JULY & AUGUST The entire planet is heating up right now. Global warming is playing havoc with weather patterns, which in turn affects all plant and animal life. Our emotions are fired up and disagreements are reaching a boiling point, as is evidenced by the ever-increasing and escalating geo-religious-political-economic conflicts around the globe. Time out! […]
April is when we celebrate Mother Nature, Mother Earth and all Her creations and creatures. It is all about green growth and the April showers that nourishes it.
Earth and woman share a correspondence of function, a facility for creativity and abundance, a grounded worldly wisdom. Each is primary and potent. Each, a creatrix supreme, the giver of life and the sustainer, as well.
Herodotus wrote that all of the known names for the Earth were female. “Nature is our mother,” the Latin proverb proclaims. The Gypsies say, “The Earth is our mother. . .the secret of life comes from the ground.” Asase Ya is the Earth Mother of the African Ashanti. They tell, “We got everything from Asase Ya, food, water: we rest upon Her when we die.”
Humankind, in its infancy, clung to the primal comprehension of a maternal Earth, in the same way that any completely dependent child hangs onto her mother’s hip. The reality of our utter reliance incontrovertible, we held on for dear life. Until only five, six thousand years ago, the archetypal Great Mother, creatrix of all existence, matriarch of the races of god/desses, reigned supreme everywhere. Homer sang her praises, “I shall sing of Gaia, Universal Mother, firmly founded, Oldest of all the Holy Ones.”
Foremost in all early religions, She was personified and identified in many ways, but She was routinely regarded with reverence and deference as a living mother. Mother Earth, universally worshipped as the fertile, female provider, protector and parent, was always treated with great dignity and care. Cultivated fields were left to rest one year in seven lest they become worn out with the never ending work of producing food, and wars were routinely put on hold during the planting season.
Today, we have a global holiday in Her honor. Since 1971, Earth Day has been celebrated to remind the people of the world of the need for the continuing loving care, which is vital to Earth’s safety, and our own. The Vernal Equinox was originally chosen as the official date to honor MotherEarth, perfect for its symbolism — equilibrium and balance — in order to encourage and inspire a universal sense of interdependence, cooperation, and unity. Now we celebrate it on April 22, which has, heretofore, been Arbor Day.
On Earth Day the United Nations Peace Bell is rung to initiate a moment of global equipoise when people worldwide can join in a renewed heartfelt commitment to the protection and care of our imperiled planet. The United Nations Earth Day event is the centerpiece of an annual global holiday that strives to awaken a common objective of universal harmony with nature and neighbors.
The original Earth Day proclamation states, “All individuals and institutions have a mutual responsibility to act as Trustees of Earth, seeking the choices in ecology, economics and ethics that will eliminate pollution, poverty and violence, foster peaceful progress, awaken the wonder of life and realize the best potential for the future of the human adventure.”
From that first Earth Day 39 years ago, has come a growing consensus that every individual and institution should act as Earth Trustees, seeking what can be done in ecology, economics and ethics to benefit all people and the planet, Herself. The goal is to obtain a healthy, peaceful future and speed the day when bells will ring everywhere over the world as we all celebrate together Earth Day, the great day of peace, prosperity and cooperative spirit on Earth.
As gloriously idealistic as it is, one day is only a very modest beginning. Let one Earth Day inspire two, twenty, two hundred. Let every day be Earth Day.
Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She offers counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity. Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™
The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.