Rhonda Fabian, writer, filmmaker, and mindfulness advocate, shares her story one year on from Findhorn’s New Story Summit….
Nature speaks at Findhorn – if one listens – and not in some airy or theoretical way, but directly, clearly, and intimately. Of course I had heard about this legendary quality of Findhorn Community, and my rational mind resisted it. I was there as a filmmaker to help make sense of the New Story Summit – yet time and again I slipped away from panels and keynotes, pulled by an almost magnetic urge to be outdoors in the perfect weather and alone.
It was while walking along the lush shortcut paths, that huge nodding flowers literally began calling out to me, causing me to retrace my steps and gaze into their inscrutable smiling depths. This kept happening – the grass, the leaves, the rain, the bees – every single living thing sang to me at Findhorn – joyfully, playfully. Insistently.
Even in the dead of night, the North Sea awakened me with dark incantations that, despite a bad knee injury, had me hobbling blindly through the woods in a light rain. On the way I met a huge white horse, a Percheron I think, the largest animal I have ever encountered alone, one-on-one. We shared a communion in the pre-dawn before I continued on to ponder the depthless heaving sea, so dark and vast, it made me weep. The stars themselves gazed back at me in a wonder that mirrored my own sense of our astonishing connectedness.
By Summit’s end Nature reclaimed me as her lover. In a distant time we had been united, yet I had forgotten her. Now I saw that the spirits of animals, plants, rocks and waters are calling out to us always, and they speak in tongues we once understood, and some small part of us might still. By losing our kinship with such things we have made the gravest possible error as humans.
While we searched our souls at the New Story Summit, Nature was searching us out as well – inviting us to restore our most fundamental relationship and make her our partner on the journey to come. She’s got the maps, and from the atomic to the cosmic they are wildly complex and miraculous, delicate, radiant, sacred, and completely genius.
By the grace of great teachers, especially beloved Thich Nhat Hanh, Nancy Roof, Judy Wicks, Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, and others, I have been learning about how we might cooperate with Nature’s brillant design to begin reversing the troubles we have caused. An attempt to synthesize these ideas into a set of principles and practices called Engaged Ecology will appear in Kosmos Journal and elsewhere this fall. I hope to attend the Climate Summit in Paris – to seek out the people framing those critical negotiations through the lens of sacred ecology.
Mainly though I will be listening hard, to hear a story muttered on the wind and whispered by the rain, known well by trees and foxes and flowers and birds – a story neither new nor ancient – it is simply The Story. All are invited to listen and to hear.