Ecological Psychology

Here’s a rather long piece from the New York Times Magazine titled “Is There an Ecological Unconscious?” It deals with “the notion that evolution endowed humans with a craving for nature.” Apparently this concept is somewhat controversial among professional psychologists. It seems obvious to Pagans, and to most people who spend any time in the natural world.

The article presents a related issue, “a fundamental problem of ecopsychology: even if we can establish that as we move further into an urban, technological future, we move further away from the elemental forces that shaped our minds, how do we get back in touch with them?”

At our Fall Equinox Circle last September, the Denton CUUPS group presented this Litany of Reconnection as part of our ritual. It won’t solve all our problems, but it’s a good start.

A Litany of Reconnection

We were not placed on the Earth – we grew out of the Earth.

We do not hold dominion over Creation – we live in a network of mutual interdependence.

The magic of technology does wonders and has made our lives easier and more secure, but it has also caused us to grow isolated.

We are isolated from our fellow humans, from our brothers and sisters the animals, from our father the Sun and our mother the Earth.

Where once we saw beauty and life, now we see only resources to be exploited.

Farms and fields, forests and meadows have been cut down and paved over. What was once a land full of vibrant greens and brilliant browns has become a desert of concrete and rooftops.

The people are cut off from the land, and the land is cut off from the people.

Meditate now on the ways in which your life is separated from the Source of all life.

pause for meditation

This we know. The Earth does not belong to us; we belong to the Earth. This we know. All things are connected like the blood which units one family. All things are connected. Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons and daughters of the Earth. We did not weave the web of life; we are merely a strand in it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves.

Ourselves, our nation, and our world have become separated from the Earth, and from the Source of all life. But we need not remain separated. We can forge new connections with the natural world, and with all our sisters and brothers.

Greet the Sun in the morning.

Take a walk outside.

Follow the Moon through her phases.

Stand beneath the night sky and gaze up the stars.

Give thanks.

Give to environmental causes.

Give to those who work for peace and justice.

Work for peace and justice.

Pray – speak the yearnings of your heart.

Listen – let the Goddess and God speak to you.

Meditate.

Work magic.

Every day.

Every day.

Every day.

About John Beckett

I grew up in Tennessee with the woods right outside my back door. Wandering through them gave me a sense of connection to Nature and to a certain Forest God. I’m a Druid graduate of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids, the Coordinating Officer of the Denton Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans and a former Vice President of CUUPS Continental. I’ve been writing, speaking, teaching, and leading public rituals for the past eleven years. I live in the Dallas – Fort Worth area and I earn my keep as an engineer.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06342443868855233385 Steven

    You have a nice blog.I enjoy reading many of the books and papers on building a successful practice but “Change Therapy” by David Diana is one of the most unique yet. It is a collection of articles and stories that read like Levitt’s Freakonomics or Gladwell’s Outliers. The stories are fresh, unexpected and thought provoking. It’s a free download so take a look for yourself or share with your community. http://www.davidpdiana.com/about-2/change-therapy-e-book-download/


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