Template:Gaia as the Whale

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Quote of the Day

Begin the work even though you cannot see the path by which this work can lead to your goal.
Do not block your power with your current understanding.
Evolution is the process by which the impossible becomes possible through small, accumulating changes.
Concentrate on the direction, not the size of the change.
Begin the work with actions that seem tinier than necessary but that are small enough to maintain.
The rate of change is slow at first, but do not prematurely judge your efforts.
Change happens through spirals; the work grows upon itself.
As little changes accumulate, they will reinforce one another and make larger changes possible.
Gradually, balances will shift.
Enemies that block the way will become allies that lead the way.
Where and how this happens cannot be predicted.
You do not work alone.
Billions of other living things are doing the work.
You are part of an invisible power.
As it grows, the erosive power will fade.
Begin the work.

--Gaia's Whisper from Reversing Spirals in Seeing Nature by Paul Krafel

Contemplation for the Day

Let us imagine

You are riding your Elephant and your elephant is swimming in a calm ocean under a grey sky, filled with the promise of rain. Far out of sight of the shore, you feel lost. Your elephant has zig zagged back and forth second guessing the direction to shore and wasting its limited energy criss-crossing the same waves. You can feel it is on the verge of panic. Will it ever be possible for you to reach your goal? Will you ever find that patch of land which is your true calling?

Then the ocean is rent by a powerful geyser only a few tens of meters away. It shoots up disappearing into the clouds. From under the geyser a vague dark shadow appears and spreads and resolves into the rising body of a whale. It breaks the surface and keeps breaking the surface, its dark blue oblong body stretching hundreds of meters ahead and behind you, its barnacled skin rising like an exposed reef only a few meters from you. It is a whale larger than any ever reported. Its eye breaks the surface near you and though, like all large whales, its eye looks like a tiny feature embedded in the side of its massive body, because of its overall size this one has an eye larger than your elephant. The iris is a bright emerald green and even before the pectoral fin gently lifts your elephant out of the water so that it can rest, you know this is Gaia come to give you peace through her wisdom.

She speaks telepathically directly into your mind, "You are troubled, Little One; what conflicting aspirations pull on you so that you feel you are running out of energy and working at cross purposes with yourself?"

In your excitement you speak aloud, "Thank you Gaia for giving me this moment of rest. The world's problems are so great and I feel them on my shoulders pushing me down. I feel they will drown me if I do not find the solution to them." Her wide green eye seems to welcome your words.

Her calming voice re-appears in your mind, in your elephant mind it is like a love song, "Little One, you do not carry the problems of the world alone. Like all gods I demand faith; you must have faith that allies will emerge; after all you are but one part of me and I desire that every part of me work toward solutions to problems."

The clouds break and glimpses of blue sky appear. You speak to Gaia, wondering if your thoughts would be known to her even if you were silent, "But which problem calls me. Every time I start to work on one, another seems bigger, more urgent, more important and so I turn my attention to it. But long before I solve it, I am called to another and another and so I never solve any. What use will my life have been if I have not solved a single problem?" As you speak, her love for you seems to pour forth from the emerald green eye.

Again her voice reaches intimately into your mind and soothes your worries and warms your heart, "Little One, your kind look like ants to me. Have you never watched a forager ant dragging a large crumb back to its colony? It struggles under the weight for although an ant can carry 50 times its weight, it will often try to drag 1000 times its weight. It struggles and makes only a little head way along the scent trail that leads back to its home. Finally it gives up, nearly exhausted and walks away. So much effort wasted. It returns to the colony empty handed along the scent trail. But as it walks, unconsciously it releases more scent and other ants follow that scent back to the crumb it left behind and together these ants eventually manage to drag the crumb back to the colony. Its efforts feed thousands of larvae. Yet by the time the crumb reaches the colony, the first forager ant has moved on to other work and never understands the success it has brought about. Do not expect to understand your part in the work. Do not expect to see the allies that will emerge. They may remain invisible to you. You must have faith that the allies are there and that the work is being done and that you are inspiring more than your fair share of it."

The clouds break further and you feel the heat of father Sun on your skin and the warmth of the Gaia mother coursing through your muscles. Fear of hypothermia leaves you, panic subsides, you whisper to Gaia, "But Gaia I am not a creature of faith; I am a creature of reason." The eye seems to laugh not in mockery but with an infectious mirth.

Again her guiding voice calls to you through the telepathic ether, "Reason is a magic tool that your kind invented. I have no understanding of it. But I know this, it only works when it is supplied with clear knowledge. When knowledge is clouded it can give you no clear direction. When reason fails you, you must still make a choice. You are usually better off to act as if one or another answer is true rather than to just be paralyzed by uncertainty. So you choose an answer and act as if it is true until you can gain the knowledge you need. That is faith, Little One. It is another tool for other situations; it is not an enemy of reason but an ally of it."

Now the Sun is out in its full power and you see that under the gentle waves there are golden sand bars that now glow in the bright sunlight and extend as far as one horizon. They form a maze, the path along them is not clear. But you are certain that if you follow them you will get somewhere long before you run out of energy. Your path may not be clear but the process for walking the path is; just keep putting one foot in front of the other. You think to Gaia, "Thank you Gaia for this guidance; I will use faith as a light in dark places." With that your elephant steps off the fin and onto a sand bar. As you begin your journey again, Gaia disappears behind you into the deep places.

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