Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Wild Soul of Nature

I've been reading Women Who Run With the Wolves, and so maybe that was why I dreamed of foxes. In the dream I was at the Ecomuseum or looking out a window of a building onto a field. A red blur of foxes ran over a hill, and I caught a glimpse of fluffy red tails and their distinctive coats. I turned to someone and said, I didn't know that foxes lived and ran together in a clan like wolves do: tribe, group...pack, that's it!

On the same day, early in the morning I noticed my dog sniffing the grass on the front lawn and wandered over to see what she was smelling - a rather big dead animal. At first I thought it was a rabbit, but after getting the shovel and turning it over, I noticed the long whitish snout, sharp teeth and ugly bent claws, roundish tail.  An opossum! It seemed unlikely this far north, but a quick search on the internet for images showed me it was beyond a doubt a dead possum.

Two wild animals creeping into my zone, one in dream, one on my lawn.  What could it mean? The value of a little wildness in my conventional, tidy life... I ponder the question, why does the word 'wild' thrill me, especially in the sense of the inner wild woman that Clarissa Pinkola Estes talks about in her book. I lead a fairly suburban life - neither in the woods, nor fully in the city. Our house is near water, and that brings closeness to wild geese and ducks, but besides that it's the skunks and raccoons and squirrels, crows and sparrows that keep us company.

-----But the wildness I think I'm missing is that connection to the instinctual, the healthy body instincts and feelings that get smothered by too much 'civilizing,' too much worried parenting, too many strictures, too much rigidity and restriction of freedom.  We're told when we're little to quiet down, to not bother our mother when she's busy (on the phone, stirring a pot, reading the newspaper, trying to have a quiet moment!), to let Daddy snooze in his chair; we're kept in straight lines in desks with our hands on top of them, on good behaviour at school, we line up after recess, we don't let the cruel words of boys and girls hurt us, 'sticks and stones will break my bones'....we hold things in tight, inside.

Where is the wild nature of the pre-school child, the spontaneous feeling that fills our spirit and calls to our soul - the way the body could move with the soul if it didn't feel so tight! I'm missing that wildness, that get up and go-ness, that freedom to move. Last week I began working with a Rolfer (body worker), and I have already found a small measure of joy creeping back into my body, freeing up some old tightness.

How can you let your wild nature soar today, just a little? Maybe a little jig on the grass? A moment alone with the crows? Can we be strong enough to listen to what our bodies whisper in our ears, our instinct and intuition? Estes suggests we not treat our bodies as a dumb beast of burden carrying our weight in the world, but as a rocket launcher! A place, a window that the soul looks out of. Let us let the wild animal of our body love what it needs to love....


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