Rooted: No Need to Appropriate

There are two sides to my personality. Of course, there are more than just this one duality, but this one for today’s discussion.

I was raised in a very religiously observant household, and I embraced it.

Also, I have always loved nature, loved being outside, particularly in wooded areas or up in or near a tree.

And, here, we have a nexus, or at least a potential nexus.

What is that special sacred quality of nature?

While I love nature and love spending time on trails, I do not feel integrated into the natural world. I feel separated. Like a visitor.

I want to feel like I belong here, in the world and of the world.

I want to know the names and characteristics of plants. I want to know the behaviors of animals. I want to know how to feel the coming changes in weather. I want to know where to find the individual stars.

This seems to be such an elementary preliminary requirement before any further knowledge or understanding might be sought. But honestly, there is so much to learn even at this level.

It was with these thoughts that I cautiously (skeptically?) decided to read Rooted: Life at the Crossroads of Science, Nature, and Spirit, by Lyanda Lynn Haupt. Parts of the book, I love. Parts, I’m not so sure about. Parts, I am willing to experiment with.

But this one sentence is perfectly said:

“Yet, through cultivated quietness, through observation, through art, through story, through myth, through poetry, through intuition–

and without any need to appropriate rites played out with depth and care in shamanic cultures

we can go further and greet the slender times that we fall into prerational interbeing with another animal.”

Rooted, by Lyanda Lynn Haupt, pg 144-145

I can observe my world, I can study, I can learn, I can experience–I can even allow my soul to reach out along new tendrils of knowledge–without committing sacrilege. I appreciate Haupt stating this so clearly and beautifully.

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