Have you read Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants yet?! I use it like a traditional Christian would use a bible. I flip through it at least twice a week to soak up her deep loving and wisdom. Robin Wall Kimmerer, a member of Citizens Potawatomi writes “we Americans are reluctant to learn a foreign language of our own species, let alone another species. But imagine the possibilities. Imagine the access we would have to different perspectives, the things we might see through other eyes, the wisdom that surrounds us. We don’t have to figure out everything by ourselves: there are intelligences other than our own, teachers all around us. Imagine how much less lonely the world would be.”
After reading this quote about 68 times, it brought up thoughts of how I can learn to speak the language of another species. We’re not talking, “bark bark” as a language for dogs. It’s much more profound than that. Malcolm and I spoke about it many times, especially with our animals. For example, I started using my eyes to communicate with Atticus because that’s how he tells us things. If he wants our food, his eyes will dart over to it and back to mine. If he feels scared of thunder, he has a look of pleading and pain in his eyes. If he wants me to open the back door, he’ll sit on my chest and cut his eyes towards the back door. Since then, I cut my eyes towards something I want him to see or where I want him to move. A light of recognition passes through his eyes. I just need to learn how to be more persuasive with my eyes so he actually does what I’m asking of him. Like his mother, he can act extremely stubborn, especially when I try to teach him something new. We’re getting there 🙂
Now, something a little more woo-woo but in the same vein as above, Malcolm researched how to communicate with animals and insects. To connect, he envisions a strand of light from his chest to the animal’s chest. Okay, hear me out. When we visited a lake recently while traveling, he communicated with three dragon flies who landed on our noses, heads, shoulders, and even my hand when I held it as a perch and invited the dragon fly to land(!!!). Up until then, they flew around in our general area but avoided us, most likely for safety. One radiated a gorgeous sky blue, another a midnight blue, and the final one glittered a purple magenta. The purple magenta one liked me the most, and exhibited a playful, youthful energy. The sky blue dragonfly hung out on Malcolm’s hat for a good 30 minutes before flying over to me to rest on the corner of my sunglasses. Midnight blue landed on my nose when I floated in the water with just my eyes, nose, and mouth uncovered by the water. We floated there for quite some time, two creatures in harmony. It was a gorgeous experience that brought tears to my eyes. These beauties taught me to become still, quiet, and patient. When I achieved the stillness that was requested of me, I felt a glowing harmony like I’ve never before experienced. Like Wall Kimmerer wrote “Imagine the possibilities,”!
What lessons have you learned from animals/insects/plants/earth in general?