Weird Weather, Tail Feathers and Finding Your Rhythm

Good day sweet ripplers,

Another blessed day to navigate…these are often the first words I write as I wake and greet the new day with a hot gourd of tea on a lil wooden stool in our lush late rain-fed garden. As always there is much to share, celebrate and engage in. Together we had another huge success with the 350 Challenge both locally and nationally, our Bee Tour was abuzz and we have some grand June activities for you to partake in from Backyard Chickens tohandcrafted paints and developing the personal leadership skills to cultivate an inspired life. AND Daily Acts is excited to announce a job opening, so we can better serve you inspired ripplers!

Of course with this weird weather from tornadoes to late rains and record Sierra snowpack, we need some extra special skills and support to navigate our rapidly changing world. While I was giddy with glee over our booming harvest of raspberries, strawberries and guomi berries (a very cool nitrogen-fixing bush) and topping up our rain tank on June 4th, the record late snowfall is cause for huge concern of flooding and related issues as summer heats up. At the Climate Protection Conference a couple of weeks ago, expert scientists showed the significant weather changes to come in future decades and the need to prepare and adapt. Connecting the dots between locally erratic weather events around the globe, Bill McKibben powerfully speaks to the increasingly drastic weather that is becoming the norm as we change the climate chemistry of our planet. All of which only more powerfully affirms the incredible importance of growing our lives and communities more locally self-reliant by building the skills, models and relationships to increase our community resilience. Every thing we do to use less and grow, share and inspire more builds our momentum and awareness and fuels further positive action.

Hawks are one of my allies, often showing up when I’m in need of support or a sign. They are associated with vision, spirit and healing. Change can be difficult, especially when there is so much occurring from personal to planetary and with our economy, ecosystems and everything else trying to find equilibrium. On a recent trip to the beautiful ridge-top land at Pepperwood Preserve, Lisa Micheli and I were walking, talking climate adaptation and leadership and she reached down, picked up a reddish feather and handed it to me. As we walked, a red tail hawk called out as it circled above us. Hawks receive their tail feathers as a sign of maturation, symbolizing the power and energy of maturity.

What does it mean to receive our tail feathers in this time? It means both big collaborative action and more intimate affairs, like homegrown meals, homemade music and household projects. It means sufficient time to tend the small but essential self at the heart of all this transformation. “Change begins at home” as I was recently reminded by Urban Homesteading author Erik Knutzen over a tasty homegrown meal at the Mackey’s homestead. And homegrown change is taking the front page. The next day Erik, his wife and their new book were featured in the NY Times. Our own Rachel Kaplan’s new Urban Homesteading book, full of Daily Actors and images of our actions and gardens is flying off the shelves. Yes there are many big challenges, and still, everywhere there are bright and shining and tasty glimpses of the world being born. I am blown away by the rapid emergence of so many inspiring solutions at all scales from backyard feather revolutions to municipal megawatts powered by chicken poo.

When I look around, I see our leaders and movement maturing and coming into our power. Learning to hold the awareness of how quickly things are changing and our need to prepare, adapt and rapidly reconnect nature and community. And still, change begins at home, with each of us, in our families and homes. That's where we find our rhythm, in taking the time to tend life and that small but essential self at the heart of it all.


Originally posted at Daily Acts. Trathen Heckman is a regular blogger for Transiton US and we are also lucky to have him on the TUS Board.

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