Extracted from firstname.lastname@example.org
We did not think of the great open plains, the beautiful rolling hills, and the winding streams with tangled growth as “wild.” Only to the White man was nature a “wilderness” and only to him was the land infested by “wild” animals and “savage” people. To us it was tame. Earth was bountiful and we were surrounded with the blessings of the Great Mystery. Not until the hairy man from the east came and with brutal frenzy heaped injustices upon us and the families we loved was it “wild” for us. ~ Luther Standing Bear, Land of the Spotted Eagle
………….There is a force/an energy at large which divides and devours connection. A force indigenous people called Wetiko.
"Wetiko is an Algonquin word for a cannibalistic spirit that is driven by greed, excess, and selfish consumption (in Ojibwa it is windigo, wintiko in Powhatan). It deludes its host into believing that cannibalizing the life-force of others (others in the broad sense, including animals and other forms of Gaian life) is a logical and morally upright way to live." Kosmos Journal*
Wetiko is resonant with how Mara is sometimes understood in the Buddhist Suttas. Mara deludes and feeds off ignorance, hatred, and confusion. It's the malevolent and undermining energies we see roaming the lands, creating havoc. But it is also feeling of despondency, upset, and turbulence we feel. While we see and feel wetiko, it's actually hard to really get a handle on it, wake up to it, especially when we are caught in its tentacles………..
These days, we are consumed with our climate crisis. It's colossal, overwhelming, terrifying, and so very profoundly impactful. Time, running like sand through an hour glass, is counting down. We are in a challenge so great, a revolution so profound, that everything has to be re-examined, overturned, and reconfigured, at quantum speed.
But in the process, we must allow ourselves to deeply enter the excruciation of challenge. Why? Because as we rush to solutions, so often we place as primary our human centric, colonizing and dominant demand of nature. The very premise we come from, even with vital, urgent, necessary solutions, still misses the mark, still carries the wetiko virus of "us" bending "it" - that is mother nature, grandmother earth - to our will, in the process replicating the source of the problem in the first place.
In meditation we enter an inner process of letting go. In shamanic traditions, we allow ourselves to be dismembered. At the heart of authentic religious practice, we surrender. We listen again, and again, and again until we hear ourselves as within the web of life that is conscious, intelligent, and as connected to all within a world that is ensouled. When we hear that, we will know how to move.** We will be following the footsteps of our indigenous ancestors, the exact Elder wisdom needed right now.
*Seeing Wetiko: On Capitalism, Mind, Viruses, and Antidotes for a World in Transition **Indigenous Knowledge Has Been Warning Us About Climate Change for Centuries. Re climate breakdown, and what we are missing.
See also Paul Levy, The Greatest Epidemic Sickness Known to Humanity (2011) on realitysandwich.com