So as we sit by the Samhain fire, or bask in the early sunset rays, I ask you to take a moment to reflect on our true nature.
Samhain has always been a time for reflection for looking within. It’s the time of year when the nature of our lives change when we transition into the darker half of the year and accept that death is a cyclical and necessary part of life.
But what does that mean in the word of 2019?
Today we live in a world in turmoil, facing many political struggles. One of the greatest being that of Climate change and our role in that.
This summer I was very excited to visit the Black Forrest in Germany. To get back to nature, to get close to the trees, the mountains and to swim in the clear blue lakes.
But something that I noticed is how much of that beautiful “natural” landscape was cut by signs of humanity. Roads criss-crossing, the clearing of logs to build tourist centres and farmland. I lost count of the number of logging trucks which passed us on the highway.
While researching the history of the forest, I was saddened to learn that its endless sea of fragrant pine, is not in fact natural. This was planted to replace the forest which once stood here and was cut down by man.
I was struck by other tourists lack of interest in this reality. By their blindness to the falshood of the small mountain towns and tourist traps. Stopping to picnic at a viewpoint where clearly trees had been felled, to offer us an undisturbed view across the valley.
Although I very much enjoyed my visit to this corner of the world and was able to enjoy what little “nature” there truly was, my heart ached a bit. My soul was crying for the damage done by my own species.
I felt like that dear in the headlights, a sad guardian of the forest. I wanted to mourn every fallen tree, each bird that was no longer. I could feel this creature creeping out from within me wanting to protect this precious place we call home – earth.
The sadness at times overtook my appreciation for what surrounded me and my soul couldn’t bear it. The horns in these photos may be false, but they felt real, like a crown, bestowing upon me the right and the will to put a stop to the madness.
I am by no means, the worlds greatest eco warrior, but I could never forgive myself, if I witnessed this devastation and blindly walked passed.
This Samhain I take moment to appreciate that as much as death is a part of life, we can put a stop to the mindless consumption that generates our tolerance of killing the world around us (not to mention our own brain cells). This Samhain, the ancestors’ that I honour are the trees, the insects, the birds, the fish, the once native bears, beavers and wolves who are no longer with us, because we thought that we had the right to make that so.
Happy Samhain everyone, enjoy the festivities but spare a thought for our planet at your silent dinner, during your trick-or-treats, ceremonies and costume parties. I promise you, the earth will thank you. Perhaps not in your life time, but hey – that’s life.