These are the bones. The archeological text of us, from the first word to the last.
Just as the primordial, single-celled organisms emerged from the muddy depths to grasp motility and develop a hunger for wider and wider horizons, so also does the human fetus begin its quest for sentience within the oceanic environment of the mother womb. Only after endless divisions and multiplications of the fertilized egg at a microscopic level does a coherent structure of form and spirit begin to take shape . A neural tube appears, and, around it, flesh and eye spots, a beating heart. A reptilian tail and a spinal cord congeal, the first hard evidence of our personal story. A neoplasmic entity still, it cannot comprehend its final form. It senses only it’s intimate relationship with all living things, not yet having realized itself as homo sapiens. It reaches out to discover its true identity and, by and by a brain, appendages and facial features develop that become, over time, recognizable to us as one of our own.
Our bones remain as the final evidence that we were here, as an individual, at some point in our universal and planetary history. The bones of all of us, human and otherwise, are the hieroglyphs we leave behind, perchance at some distant time, to be unearthed and pondered over by others.
Without their structure, we would not be able to stand, nor sit, nor guide our hands to wanting mouths to feed ourselves and others. Bones are the bows and arrows with which we direct our thoughts and feelings, brain and intellect into action during our lifetimes. Without them, we would be unable to write down our own name.
Let us not, however, forget the flesh and spirit that imbued those bones with the desire and ambition to fulfill our human potential. Let us not forget the mind that thought of the name by which we would be known.
The bones of this particular fish could be those of some prehistoric ancestor, or perhaps a more modern catch of some blind, albino creature that lives a thousand leagues below sea level. In either case, we should be aware that our ancestors had highly sophisticated and refined structures and that we did, indeed, emerge from the oceans as their progeny, eventually to crawl and then walk upright as sentient beings.
The oceans contain deeply mythological stories of sacramental renewal and spiritual cleansing. The waters also hold the mysteries of the human heart and these springs belong to the feminine. Out of this aquatic knowledge we once, long ago, emerged to rise to our place as the servants and stewards of all the land. Our duties lie in the preservation and nurturance of all things, flora and fauna alike. We have evolved with all things together and, though we have been given the strength to impart our will over them, we must realize that they are our equals. Our proper role is to guide to fruition, not rule by force. The tides and rhythms of nature have directed our development from time immemorial and remain the sages of this planet. We are but minions to them.
What we choose not to do is as powerful and everlasting as that which we choose to do. Action and refrain, movement and stillness. These are the dances and dynamics with which the superior mind engages the world. Just as a chinese painting utilizes negative space as an integral part of creating a whole of beauty, so also must we exercise our ability for experiencing emptiness in order to become whole as a people. The possession and use of such abilities, or lack thereof, reveals the nature and integrity of the persons and cultures that wield them. What truth of us do we wish our bones and artifacts to tell when our history is unearthed in a remote archeological dig? What statements shall we make of ourselves now in our muteness then?
The wisdom of the sage is not held within our intellect or brain. Rather, it belongs to the essence that flows in our veins, circulates between every cell in our bodies, and delivers the life force to every one of our billions of individual nuclei. It is our physical and spiritual wellspring. We literally bathe in its knowledge.
This wisdom belongs to the feminine, just as structure and form belong to the masculine. The masculine element, the tangible and constructive, is expressed in the physical cells of our bodies. The feminine element, the intangible and ethereal, is expressed in the flow of fluids in and around those cells. While the male imparts the seed that sparks the growth, it is the female alone that holds within her the capacity for complexity, change and maturity. Through her womb and her milk, she imparts the nectars of the mysteries of the universe. This is her domain and over it she is sovereign.
Through his structure, the masculine manifests the forms within which the divine feminine develops and expresses herself. He creates the pillars and stone, the girders and chairs within and upon which the priestess/empress reveals her spiritual wisdom. The breath of her knowledge whispers through the hallways, temples and kitchens in which she abides. He builds the hearth and home and sacred bathhouses around and within which the community and family gather. The realm of the physical manifestation of the divine feminine is his domain and within it he serves as emperor/priest.
When in balance, the masculine and feminine consummate an equal, cosmic marriage that leads both and their progeny into higher mind.
Unfortunately, our current, conventional form of social, political and economic organization long ago became grossly imbalanced toward supremacy of the masculine. It has overflowed its own cup and now overruns all around it. Action upon action upon action without refrain belongs to the cognitive, emotional and spiritual capabilities of the child or the demented or the feverishly ill. What disease of the heart, mind and spirit man has succumbed to, I do not know. What should be obvious, however, is that it has destroyed their capacity for reason. What should be obvious, is that this disease has become so insidiously entrenched in our patriarchal religious orders, government and educational institutions, and business practices of raping our lands and women and children for profit, that we have made ourselves profane. Without our ever grasping the manner and speed of our descent, we have managed to sink below the surface of our own polluted seas. The scenery through which we have travelled in our gravitational fall from grace with each other has passed us by in the blur of misguided, quantum leaping toward “advancements.” We have also become dangerously blind to the fact that such spiritual illness and debauchery imperils our very survival. It seems that men are willing to starve the flesh and spirit of their own children, not realizing that, in so doing, they will reduce their own selves to dust and bones.
In the end, the solution is simple. Cut away the trillions of words used to intellectualize all sorts of justifications for our horrendous behaviors upon the planet (shared by both males and females alike, as she has succumbed to the disease as well), and the way is clear.
Women need to stand up and take their rightful roles in places of power, guided by our ancestral laws of compassion and justice, and men must put down their swords of oppression, usury and violence in service to their idols of profit and domination.
It is a time to bathe, cleanse and make ourselves sacred again in healing waters. It is a time to re-consecrate and renew once again our ancient marriage. It is a marriage we once knew, once lost and must once again come to know. It is a marriage founded on equal, compassionate and respectful warriorship. We must rediscover our true identities with each other. The bones and the flesh, the physical and the spiritual, the masculine and the feminine, must come into balance with each other again if the human species is to survive and, perhaps, in the most hopeful scenario, realize its full potential.
This union and balance exists in nature already. It always has and always will, despite us and without us if need be. The understanding of it cannot be received through books or intellectual discussion. It can only be imparted to us viscerally, when we allow ourselves to be carried on its aesthetic and etheric currents. It is the cosmic dream that flows inexorably in the background of our consciousness. It murmurs to us on the whispers of waves and in the babbling of streams and through the drumming of rain on our rooftops. The drops are the containers through which the music of the waters is delivered to us. It is heard even in the screaming of the teapot on the stove. The container holds and supports the spirit pushing its way towards life. When we allow the rhythms of nature to instruct us, structure and spirit embrace and entwine as one.
The original taoist texts tell us: remember the yang, but abide in the yin. This means to recognize and honor the individual (masculine), but always stay within and be guided by the universal ebb and flow of the primordial (feminine). Wu chi (the one) becomes tai chi (the two) and these give birth to the 10,000 things. We do, indeed, hold within us individually, dyadicly and collectively, the power of that birth.
The bones are left behind, the flesh dissolves into the womb of the universe. Cradle the bones in your hand, but see through to the ethereal essence that gave them life. In the bones we find the I, in the spirit we find the We. Out of these we give birth to the Us.
© 2010 Amelia A. Free