This year we are exploring the challenges of stillness, of quiet, of not expending energy. Oddly, we chose this theme long before the pandemic created the shutdown, and now we are learning how to deal with isolation, with separation (at least six feet).
Whether or not we intended to, we are all learning how to live in a changed world. Whether we still go to work or not, we have reduced our social interaction, and what we still have is handled differently. We hear about people baking more, gardening more, reading more. Each of us has been trying out new things, and they are, perforce, more solitary. Avoiding others so that we can keep them safe from an invisible danger is so ephemeral. Due to the large proportion of those who are asymptomatic, we can’t know if we are ill, or the people around us are ill, so all the precautions may seem pointless. At the same time they are critical and life saving. Not knowing whether what you are doing is useless or vital in any instance cam make you insecure. It’s easy to get frustrated and stop doing something when you don’t know whether it’s helping or not. Because of this holding space is hard, stillness is hard.
Imagine you were told to push a button every minute and this would keep someone alive, you might know them, you might not. You are in a room alone with the button. For a while you watch the clock and push it every sixty seconds. Time passes. You begin to wonder whether the button actually does what you were told it does; can you trust the people who told you this? You might get distracted, there may be things in the room to amuse yourself with, you may miss a push or two. You feel guilty, and scared that you may inadvertently have hurt someone. Hours pass, your finger gets tired and you try different fingers. More hours pass, you think about many things, and wonder how this illogical system could possibly have the effects you were told it did. If you have the internet, you may exchange theories with other button pushers elsewhere. You wait eagerly for your replacement button pusher to arrive. If you prefer a less clearly invented scenario, you can imagine yourself as a neolithic person keeping the fire going, wondering if it really is keeping predators at bay. Imagine your own scenario. Each person will learn different lessons from the same experience, will experience things a bit differently.
Would it help to imagine yourself as the person who is being helped by the stranger who cannot see them? We all are in so many ways at the mercy of others who do what they feel is right, even when tired, or bored, or unsure if what they are doing is meaningful.
In many ways we are keeping each other alive simply by being there. As our bodies share heat with others near us in the cold, so does our life touch the lives of others, whether we know them or not. We may have learned how to feel the etheric strands that connect us to others, or not, but they are there. Whether we call them the Web of Wyrd, or Ika strands, or Energy cords, they connect us to everyone and everything we’ve touched, and through them to others. This is one of the reasons people study shamanistic techniques so that it’s easier to perceive the energy around us. It makes it easier to accept without having to take it on faith. Whether you are there or not, trust that when we are putting out the effort, it is reaching the others who need it.