(Si Wa Wata Wi – A Zuni Elder)

When the Body is Whole we Live as Earth

The anonymous intention that has a hold of America is rapidly becoming clear. Loot the place, trash it, and get out of here – to Mars, probably. This seemingly utterly fantastic imagination can begin to happen in earnest within a few years!

If we feel totally repelled by the prospects, and that is a big ‘if’, for it may already be too late, spiritual-earth awakening seems crucial. It is not a matter of returning to the spiritual–earth, it is a matter of co-creating the always-intended future unfolding of this Beloved Being. 

Accompanying such awakening, and further ways of coming awake will be suggested later. Those suggestions bear no weight, however, without entering Spiritual Poverty (St. Francis) and Vulnerability.

Here is my story of falling. Maybe others will share stories:

The Necessity of Falling into Mystery 

The Zuni reservation experience

I visited the Zuni reservation, three hours Northwest of Albuquerque recently. When I drove into the village, I was appalled – a large ‘village’ of about 12,000 people – it is the largest of the Pueblos. The whole village consists of very modest, extremely modest houses, many of them, perhaps most of them, in need of a lot of repairs. There is no ‘center’ to the village. Upon entering, the village strikes one who lives within the consciousness of our civilization as a place of extreme poverty, and anger arises toward the government for the manner in which Indigenous people have been treated.

I went to a B&B. That night —-

A Dream:

“I am teaching a seminar/workshop. No sense in the dream of who is there – other than an attractive elderly lady. At one point in the workshop, I said something – not clear what – that disturbed the whole group. A clamor arose, so loud that we took a break to settle down.

The elderly lady and I take a walk and are talking about what happened; I was trying to understand what made people so upset. The lady seemed to be trying to also understand. Between us, it came, the reason – imagination! – some sort of images had entered the group, disturbing them. It was not any particular image, but imagination itself; and when introduced, the people could no longer understand… and the chaos of being thrown out of mental-ness expressed itself in the groupas rage.

Upon waking, the most vivid memory was of the ‘lady’ – she is very familiar, but no one that I recognize — tall, thin, grey hair, very active and very animated and completely engaged in the workshop.

This dream came while I was at the B&B at the Zuni reservation.

Upon coming more awake, I was feeling a disappointment with the place, Zuni, NM. The reservation seemed to be just a very, very poor town – no center, the houses are completely ‘American”, and are very poor, very run down, repaired with patching, in the dirt, no yards. The place felt like a whole village of very poor people.

But, upon waking, a very different sense came. My imagination ‘woke up here’. I suddenly “know” imagination.

Early in the morning, after spending the night at the B&B, at 6 a.m. – dressed and went for a walk. It had rained last night (It had also rained at home, Albuquerque, before I left to go to Zuni – just as I finished building the Medicine Wheel in the backyard.) Ah, renewal!

As I walked out onto the street, I saw two Native American men – walking, on the other side of the street, slightly behind me. They were somewhat disheveled, as if they had, maybe, been out all night. (A mental interpretation.) Felt a bit of fear, but also did not know how to talk with them, so I stayed on my side of the street. They got closer, but everything was fine. I was walking in the street and went to step up the curb onto the sidewalk. I slipped and I fell, hard. I laid there holding my arm, examining my elbow, feeling it may have broken. One of the men rushed over and gently helped me get up, and kept asking if I was alright. Then, he looked at me and said: “Old”. I said, “Yes, old age.” He said, “Still walkable.” He did so being fully here.

It was like my spirit speaking with me.

At that very moment, sensing and perception itself changed. I literally saw that this place was not poor at all. I was seeing it before only through my own ‘civilized’ eyes, a kind of comparison with the world I am from. This place, Zuni, is a community – with everything that entails – it is Whole. It is not an ideal place, but a real spiritual-earth place. Community is sensory, visible, tangible, not some abstract idea. It lives in and as the place itself.

I realized at that moment that Humility and Vulnerability are the primary pre-requisites for Elder-consciousness, and probably the reason we think of Elders as ‘old’ people. One does not have to be old, though, to enter elderhood; the primary requisite is humility and vulnerability as quite natural, like Earth Herself.

An aside: Before I left the village, I bought two Zuni fetishes from different folks who came up to me. One is a fetish ‘shrew’ – very unusual, have never seen before. He said it was an Underworld being, an animal that lives underground – he said, it helps things to grow. The other – a most unusual “corn Mother”; with a basket of corn in front of her and specks of turquoise – both the perfect image of the ‘real’, that is, imaginal, experience of this village. I knew that nothing that happens in that village is accidental.


Next Blog – All Earth Lives Eternally as Rhythm