"Joanna Macy writes that until we can grieve for our planet we cannot love it -- grieving is a sign of spiritual health. But it is not enough to weep for our lost landscapes; we have to put our hands in the earth to make ourselves whole again. Even a wounded world is feeding us. Even a wounded world holds us, giving us moments of wonder and joy. I choose joy over despair."
- Robin Wall Kimmerer (Braiding Sweetgrass)
I first read Dr. Kimmerer's fine book, Braiding Sweetgrass, two years ago. Since then, my copy has been passed around to friends, and only just returned to me last week. I took the book up to the studio, intending to slip it back onto the shelf (next to her previous book on moss), but I started to re-read it instead...and I'm finding it more insightful than ever now that the Windigo (as she describes the legend) stalks boldly through government halls on both sides of the Atlantic.
My reading recommendations today reach back to the Braiding Sweetgrass posts from two years ago. Here's Dr. Kimmerer on The Windigo: what it is and, importantly, how to defeat it. You can also read her thoughts on knowing the world as a gift, on homemade ceremonies, and on the democracy of species -- and listen to her speak on "Intelligence in all Kinds of Life" on American public radio.
And, of course, I highly recommend the book itself to those who haven't read it yet: Braiding Sweetgrass: