrow may the last words that I know, be praises, praises for the world” Jennifer Berezan
Of course, in a humancentric society, there is a huge lack of knowledge about the natural world, and the human/nature separation is painfully extreme, leading to callous attitudes and misguided fears. “We cannot win the battle to save species and environments without forging an emotional bond between ourselves and nature - for we will not fight to save what we do not love.” (Stephen Jay Gould) Educating ourselves on the landforms, plants, trees, creatures and seasonal patterns in our local ecosystem is a life-long undertaking, and in the meantime, there is so much to love in the natural world.
Graceful horizon lines, stalwart trees, soft breezes shaking the seed pods, animal tracks, sinewy snake tracings, endless variations in leaf and stone, patterns in sprout and decay, feathered shade and bird song all speak to the senses, and we can hear the charm and delight of the creatures endlessly calling their names. Are we listening? What are they telling us? When we hear the voices of Earth Community, we become transfixed by the many distinct expressions of beauty, spirit and practicality, and we also learn that Mother Earth is suffering from our disregard and disrespect. If we hold the ethics of care for all life, the best way to restore balance and peace with the Earth is to feel her, know her, listen to her, be open to her gifts, and ultimately, to love Her. Entering the “timeless time” of ancestral mind is an excellent way to bond with nature, revere nature, and with love, express the earth-honoring ceremonies that align us with The Sacred that dwells in ourselves, all beings and the natural world.
A wonderful practice to adopt is “Earth Blessing” - the recognition that spirit flows through the land, the elements and all beings, that our entire Earth Community is sacred, and that each moment is a gift of vitality and joy. The essence of love is found everywhere in nature, and love is the ultimate vibratory field for the plant kingdom, the kinship of the creatures, the nurturing power of the feminine, and elements such as the water. Blessing and being blessed, expressing our wonder and gratitude for nature and the regenerative life force with song, chant, drumming, prayer and reflection, creates an atmosphere of celebration and love between us and the non-human world. By evoking the spiritual realms, and acknowledging the sacred in ourselves and the land, we are expressing a powerful force of unconditional love that empowers all of our connections in Earth Community.
Loving the Earth with a fierce devotion may mean that we view the damage being done to nature as attacks on our own family and kinship group. The despair and rage we feel as witnesses to terracide, animal exploitation and the everyday callous disregard for the land can be channelled into creating awareness, resistance efforts, the earth rights movement, and by rejecting the numbing and destructive values of Empire. “Fighting for our survival in the 21st century is less about defeating the aggression of an external enemy than it is about finding new ways to love the land.” (Taiaiake Alfred) By opening our hearts to the Earth in our thoughts, words, actions and cultural life we find sacred purpose in the co-creation of an earth-honoring society, and restore much-needed balance. Our re-enchantment with the natural world is essential for devoting ourselves to eco-activism, environmental healing, earth restoration and rewilding, and the future rests with us!
Who is my first and ever beloved.
Whose smiles and rages and storms and weepings
And tremblings and lashings and eruptions
And ripenings and witherings and musings
Are my life, my terror,
My thought, my wild joy
And all of beauty I ever want to know.
Who takes me into her after every journeying,
Who is my source, my end, and my obsession.
Paula Gunn Allen
Reclaiming Your Roots & Restoring Earth Community by Pegi Eyers
 Drew Dellinger, “Study Guide,” Occupy Love: Revolution of the Heart, Dir. Velcrow Ripper, Fierce Love Films, 2013 www.occupylove.org
 Jennifer Berezan, Praises for the World Song and Chant, SOCAN/ASCAP, Edge of Wonder Records, 2002 www.edgeofwonder.com
 Francis Weller, “Five Gates of Grief,” Robert Bly’s Minnesota Men’s Conference, November 4, 2013
 Stephen Jay Gould, Eight Little Piggies: Reflections in Natural History, W. W. Norton & Company, 2010
 David Suzuki, The Sacred Balance: Rediscovering Our Place in Nature, Greystone Books, 2007
 Taiaiake Alfred, “Opening Words,” Lighting the Eighth Fire: The Liberation, Resurgence and Protection of Indigenous Nations, Leanne Simpson (editor), Arbeiter Ring Publishing, 2008
Pegi Eyers is the author of "Ancient Spirit Rising: Reclaiming Your Roots & Restoring Earth Community," an award-winning book that explores strategies for intercultural competency, healing our relationships with Turtle Island First Nations, uncolonization, recovering an ecocentric worldview, rewilding, creating a sustainable future and reclaiming peaceful co-existence in Earth Community.
Stone Circle Press