Deena Metzger speaks with Joanna Harcourt Smith about the characters of her latest book “La Negra y Blanca”, grounded visions, the coming shift, making alliances and restoring a right relationship with the Earth and all beings, “the conquest never ended”, the helping guide of the ancestors, the process of peace-making, “the way of story”…
This is one guide to how we change our minds sufficiently to live differently and act in ways that will preserve the future and protect the earth and all beings. When we incorporate these ways of thinking, we will no longer be people who do harm. But again, we have to change our minds as we won’t fully know what to do or how to do it until we respond instinctively with different minds, values and reflexes. These 19 Ways indicate the areas where transformation can occur.
The changes required are systemic and cellular. Too often these days, the very framing of the issues limit the possibilities. How will we survive? How will we thrive? How will we prosper? may no longer be the questions, if the WE refers only to humans. We have to free ourselves from the programming, at the least, of the last century. It is a huge task and it is possible. We have allies. They are not all human. The future is possible BUT we have to offer ourselves to it, unconditionally. When we do, guidance occurs. Spirit speaks to us when we open to it.
The changes we are called to make so that the earth and all beings might survive are extensive and extreme. They require comprehensive and global shifts of consciousness and activity. No one is exempt from such a challenge. As extreme, at this time, as are the dangers to all, are the signs of possibility we witness and experience each day. These are 19 ways that have been communicated to me over the years. They are certainly not the only ways but it seems that each one is essential. They represent a significant change in consciousness from seeking development or vision for oneself to seeking out the precise offering one is being asked to make on behalf of the future. It could take a lifetime to apprentice oneself to even one such way of transformation. We are called to meet each one of them – and perhaps more. We are called to commit ourselves to recognizing and understanding the nature of each one of these, as best as we can, as quickly as is possible. Each day we have less time to enter these sacred ways. As indicated, these are Ways that can best be realized in community, that is with each other and also through a direct and true relationship with Spirit. Basic to entering and securing a 5th World are alliances with all beings and following the teachings of Spirit.
19 Ways to the 5th World
1. SPIRIT EXISTS. Spirit speaks to each of us in a particular and shared language. Entering into a dialogue with the divine. Developing and living according to a spiritual practice that develops from a real relationship with spirit.
2. COMMUNITY. Recognizing and living aligned with community as an essential vessel and means of transformation.
3. COUNCIL. Entering and trusting the ways of Council, Dare’ and Mandlovu mind. In Council, we seek to access wisdom that we do not carry individually by what arises among us. Listening to each other is more important than speaking. Speaking in Council is commitment. It is truth telling. We speak from our deepest selves and stand by and live by what we say.
4. STORY. Story is a pattern of events and also a path. Learning to listen, to recognize, understand and attend the way of Story and the particular path of healing and transformation it reveals for each one.
5. THE PATHLESS PATH. Recognizing the path that one has traveled and seeing where one has been taken and the dynamic path that emerges from the journey. Attuning to, developing and being faithful to a spiritual practice on the pathless path.
6. BEARING WITNESS. Bearing witness to the horror and corruption of our history and these times and scrutinizing our lives accordingly.
7. DISENGAGEMENT. Consciously ceasing our involvement with those forms and values that we, individually, believe do harm to human and non-human beings, the earth and the future. Entering the long and exacting practice of bringing our lives into alignment with our beliefs and understanding.
8. HEALING WAR, PEACEMAKING and THE NO ENEMY WAY. Committing ourselves to healing war within us and in the world. Understanding and incorporating the No Enemy Way into our daily private and public ways as best as we can. Committing ourselves to our transformation from war-traumatized people to peacemakers and visionaries.
9. REVISIONING. Revisioning public institutions of thought and action. Imagining and aligning ourselves with ReVisioned Medicine, Science, Law, Education, Economic and Social systems. For example, a ReVisioned Medicine practices the No Enemy Way, does no harm and integrates the combined wisdom of medical people and medicine people. Assuming the equal relevance of indigenous, earth centered, spirit centered wisdom in all reasoning and thinking processes. Changing one’s mind.
10. INDIGENOUS WISDOM TRADITIONS. Studying, respecting, honoring, preserving, supporting, allying with indigenous wisdom traditions. Changing the activities and forms of our lives accordingly from respecting and honoring elders to living prayerfully.
11. DREAMS AND DIVINATION. Living by Dream, Intuition and Divination. Reading the signs and then following other spirit centered ways of knowing. Yielding to initiation and living accordingly.
12. HEALING. Recognizing the presence of healing. Learning the ways of healing. Seeking out healing. Becoming a healing presence.
13. MITAKUYE OYASIN. Living according to All Our Relations.
14. THE WILD. Protecting, preserving, sustaining, bringing healing to the wild, the earth and all beings.
15. THE OTHERS – NON HUMAN BEINGS. Recognizing the intelligence and agency of non-human beings and living among them accordingly.
16. BEAUTY AND CEREMONY. Living according to Beauty, Creativity, Intuition, Prayer, Ritual, Ceremony, Loving kindness and Compassion as essential forms. Recognizing that Joy is Praise.
17. SILENCE. Valuing and engaging in silence, solitude, formless forms and not knowing.
18. SANCTUARY. Honoring, providing, becoming sanctuary for all beings by learning the way of the land.
19. HEART MIND. Thinking with the heart. Speaking from the heart. Listening with the heart. Living and responding in heartfelt ways. Meeting the world and all situations with the knowledge, wisdom, and understanding of the heart. Heartstorming with others.
THEN COMMITMENT and stepping through the portal into a different field of understanding and assumptions. Living faithfully according to the laws of the 5th World that mandate serving Spirit and the on-going future.
Between one world and another,
Lies the rift and the increasing separation,
As the plates of one mind slip away
From the plates of another mind.
I do not question which way I am to go,
But call to my heart to act on the decision made
To follow the soul
Or I will be split apart too,
As so many are,
The violent demands of our everyday life
And the strange beauty of Spirit afar.
I must choose Beauty
No matter the cost in this life.
I must choose and leap
Across the widening valley;
We cannot rest between.
Ah Beauty! Receive me in your open arms.