I’ve just spent the week on Iona, mystical Isle of beauteous repute, drinking in the colours, winds and wilds. There were lambs. Miniature, black ones. On tumbling, shaky legs. There were stones. Pink, speckled ones. On shores by turns soft and icily slicing. There were dead things – skulls, rabbits rotting, placentas. There was enormous sky, and moon half showing her luminosity as we wandered, seeking solace, answers, or better still, questions. There were the otherworldly, metallic, radar sounds of snipe flying overhead at night. And then, there were humans, like the moon, waxing into wholeness.
We were studying Bill Plotkin’s nature-based map of the human psyche and indulging in all sorts of outlandish activities, cross-species communication and other foolishness. Simply delicious. The beauty of this map is its focus on “wholing”, without forgetting the fragments of our wounded selves – the parts that protect us in ever-more astonishing, disturbing, ways and can’t be ignored. But they can be loved, conversed with, related with and – in some imperfect way – integrated back into the community of the self. Just as the world around us, and all its inhabitants, can be brought back into right relationship with humanity. Or rather, we can allow ourselves to be restored to a conscious relating with this whole interconnected web of life that accompanies and supports us every moment of every day. Last time I checked.
I was told by a kilted, arms-bearing protector of the realm to look west. Enter Mr Batman. An exceedingly shy, socially awkward blood-sucking gentlebat with some questionable appetites. I look forward to further making his acquaintance. Others, possibly, won’t.
Skye was ever-present. Its southern peaks looming out of the clouds across the sea. It’s the second time I’ve spent a week staring at the Cuillin range and it would be fair to say it’s worked its magic on me. Apart from reading Robert Macfarlane’s description of them as one of the few remaining wild places on these isles, my thinly Scottish blood flows with MacDonald of Skye and I really want to go there. To continue the harvesting of ancestral explorations and soak up further Hebridean flavours.
I need to write. To express. To sing. To run around in Nature, on paper, in Spirit, like a loon. Since I started this blog the fear of writing and sharing my authentic self has significantly diminished, but in recent times it has crept in through the back door, not showing its face but showing up in the length of time between posts and a careful, constricting editor. The repressor is strong and ever-active so I am choosing to test myself and seed the intention to post something every week for the next month. Rough and unpolished as it might be. I hope this will be of benefit to you, kind reader, as much as it is me. May my less edited missives coax some more magnificence from us all!
On that note I have just heard back from the “Lower Master” of my old all boys boarding school – that he is going to schedule me in for a talk to the “C-blockers” (17 year olds to the rest of the world). I’m in! Mental health, emotional intelligence, vulnerability, distorted masculinity, sexuality, sovereignty, ecology, purpose…. I am truly excited. If you have any ideas and suggestions of stuff to get in there to help them consider their own unique potential, especially in how to seize and hold the attention of 250 seventeen year old boys of the ADHD age I’d love to hear them.
I shall leave you now with Shane Koyczan – *WTF* – who reminds me of the importance of taking that risk (thanks Duncs). 7 minutes of musically accompanied spoken word with an awesomely illustrated video spilling gold. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=An4a-_NjilY