Covenant of the Goddess member Peter Dybing, who was on the ground providing emergency services in Haiti in the aftermath of their earthquake, has been working for the US Fish & Wildlife Service Incident Command Team in the Gulf for the past 50 days. He has sent me a message about his thoughts and experiences, and I’d like to share it with you here in its entirety.
Walk The Talk
From the Rockies to the great heart of America each drop of rain starts it journey toward the peace that only the vast waters of the Gulf can grant. Today, however the gathering of waters is met with ecological disaster on an unimaginable scale. These waters, Gaia’s womb of life in our hemisphere, are fouled by arrogance, greed and mankind’s endless thirst for fossil fuels. Many pontificate on who is to blame, ignoring their own participation in this insult to the Goddess.
Instead let’s examine our use of resources: recognizing that these are gifts of the earth, do we hold sacred these exchanges or participate in the ever-growing arrogance of consumption? Do we sanctify our use of fuel, food and resources or revel in unabashed self-indulgence? In seeking justice for this wound inflicted on Mother Earth, will we first look to ourselves, our Pagan community? Have we matured sufficiently to seek first our own responsibility?
After 50 days working for the US Fish & Wildlife Service Incident Command Team in the Gulf these are the questions I asked of myself. In some ways my efforts to save wildlife helped my spirit keep peace with the Great Mother, yet my own answers to these uncomfortable questions left me unable to ignore my own culpability. Suddenly I was mindful that as a witness, responder and perpetrator of this event, life couldn’t continue as it was.
Each day we fight the great patterns of our planet, when it is cold, we burn fuels to warm our homes beyond what is necessary. When it is dark we light every nook and cranny. When it is hot we consume electricity to cool our homes. We who profess to worship Mother Earth are not unaccountable for the grieves injury recently inflicted upon her.
None of this is stated to imply that our community does not lead in promoting responsible use of resources, we do. Yet, for most of us, western life overwhelms our desire to do that which we know is right. It is seeing this in myself that drives me to call on our community to redouble our efforts to protect that which is sacred to us. Before we lay our sights on others, should we not first gaze upon ourselves in the fullness of insight that this disaster has produced?
This is a call for us to examine how fully our collective magik can be realized if we have not added to our intention our own changes in behavior. Today, will we take an action that will reduce our use of energy? On an ongoing basis let’s commit to be mindful of our energy use choices.
Pagan sisters and brothers, join me in an effort to further the healing of our mother through direct action that starts in our homes, covens and communities.
Federal Incident Management Team Member
As this crisis in the Gulf unfolds, as more sacred bodies of water are found to be too polluted for human interaction, will our communities be able to provide leadership on this issue? Can we lead the way in the sort of direct and personal action Dybing calls for? What role do you think the Pagan community should take in the aftermath of these events?