In our cities, in our towns, on our farms, fire is destruction of what we have worked to create. There is no safe space in which its power can flow. In the wild, fire is a gateway to creation. Forest fire sweeps through destroying dead wood, releasing seeds, opening up a pathway of fresh soil and sun for new growth and wild flowers to emerge. In the wild, destruction and creation do not oppose each other but dance together in expanse before them.
Above a wild flower grows next to a burnt stump in the Bitterroot Valley of Montana. Photo by John Laux.
Learn More: The Glacier National Park site has information about the challenges and benefits of forest fires.
Reflection Questions: What do I do out of habit? Does it really serve me and my flow of creativity and power? How do I feel about letting this go? What new growth could come forth if this was released?
Contemplative Practice – Practice letting go and making room: Clean out a corner, a drawer, an attic space. If possible, you may want to (safely!) burn something (small) as a ritual action to support your cleaning out to make space for the new. Select something that is useful, in good condition, and that you don’t particularly want to let go of. Donate this valuable item to someplace where it can make a difference for someone: a homeless or battered woman’s shelter, a friend in need, or a community center, for example.
Nature awareness: Select a forest (near or far) and try to find out something about its relationship to fire. Walk and look for evidence of fire.