Change and Continuity

Flowering!The world is flowering and so are my allergies. This year allergy meds don’t seem to be helping all that much.

I was optimistic and put on short sleeves this morning. I may have to change into long sleeves before I leave for work. We’ve had one very brief visit from the Thunder Beings so far this spring. Hopefully that will change over the next few days and they will return in all their finery, introducing change and transformation.

We humans are complex systems, always evolving into new forms. Our cultures are also alive, constantly in the process of becoming, even as they remain constant. Yet, how often we expect things, persons, and cultures to remain unchanged, to be static.

Last evening we hosted a gathering for our friends and colleagues, Eric Miller and Magdalene Jeyarathanam, from India. Eric is a folklorist and storyteller, and has done considerable research and collaboration with tribal people in India. There is great pressure on India’s tribal people to remain as they were in the imaginal past, even as they seek to join the global conversation. Interestingly, even many folklorists support this notion of the authentic. Eric challenges this stereotype by using the Internet and other media to connect storytellers around the world, and to share their stories with a wider audience. He delights in supporting tribal and Indigenous people to hold firmly to tradition while participating actively in the contemporary world.

So often folks ask for healing when they have changed, yet have not settled into a new state or identity. Suddenly they are not the person they identify as Self. Sometimes the problem is that others cannot adapt to the changes. How often have you found yourself settling into a renewed send of self, only to discover friends and loved ones uncomfortable with the change?

We are open systems, ever-changing, reflecting the underlying structure of the universe, of All-That-Is. I, the flowers, the atmosphere, and the pollen are one. My immune system may forget this, reading pollen as a threat. Just so, we may feel threatened by our own evolution and that of those we love. That is so very human.

 

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5 thoughts on “Change and Continuity

  1. “He delights in supporting tribal and Indigenous people to hold firmly to tradition while participating actively in the contemporary world.”
    This is so important, and there is all too often a peculiar sort of prejudice hampering the bi-cultural life. Somehow the idea that one can be tribal, visionary, ethnic etc and function in the contemporary materialistic corporate world.

    • Yes, colonialism has taken our human concerns about difference and turned them against us, making our world smaller and meaner. The corporate world is simply another face of the colonial enterprise, re the Hudson Bay Company and their ilk.

  2. So, Michael, you have been reading my mind? I’ve been pondering lately the thoughts that you have written here. That’s uncanny.

    • Tree girl, there is something afoot. I have tried replying twice before, and the computer has disappeared my response before I could send them. Slashing funding for Indigenous people seems to have become a worldwide effort. Perhaps it arises from the fact that we are still here. We were, I guess, supposed to go away or die away, maybe going to some alternative universe where we remain in spirit form. The North American author, Thomas King, writes about the dead Indian – the one who died nobly resisting the invader, or who continues to live the way she did in 1800. There is little room for contemporary, urban, or mixed heritage Indians (Indigenous people). What’s worse, since some status Indians remain, they are supposed, by treaty, to receive payments and to have jurisdiction over their resources/land. Not very convenient.

      As to the problem of who is Indigenous, I personally would like that to be settled in a way that is fair to all, including those of us who have complex heritages. Sounds as though Australia is on the right track.

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