Shaman woman approaches
Earth is her body
Where I gather my runes
The image ‘She circles my world in birdsong’ was influenced by my reading a book by David Abram: Becoming Animal: An Earthly Cosmology. David Abram concludes a section on the ‘discourse of birds’ by describing the twin lines of birdsong, continually moving round the planet as the Sun rises & sets in different parts of the world. I found the thought astonishing & delightful. ‘Such is the strange world we inhabit: an immense sphere around whose surface two long lines of birdsong are steadily sweeping – always opposite one another, two breaking waves of vocal exuberance rolling ceaselessly around the planet.’ 1)
‘Out of planetary plan’ comes from my understanding of the Planet as a Living Being. I believe the Planet knows the environmental catastrophe it is facing & is calling people to become involved in working with the Earth to restore the Great Balance. In the 1970s chemist James Lovelock & and microbiologist Lynn Margulis developed a theory of the Earth as a Living Being. They named the Living Being ‘Gaia’ after the Greek Goddess of the Earth. However the idea of Earth as a Living Being has been around a long time. In ancient times the philosopher Plato wrote of Anima Mundi (the World Soul) as a Living Being. ‘Therefore, we may consequently state: this world is a Living Being endowed with a soul and intelligence… a single living entity containing all other living entities, which by their nature are all interrelated.’ 2)
‘Tui’, ‘Kōpara’ (the Bellbird) & ‘Kōkako’ are New Zealand songbirds.
The image of ‘Shaman Woman’ comes from the following poem by Jay Ramsey. His poem is written as a response to Hexagram 36.
Come Home. Listen to the woman now
Listen to her calm, her knowing
– let go to her.
She knows the inside of you
And she knows you belong together.
She knows what binds you –
The whole of her body is that. Listen now.
It is her voice you need to hear.
Her benison, her blessing
That stills the air around you
As she looks into her palms
And the curving grass, the sky and the darting birds
Are one with you –
As you feel the ground beneath your feet
As you gather in, and wait:
And now is the circle
1) David Abram: Becoming Animal: An Earthly Cosmology, Pg. 185
2) Plato, Timaeus, 29/30, 4th Century BC.
3) Poem by Jay Ramsey, The Shamanic Oracle of Change, Translated Martin Palmer, Jay Ramsay with Zhao Xiaomin, Pg. 138.