28 Nov Eco Plots and Family
Cristobell my couch surfing host invited me to come to his plot here in Santiago. This is a community garden where people are able to go on a list to be given a plot. It is similar to the plots in England although slightly smaller allotments. I met his brother and his friend, also his sister came with us. So we drove up towards the magnificent Andes. They amaze me how they tower over Santiago. Cristobell says I am lucky to see them as the pollution gets so bad here they simply disappear.
I really liked the gardens. There was also a little eco faire with organic vegetables and handicrafts. I walked with his sister Sandra who doesn´t speak English and I don´t speak Spanish. I feel pretty relaxed about it and slowly she is understanding me. We human´s are pretty smart. We just point at things and smile. We walked back to the plot and I watched Cristobell houghing some soil to plant some plants. He gave me a little task of planting. I was keen to get my hands in the soil. This will be my work next year connecting with the environment, getting my hands dirty and learning how nature functions. Anyay I put in a cluster of plants and Cristobell says, you plant them individually. I just gave a broad smile and said just assume the Dummies Guide to Planting with me. His brother came back with a nice vegetarian pastry and I chomped into that happily. I was shown the plot next door. Apparently the gardener has made a mandala and believes plants grow better. I felt instantly a connection with that and wanted to get closer and have a look. I told Cristobell about Bill Mollison´s Permaculture that he has shared across the world. He is an Australian Scientist who worked for the Commonwealth Scientific, Industrial and Research Organisation (CSIRO). After he left there he used to spend hours in the forest just observing how nature works. I find I am similar, I am fascinated by the processes and the sheer beauty and engineering of nature. I told my former husband once, if you want to be a brillient engineer, study nature. There is no greater engineer. Look at the miracle of life, structure and function emerging from a seed. Look at the miracle of thousands of tons of water carried by a cloud, if we didn´t have evidence every time we looked up we would definitely say it is impossible.
The mandala also raised ideas around energy centres on the planet. I am on a world trip and have been visiting sacred sites in the Orkney Islands, Scotland, Newgrange in Ireland, and did see Stonehenge, Avebury (former trip), visited the pyramids in Egypt, Mexico, Guatemala and Peru. I definitely felt energy, for me Chechin itza in Mexico was the place I felt it intensely, so much so I cried with a feeling of I know this place. So for me the concept of energy centres is not inconceivable. The mandela´s are symmetrical patterns that have balance inherent in the design. Carl Jung the Swiss Psychoanalyst talked about symbols in dreams. The circle was a symbol of wholeness. The Mandala is evident in Celtic spirituality, Sanskrit, Buddhism etc and creates a sacred space. Sacred spaces are places of a certain quality of energy that is why using a mandala could enhance the energy of planting food. Food for thought there haha.
So I went around the place walking and observing. I had my camera and took close ups of plants to study later. They are so intricate and creative when you really look to see. You can notice the infinite detail and I am sure every colour and shape has a purpose n the natural system. We just see a pretty flower, but it is coloured to attract certain insects, its shape will filter wind or capture sun, all is functional, adaptable and sustainble. These three elements are the core of the natural sytems. This is the intelligence of the system. It is not rigid and unchanging and neither are we.
I stopped for a cup of tea, the guy running the shop was so kind to me. I find Latin American people so friendly. He made me a nice tea. Then Cristobell´s sister rounded the corner and sat with me for a time. It is not easy when their is a language barrier but I admire her being with it. She is a doctor and I am going to see if I can clown at her community centre. So working on shifting this cold. Anyway, we had tea and drinks and then looked at the handicrafts. We walked into one shop and saw a bag made out of bottle ring pulls. It was really beautifully done. I did take a picture which I will upload tomorrow. There was clay pottery, mosaics, lama wool clothing and various other handicrafts. It is interesting how the natural garden attracts artisans, they go hand in hand with community. I walked briefly with an older lady and she didn´t speak english but we conveyed to each other the importance of the allotment, I said this is the future.
I bumped into Cristobell and he said they were having coffee. So I came along and saw his mother, grandmother, step sister, sister etc. It was really nice to see the family. They bought me a nice fruit drink. Cristobell explained to me southern Chile as quite cold and rainy. If you look at the map of South America, you can see there is not much distance between the southern most tip and Antarctica. I actually took heaps of photos of world maps the other day, i find the planet fascinating. I will upload those as well. I also talked to Cristobell about doing maybe a laughter workshop, should be a coughing workshop, maybe I´ll turn my cough into a joke, which it is. His father is a doctor at a hospital, I thought maybe I could work with staff there. So will see what happens.
We went back to Cristobell´s mum´s place for lunch with his brother and grandmother. I went to the toilet and looked in a pocket of my bag. I had a small angel Archangel Michael in there. I had bought it to a friend who said she saw this angel. I also am aware the angelic regime is not myth, they do exist and they are light beings. So I suddenly got the feeling to give it to his mother. Archangel Michael is symbolic for cutting past conflict or anger towards people. He is viewed as a protector. Now lets say for argument sake that I am wrong there is no archangel, it doesn´t matter if you accept the notion that all thought is creative, what you believe you create. That is why miracles have happened because people believe. The power of faith is really the power of thought. Look around you thoughts created all of it. So it is worth considering expanding our beliefs into the areas of miracle, and wallah something happens. It has in my life I was given $7,500 to go to Russia with Patch Adams. I had a feeling to contact a woman I clowned with once, I said don´t give the money to me, just bridging finance, a loan. She turns around and her and her mother-in-law give it to me. How beautiful are people. I knew before I received the money I was going to Russia, felt it. So it is this type of awareness that informs you there is more than just linear time at play here. Anyway, back to the toilet (nice thought huh). So I felt to give it. Cristobell and his mum sat at the table, I asked him to translate. I said I felt inspired to give her this angel. She was very touched. I explained to Cristobell I am not trying to please her I felt to give it, I feel this angel is around her. I found out later she had 10 years of sorrow and this angel is about forgiving the past and cutting the chords of anger etc. So on reflection later I could see the importance of this symbol. She had a large quartz crystal on the table. I asked her to put it there. She acknowledged she was spiritual but didn´t follow religion. So it was appropriate to give. I am trusting my inner feeling on this. I could be seen as a mystic but I am not worrying too much about that. Just act on what you feel, don´t worry about judgement. At the end of the day it brought joy to her and that is all I care about. We had a lovely lunch then headed back to Cristobell´s.
I tried to have a rest as my sleeping pattern seems to be all over the place. I started thinking about juggling and got excited. I pulled myself off the bed and put on the ipod and went outside. I pulled out my juggling balls, rings and clubs and had a good juggle. I really love it. I do need to practice, my hands sometimes grip to lightly and I drop the balls. I do need to keep the practice up as you can loose a bit of coordination and skill, if it lapses. I do love it though and thought I must be getting better if I am juggling. I can feel I will clown next week. Yippee. It will be great. I am hoping I might be able to go to a shanty town. I am told there are drug people there and it is dangerous, but my theory is when surrounded by love I´ll be fine. I find that people do respond positively, doesn´t matter who they are, we are all similar. I told Cristobell, let´s experiment and see if the clown brings people together. So if it is meant to happen it will, if not I am sure another opportunity will arise.
Cristobell shared with me family problems and I reflected on how many families are suffering breakups. My own family broke up when my parents split, i was around 18 at the time. It was never the same again. Families in a lot of ways are very fragile but I do feel conflict resolution needs to be widely taught so people can learn to communicate. I forgot to mention at this lunch I spoke with Cristobell´s brother a psychologist. He agreed with my take on love, no expectations of others and humour as ways to deal with conflict. I asked him what are the key problems that families and people in relationships face, he said communication. I actually knew that. It is the key to all our conflicts worldwide, we don´t really understand each other. These days we don´t spend enough time together to really know people, many become acquaintences. Even in marriage people keep up appearances so their partner will stay, such is the fear of aloneness. I myself embrace aloneness and prefer it these days. I am very sociable but love being alone to reflect. However many would consider that the worst outcome. Many men don´t stay unmarried for long. I would advice, get to know yourself and don´t expect others to fill the gap. Only you are responsible for your happiness, noone is going to make you happy. That is your job. What Cristobell´s brother said is that people are filled with prejudices and that they believe they are right. Very true, that is why these days I say I could be wrong. Then my mind opens to other possibilities. If you are a seeker of truth you will have to look at yourself, if you are deeply insecure and being right is all that matters, then you will do whatever you can to prove the other wrong. This is what breaks up relationships. Who was it to said ´to thine own self be true´ah yes, Shakespeare inspired by Socrates (little help from google there).
I´ll leave you with that to think through… much love or as they say in spain muchos amour