Spiritual Ecology and Deep Ecology: “I am Part of the Rainforest Protecting Myself”

A meditation by Tass Two Crows Flying of Right-relation.org, July 2022

These times require much deep thought of how we are to move forward to heal the separation we feel and grow strong. We don’t always have to reach into prehistory or to our recent Ancestors to reconnect. There are some teachers that are accessing the collective consciousness of this in a new manner.

Arno Naess

27 Jan 1912 – 12 Jan 2009

Deep Ecology is a philosophy of nature, which sees that underlying the environmental crisis there is a psychological disease stemming from the illusion of separation between humans and the rest of the natural world. The late Arne Naess, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy from Oslo University, Norway who coined the term “deep ecology” pointed out that our “ecological ideas are not enough to protect the Earth, we need ecological identity, ecological self”.

John Seed’s Spirit experience was a profound realisation. In his words the saying “I am protecting the rainforest”, becomes “I am part of the rain forest protecting myself. I am that part of the rainforest recently emerged into thinking. What a relief then, the thousands of years of perceived separation are over, and we begin to recall our true nature.”

That change is a spiritual one. Take a few breaths, close your eyes, and come with me on a brief journey.

Let me hold your hands, and lets all move towards the forest, taking careful steps, in unity we move, and we gradually file in in a long row, of footsteps gently stepping on our mother,  all of us breathing prayers, the cold air making our silent words visible. We hear bird song and enter the loamy smell of the Standing Nation leaves composting, and move deeper and deeper into the darkness of their canopy. We walk for a long while,…up ahead we see a glimmer of a fire and smell the smoke. There are many seats around this fire, and we all sit down reverently and listen.

There are faces I know that will be speaking, Joanna Macy is holding hands with John Seed, they have tears running down their faces. They speak in unison – I am the rainforest protecting myself, that part that has recently emerged into thinking. Some of us feel the relief of a thousand years of separation dropping away; we know our true nature. Another who is in the Spirit world already, Arne Naess, looks around and says – “Ecological ideas are not enough to protect the Earth, we need ecological identity, ecological self”.

A Medicine Person stands and seems to tower over all of us – and says in many tongues: “Welcome, welcome family. You all have finally woken up.” They take up their drum, and begin to play as we listen, we are taken to a world as if we have ingested Los Niños Santos.

We see the streams of energy emanating from one another, the fire, the trees, the other beings. We become aware of the sentiency of the plants, their indignation of being manipulated, their codes destroyed. Flowers who give off fragrance signals to say, we re ready to be pollinated. We hear a voice that says “Your ideas of deep ecology are standing on the shoulders of giants; you have merely forgotten your roots.

Many many years ago, back in deep time, we your ancestors lived closely to Our Mother, we understood the nature of give and take, we understood that like the bees we only take enough. The Shaman was asked to do ceremony when harvesting, they crossed over between reality and non ordinary reality, with their deep seeing, and sharing the signs of the natural world knowledge and also calling upon the guides and spirits to help the community. In the really old ways, when we your ancestors lived in small bands of people, a sense of reciprocal oneness existed. We also understood that we were not apart from any cycle.

And that our lives were as precious as the Elk or Eland whose life we took to feed our family, and that everything was used, nothing went to waste. We understand that in your time it is very different. But each of you can listen to your new teachers who live among you, who are accessing this collective consciousness in a new manner, using language and methods that make sense for those of you that are emerging out of the unnatural chrysalis of the Industrial Mind.

As a Shaman I am telling you do not forget that the Spirit world is there to assist you, call upon your Shamans who can see these things, do ceremony. What happens in non-ordinary reality changes ordinary reality. Use these powerful tools to change and shift into a world where a community of reverence exist”

The drum beats cease, and an elder stands, John Seed calls on a prayer breathed from his lips – “We call on the spirit of Gaia, awaken in us a sense of who we truly are – tiny transient blossoms on the tree of life, make the purposes and destiny of that tree, our own purpose and destiny.”

We look around us and see that each of us is a branch, some of us Shamans, some of us Medicine people, and others who give equal gifts to the world with feeding their hungry brothers and sisters, living wildly close to the planet, and energy healers, poets, singers and more.

And you see the threads of life between you, and that you are all one – each leaf of who you are is essential to change the state of our Mother, and the dignity of all our relations. We understand what the Deep Ecologists are saying and that their words and teachings are what our Shamans say too.

That all life forms have an intrinsic right to exist, and that we need to find a way in a dignified manner
The day is coming quick, and we need to leave this space, we offer tobacco and other sacred offerings to this holy space, and to the elders, we bow deeply with reverence in our hearts and we slowly leave. Moving towards daylight we are moved not to forget.

We become aware of our surroundings and give thanks to all the teachers that will share their wisdom. And so, it is… it is so.

Tass Two Crows Flying will be co-facilitating the retreat ReAwakeNing to Life with Joanna Tomkins and Rachael Millson in October. Please join to experience first and her insights into spiritual ecology.

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