La Casa de El Senor de Pipa
Valentin speaks much of faith. Whilst I am not without faith, my path is governed more by gnosis.
This last week since Durga's departure has been a difficult one. In our comfortable Western existences, it is easy to avoid issues which may cause us to look at aspects of ourselves we would prefer to remain occluded. It is relatively easy to change coffee shops, supermarkets, even jobs if there is something therein "pushes our buttons". We can avoid the person with whom we have a disagreement, and modern relationships are significantly less bound in social mores than a generation ago...if a relationship reaches a point where personalities cannot reconcile, it can be dissolved with little societal repercussion.
Conversely those in less affluent cultures, or indeed less affluent members of Western cultures, find themselves too bound up in the daily mechanisms of society to be afforded the luxuries of contemplating existential dilemnas.
We who remain here in San Rafael de Tabay have found ourselves as a group grappling with the issue of how to deal with the very real needs of individuals (our individualities after all, very certainly a construct of our cultures) within an equally real and obvious group construct. Durga's physical departure highlighted how strong that group structure was, and those who remained were left to grapple with the repercussions of that realisation. My feeling was that there was also a less mentally conscious yet strong intuitive desire to extend the group's energy in support and love of Durga in her solitary journey back to our much loved land. This, coupled with the strong catalytic effect of the Sacred Medicines and remaining in a cultural context very different to our own, generated some anxiety and confusion and the subsequent decision to suspend the ceremonial aspect of the work we were doing.
My own commitment is strongly to the message offered by these medicines, as I feel that they are intrinsic to a way of understanding which can lead to great healing for a deeply wounded species. To be sure there are other ways to receive the same wisdom, but we humans appear to need all the help we can get at this time, and it behooves us to drop our perceived need for defence and listen to all of the teachings which we reject due to a narrow cultural or intellectual viewpoint. My heart desire also is to honour the connections between people, within community however established. It was this commitment which suggested a need to put aside my own feeling to take this opportunity to learn with the medicines for the stability and cohesion of the group which had been strongly woven these last weeks.
So the process of unravelling the individual feelings and responses in regards to the recognition of group process has continued unabated during the time since Durga left us physically. Despite the cessation of ceremony the medicines have been strongly with us, and this process of finding balance in such a crucible that being held together in a foreign land creates has been strong indeed. I had a strong knowing of the need for a certain quality of outcome, and that possibility seemed at times tenuous.
Last night, after the digestion of the news of Durga's safe arrival in Australia, an opportunity for growth and healing was grasped. This has led to a day of significant bouyancy, and sharing something of the social character of Australia with our hosts and their family. Christopher and I worked in the cactus fields today, assisting Valentin in preparing the earth for the transplanting of his much beloved friends (for to him, the San Pedro cactus are indeed family). We shared lunch with his family and moved to a new posada, where we will stay for the remainder of our time here as a group. The atmosphere is much more conducive to the process that we are continuing, more nature. We will take ceremony with the medicines again this coming Tuesday as a consolidation of the work we have done thus far.
I am deeply grateful for the grace and maturity with which all concerned have worked here. Navigating the needs of what are undoubtedly strong personalities in a time of heightened pressure is no easy task, and Christopher, Lakshmi, Valentin and Maria have been remarkable in their capacity to see the truth of the heart behind the minutia of daily needs. For myself, I am happy to again to have material confirmation of the depth of my heart's knowing.
All is well in our world.
Aho Metukuye Oyasin
Love to you all