What does the earth want? What is its ideal of itself? Not: what do we want to do with it or on it. Not even: what does the plant or animal or rock or water want.
What does the Earth entire,
Gaia, the Earth's own spirit,
Rilke had a strange answer. An intimate lover and knower of nature, of Earth and sky, of Spring and dawn, he wrote that Earth wants to “arise within us invisible.” And then he goes on to shout it out: “Earth! Invisible!” And then again, as if repeating the idea in another form, “What is your urgent demand, if not transformation?”
It would be hard to see what he means, except that it goes along with certain ancient texts and maybe our own simplest experience.
Ancient sources include the fragmentary Manichean texts that speak of the Terra Lucida or World of Light, Kabbalistic texts that speak of the broken vessels and their redemption, apocalyptic texts that speak of the city of gold or transparent or white stone, such that the physical is no longer physical as we know it, but finds its original simplicity.
All these are realized in homeopathic dosage whenever the world transmitted through the senses becomes touching, meaningful, and so invisible as the meaning of any text. The sky or hillside, the stream or tree or herd, then seem to come into their own. They speak. The rightness of our dialogue with earth also becomes apparent or transparent. "Now you've seen us," the objects on the beach say to the young Ian McEwan in his reminiscence of a day on the Mediterranean.
As we struggle with the day to day, as we notice the war of attrition waged against us by a meaningless man-made world and our own habits of thought and feeling and behavior, it is a kind of antidote, a break from self-concern, to think of Earth's own need. This is not simply to be left alone, but to act in collaboration with human care -- as in the Findhorn community of the 1970's.
Our task in these weeks is to allow the light that renews into an imaginal space we ourselves create in meditation. This space is supported by four elements, in one of David Spangler's formulations:
our own individual relationship to Earth's several aspects;
our individual sovereignty or intentionality;
the sense we have of the ideal of humanity;
the sense we have of Earth's own ideal.
Maybe Earth's ideal is to become less of a planet, shined on by an exterior sun, and more of a star: green, blue, shamelessly self-radiant.
all blessings to all,