"THE WORLD IS WILD & ALIVE
A good first step to reclaiming your wildness is the acceptance of this truth: everything we think is “not wild” is. You are already a wild creature living in a wild world.
Not only is the earth wild, but so is the universe at large, and so are we. Even the things we think of as “man-made”—all our plastics and metals and chemicals—all originally come from the natural world. There is nothing that we have that the wild didn’t put forth. There is nothing we know that she hasn’t given us. And the giant “man-made” cities, the buildings, the cars, the streets, the factories, the trash—are all derived from her and from a very thin layer obfuscating certain parts of the planet.
Over the last few centuries, we thought science was the absolute answer to everything, and now the more we learn about physics and the universe, the more miraculous the world and our existence really seems to be.
We’ve created layers and layers of illusion in order to see and feel ourselves as in control. We dominate the wildernesses of our planet just as dominate our wild selves. But deep down, we know something natural could wipe us out in a second. We are just tiny creatures moving about on a small but beautiful blue- green planet in a limitless universe. Yes, we affect the earth, we are changing her every day, but what we’ve been doing to her is nothing compared to what she could do to us.
We are not in control.
We are in a relationship.
And that is ok.
In fact, that is a relief and an opportunity.
STRENGTHS & WEAKNESSES
We traditionally consider ourselves to be smarter than the animals, plants and minerals we share the planet with, but how can that be true when we are the only creatures throwing the whole system off-balance, possibly to the point of collapse? What if what we consider to be our strength as humans is truly our greatest weakness?
What does it mean that we use our supposed intelligence to allow ourselves to feel superior to all the non-humans on this planet? Why do we put ourselves up high and them down low? Why would we think we own any aspect of nature?
Why do we so rarely create swaths of land so wild animals can roam freely? Why do we so often do things that disrupt nature’s natural, perfect order and way of doing things? Why don’t we use our big brains to plant trees everywhere we can, to be super respectful in our use of pesticides, to elevate our relationship to ecology, to clean up the mess we’ve made?
Why are we so unwilling to trade nights in front of the TV for nights under the stars in the warm glow of a fire? Why are we reluctant to trade convenience for the longevity of our species, as well as the welfare of many others? Why are we so quick to move natural resources away from the place where we found them? Why are we unable to even imagine a life where we harness the power of technology to make it work on nature’s behalf? Why do we so rarely look up at the sky and let ourselves be amazed? Why is it so seldom that we lay on the earth, press our ear to the dirt and see what she might say?
What if the truly intelligent thing would be to honor and support all the wild things and natural spaces? What does it say about us that we are so insensitive and disruptive to all life on this planet?
When you look at it this way, plants, animals and minerals definitely appear superior, and it is our species who look foolishly, embarrassingly inferior.
NATURE KNOWS YOU ARE HERE
The Gaia Theory, which hypothesizes that our planet is comprised of organic beings and their inorganic surroundings, suggests that our earth is a living creature herself.
Let’s take that idea one step further. Let’s hypothesize that the earth is not only a living being herself, but also that she is sentient. And let us further speculate that she knows we are here: she can sense us, she can communicate with us, she can feel our kind attention just like she can feel when we mine her for resources.
Things change profoundly when we realize we are in a two-way relationship with her. When we are able to make this paradigm shift, we can no longer behave like she’s not an entity in her own right. We can no longer see her as simply a storehouse of raw materials and territory for us to use according to our shortsighted whims.
As we begin to connect with the wild part of ourselves and therefore with her, we will always come away with evidence that she felt our presence. Time after time, when we go into nature and meditate, or meditate in tune with the wild part of ourselves, she will send us signs and we will know without a doubt—she knows we are there.
And we will also know that not only did she feel our presence, our aliveness, the soft sound of our breath, but she also sent a breeze or a hummingbird or deer strolling by at the perfect time. We learn that when we get still and listen, she will talk to us, she will show us new wisdom for a new way.
So we will know she is alive, with her own wise and gorgeous kind of consciousness. And we will know that she knows when we show up to be with her wholeheartedly. And we will find that whenever we show up to be with her that she showers us with gifts."
- Jessica Snow