Awe II

This is from Stephen Harrod Buhner’s The Secret Teachings of Plants in the Direct Perception of Nature, pp.148-151.  I’ve made a few small modifications to establish context and maintain continuity…

“Using direct perception to learn the medicinal powers of plants is not a spectator sport.  Eventually you have to move from looking and go into feeling, realizing that feeling is a sense, too.  Not the touch of the fingers, but the touch of the heart.  This kind of touch has another dimension, deeper than that possessed by the fingers.

and as we touch, so are we touched

“Everything has a hidden face.  Hidden, not in the sense that it is intentionally concealed, but in that it can only be seen with different eyes than the physical.  A different mode of perception must be used.  The hidden face of Nature can only be seen with the heart.

“Sit with a plant, focus on its sensory attributes, and begin to

”    s l o w    d o w n    n o w

“Become aware of the feelings that arise in you as you sit by the plant.  How do you feel?  Now you are learning to see – not merely the physical form of things, but the meanings that each thing expresses.

“Everything we encounter in the wildness of the world gives off its own electromagnetic pulse of communication.  These waveforms are filled with meanings, living communications that touch us and that we experience as feelings.”

“Because we have been taught for so long to disregard these kinds of feelings, it may be hard to let yourself notice them.  Begin by allowing yourself to describe these plant-generated feelings in any way they come to you.  Take the step of letting them come into consciousness and emerge into words.  Do not control the words or make them big and analytical.  Let them emerge of themselves, in their own form.  Give yourself permission to say out loud what they are, no matter how foolish they might seem to your linear mind.

It is a rare qualification to be able to conceive and suffer the truth to pass through us living and intact.    –Thoreau

“Because of our long habituation in the linear mind and the things we have been taught about the livingness[or absence thereof] of the world, this is the hardest thing of all – to give reality to the feelings that flow into us from the world itself.”

“Giving reality to the feelings that come to us from the world directly contradicts the Western insistence on the linear mind and the (presumed) unreality of the living soulfulness of the world around us.  Doing so breaks a cultural agreement that is powerful and strong and deeply embedded within us.”

“Embracing the reality of the feelings that come to us from the world is the first step in the decolonization of the soul.  In this moment, the linear mind is truly left behind.  This is the moment you begin to use a different mode of cognition – the moment you begin to think with your heart.”

“Most of us have been taught that feelings only come from within us.  For those of us who wish to learn directly from the wildness of the world, to learn directly from plants the medicinal uses they possess, it is essential to begin to feel with the heart.  To do so you must go to meet the plant with your most vulnerable self.  You must open your heart and let the plant’s living communication flow into you, weave through you.  You must receive what it has to offer.”

“Because it is out of your conscious awareness, you must notice everything that your body does during this process, everything you feel, every stray thought that comes into your head, no matter how insignificant, unrelated, or ridiculous it seems.  You are learning a new language now.”

Fresh Violets in an ancient pottery bowl.  Reanimating the Planet and its denizens is one of the first steps in making ourselves a Sustainable Home here.

One Response to “Awe II”

  1. lynnann50 Says:

    You always know just the right thing (for me) to say! I have violets steeping in water in the sunshine to use in a syrup for my scratchy (Tamarack pollen) throat. love

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