Beloveds, I want to deeply appreciate those of you who have shared messages of love, support and empathy in the wake of the devastating fires here at Findhorn in the early hours of Monday, 12 April. The outpouring of love from around the world continues to be an ever-present soothing balm and a source of strength.
For those who may not be aware, sadly, both our Community Centre and the Main Sanctuary on our Park campus, where I live, and where many of you will have experienced unique moments of peace, bliss, belonging and connection, have been burned to the ground. We are blessed that no lives were harmed. As you can well imagine, we are all in shock and grief-stricken that these two treasured meeting spaces that represent the heart of community, where countless souls have gathered over the decades to spiritually align, commune, connect and socialise, are no longer. In this raw state, words fail me really. Lots of tears. Lots of symbolism. Lots of universal feedback.
The community has been gathering to support one another in the grieving through meditation and prayer, devotional singing, large witnessing circles and smaller, more intimate sharing circles.
For me, it feels important to honour the grief and loss process; to humble ourselves and stay in the uncomfortable, poignant space of the unknown; and to fully be with the mix of feelings and emotions right now, rather than leaping ahead to what comes next. That will come in perfect timing.
This is a time to deeply examine and be with the lessons underlying this physical devastation. We know that the fires were set intentionally and that the person responsible turned themselves in to the authorities a few hours later. I’ve been sitting with these profound words of Bayo Akomolafe, who was a guest speaker during our recently completed online learning journey, Living the Story: Myth, Magic & Miracles. No longer are these thoughts simply mental constructs; they have visited upon our community directly:
“We need to be willing to meet the monsters, the gargoyles, the wound, the tricksters dancing in the wilds beyond our fences. We then experience an opening – a fugitive crack in the plantation wall. This is a place of deep, risky, often troubling encounters with the more-than-human. We will not transform into new shapes until we ask the difficult questions. And these questions will come to us as a gift of the opening, as a gift of the wound of these times. It is in that place of obstacle that magic becomes possible.”
And so I, personally, am being careful not to spiritually bypass the universal feedback. I therefore choose to continue to sit in the fire with the difficult questions; to stay open to myself, my fellow community members, our global family, the beings seen and unseen who overlight our centre and its founding impulse, and the “crowd of sorrows still sweeping through our house”. Yes, no doubt, they are “clearing us out for some new delight”, as Rumi says, but for right now, I am lovingly and tenderly hospicing the old before welcoming and midwifing the birth of the new.
Your prayers, care, love and blessings are so very welcome and so very needed at this time.
All my love and gratitude, in community,
Mattie Porte, Manager of the Findhorn Foundation’s New Story Community and Programmes 💕🙏✨
Photo: One of the little gates in the Original Garden near the Main Sanctuary, taken today. The gate is so titled in honour of Come Closer, cofounder Dorothy Maclean’s wonderfully inspiring book of messages from the God Within.
For more detailed information, gifting and official updates, please visit the Findhorn Foundation’s main website.