The West of the Medicine Wheel is where we find the Sun setting. Here we explore our mortality, we let go, we fall into somber and dream.
I just returned from Vancouver, B.C. I travelled out West to visit with my in-laws who retired in Port-Albernie a little over fifteen years ago. I was also invited to give an introductory Conference, in Vancouver to promote our up coming workshop on Indigenous Dreaming, in October. A few of our friends moved to B.C. in the last twenty years and we looked forward to connecting with them again. Finally, I hadn’t been in Vancouver since 1986 (Expo) and looked forward to a 2nd visit.
With four different reasons to head out towards the West -- I can't say I'm at all surprised to have anchored into a journey; which quite remarkably revealed the West of my personal Wheel and it's collective connections. It will take more then one blog entry to go through all of what I've learnt and healed through this latest trip.
My husband and I decided to rent a car so that we could freely travel the region. In 1986 we drove through the Island and the Vancouver area; and loved the scenery: The mountains, the open sea, the numerous creeks and amazing century old trees. It was because of our trip to B.C. 28 years ago that we decided to get married.
Bliss inspired us!
It just seemed befitting to return out west, for our 26th wedding anniversary.
Honestly, I was quite disappointed to find a city of skyscrapers the size of New York or Montreal. Twenty eight years ago, there were laws in place, which prohibited the construction of buildings over 8 to 12 storeys high.
I guess the economy won over the environment!
I couldn’t believe how much had changed in 28 years. The buildings hide the mountains and you had to drive to the shore to see the ocean. Once on the coast, huge tankers or cruise ships crowded the waterways. Nature no longer dominated the view.
On our way back from Nanaimo at the end of the week, we met up with some friends for some fish and chips in the town of Horseshoe Bay. PU a friend of ours who lives in BC recently returned to India to care for his father. As he talked about his trip to Bombay, I recognized some of my own observations of Vancouver and other cities around the World. It isn’t any different in Montreal. The cities overpower the landscape. These days, it seems that no matter where we go on the Planet, humans and their obsession with economy (money) changes and fills the space.
Think about it if Indigenous Dreaming is about how natural / cosmological realities impact Creation Time / or the Dream Time; what could it mean if the dreaming was suddenly overpowered by human waste (programs, materialism / economy etc…)? In an earlier blog entry while I was traveling through Banff, I spoke how the trees were infected and dry. The floods, the tornadoes, the forest fires have drastically increased in the last few years. Animals are disappearing and even though a huge amount of the population prefers to stay in denial, we are marching towards a reality that is affected by humanity rather than nature.
When dreaming “the land” we often come across very particular traits, which belong to the territory. Often people who live in the region will unconsciously mimic these traits. Where you may find the “surfer dude” in California, we noticed the “hippie” still well and alive in Vancouver. KD who has been in Vancouver for close to 20 years describes the people (herself included) as having “a sense of flightiness, flakiness, lack of commitment, transient, difficulty forming solid friendships or relationship (if you are not immediately in front of people they seem to forget you exist), a general lack of ability to connect (no eye contact). It seems people have a really hard time making decisions and committing to things until the last minute.
I noticed as soon as I arrived in Vancouver that I felt more anxious. LB and KD both expressed that they struggled with anxiety (especially in the last 2 to 3 years) and couldn’t quite explain why. After a while the excuse that “we’re more stressed these days because of work” doesn’t quite answer the question… I know for a fact that I’m hypersensitive to my environment and because I’m a traditional Dreamer – “I dream the land”. In most areas with a great concentration of population the anxiety level seems to increase. It doesn’t have anything to do with what I’m doing or how I’m doing it – most times it’s just about “collective emotions and reactions.” Of course if I allow myself to mimic the anxiety, it gets worst.
KD said: “I also experience what I could call surges, and depressions or falls. For a few days I’ll feel anxiety, they I’ll fall into a really low mood, then will get bursts of high energy that will last a few days. Overall my energy levels and moods are not consistent. “
It took leaving the city for a few days to uncover some kind of “energetic blockage” in the centre of town. In my dream it felt like energy was being vacuumed out of the Earth and then, released in surges. I was able to draw small scribbles on a map after dreaming a few days on it. Once I returned and showed the map to KD and EA, we discovered together that in this particular part of town, there were 40 to 50 salmon streams, which were buried over by construction. It doesn’t help, that such thing as “fracking” for natural gas and drilling for oil continues in Northern BC. It simply shows that we’ll stop at nothing to “rape our planet” for our economic growth.
It’s incredible how nature, cosmology and humanity can affect the dreaming. In return the dreaming communicates to us how it feels about these impacts in hope that we can bring forth changes. Unfortunately, we’ve stopped observing the Way of the Sacred Circle almost 100 years ago and because of it, we’ve stopped receiving messages from the Dream Time. The Mayans expressed through the building of their Temples that natural, cosmological and human reality had an affect on Life every 52 years. In 2012, this reality came to a close as the Mayans had predicted. Instead, it now takes half that time (25 years) for changes to occur. Who would have guessed that by ignoring circular living we’d have such a detrimental affect on Creation Time?
It seems so obvious to me that if we wanted to reverse the affects all we’d need to do is to return to circular thinking. Have we gone too far? Are we no longer capable of returning to this way of life?