by Maya White Sparks, Priestess of Interfaith Nature Spirituality
What follows is one way of making sense of the political chaos, earth changes, and accelerating spiritual energies in our world and points to a good way of responding to it all.
Present times were foreseen in various religions, philosophical movements, and Indigenous prophetic traditions. For example, in Biblical prophecy, this era was described as the “Time of Revelation”; in Deep Ecology, as “The Great Turning”*; in Mayan Calendars, as a “cycle of great changes”**, and in Hopi prophecies***, as the “Closing of the 4th World and the Opening of the 5th.”
When I was a young woman in the 1970’s, I had visions that dramatic change was coming. Since then, my understanding of these visions has deepened by studying Nature Spirituality and by exploring the evolutionary potential of natural cycles. I am especially grateful to Native American teachers who not only have prophesied these times of transformation, but who have explained the reasons behind them. They also have described an “Ark” we can ride through them, so we can survive, thrive, and co-create together a new world of peace and harmony (see below).
Unbeknownst to me at the time, during the 1970’s, the Bear Tribe Medicine Society spread the message of the teacher, Sun Bear, who had a more detailed vision of coming Earth Changes. He asserted “…that the dominant society has created imbalances because of ignorance and irresponsibility.”* These imbalances must be healed and harmony restored through Earth Changes.
Sun Bear’s vision inspired a group of people to come together as The Bear Tribe, to “re-learn their proper relationship with the Earth Mother, the Great Spirit, and all [our] relations in the animal, mineral, plant, and human kingdoms.” They published The Bear Tribe’s Self Reliance Book (1977), with practical ideas for co-creating small, self-sustaining communities of like-minded individuals that would make it possible to survive such changes.
In the 1980’s, I was blessed to be present when the Medicine Man, Rolling Thunder spoke at Sevenoaks in Virginia. At that time, he predicted the coming of the “Cleansing Times”, when fire and water would purify the Mother Earth. I believe we have seen the beginning of this Cleansing in recent years.
“Blend with the Earth and Celebrate Life”
Recently I have learned that the visions and prophecies mentioned above echo the thousand year old prophecies and instructions preserved by Hopi Traditionalists. Thanks to a wise and fortuitous recommendation from a Comanche friend to read The Hopi Survival Kit (1997) by Thomas E. Mails, I discovered that an Earth Guardian, Maasaw, emissary of the Creator, interacted with the Hopi a Millennia ago. Maasaw not only foretold the closing of the current “4th World” of human civilization due to corruption and imbalance, but recommended ways of being that would help people live through a necessary purification. These balanced ways of living would actually mitigate the intensity of earth changes and cleansings necessary to heal and re-balance Earth Mother. The Hopi instructions recommend living in self-sustaining communities of like-minded people who “Blend with the Earth and celebrate life.”
The attitudes, feelings, and rhythms of a life of celebration and blending with the Earth comprises what Mails (with the permission of the Traditionalist Hopi Elders) called a “Spiritual Ark”–a way of being we need to get on board if we want to survive into the next Golden Age.
The Hopi Survival Kit also gives further, detailed instructions that I recommend readers study in depth. One instruction is to live “a simple life.” Living a simple life, close to the Earth, resulted in joyful, 100+ year lifespans among the Traditionalist Hopi Elders still alive in the 1990’s. The Hopi were able to accomplish this feat, despite the harsh oppression and disruptions brought about by the destructive intrusion of U.S. government into their lives.
Maasaw assured the Hopi that if they followed the instructions provided they would keep the balance on Mother Earth. The Elders taught that anyone who lives in these ways, no matter what her or his religion or skin color, helps keep and restore balance and thus lessens the need for extreme cleansings and/or changes!
“Celebrating life” involves attuning with the seasonal cycles of the year as one blends with the Land. For example, Summer, the coming of which we celebrate at the Summer Solstice here in the Northern Hemisphere, is the season for tending the plants. The plants in our gardens, “… newly born infants” that were birthed in the Spring, are now our growing children, facing “all the challenges of nature, wind, animals, and insects.” Caring for the plants also involves singing to them and working with the unseen beings who are part of the growing process.
Hopi ceremonies in summer include dramas with Kachinas who appear as clowns “to check if there are any corruptions.” To me, this represents their community’s effort to remind everyone that individual actions effect the larger community and are seen by others. In my mind, this advises us that a community needs to “reboot” regularly, to check for corruptions, and review the original template (a process I believe our world has now begun).
I have steadily grown within the supportive wombs of communities of like-minded people and today focus on co-creating earth-loving, life-affirming, egalitarian, and spiritually aware community. In my personal path of interfaith nature spirituality****, I recognize that the height of the sun’s energies bring people out into the world more, reinforcing our community connections and nurturing our individual and communal growth potential. But any time is a good time to think about the value of community, especially what some call “intentional communities” and to make plans, if so inspired, to co-create or board a Spiritual Ark, to blend with the Earth, and celebrate life in community, as we ride the through the Great Turning into a Golden Age of a healed Earth of Peace and Harmony.
There are many Intentional Communities thriving across our country! Many are open to new members and give tours. Check out: https://www.ic.org/community-bookstore/product/communities-directory-book-new-7th-edition/ Or start one! Or, connect with Spiral Grove to co-create a Center with living community!
*Macy, Joanna. “The Great Turning.”http://ecoliteracy.org June 29, 2009
**Nodjiwon, Kevin. “Mayan Time, Prophecy and the Tzolk’in in Mayan Timekeeper Gerardo Barrios Kaanek’.” https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/mayan-time-prophecy-tzolkin-timekeeper-gerardo-barrios-kevin-nadjiwon December 10, 2017
***Mails, Thomas E. (1997) The Hopi Survival Kit. NY: Stewart, Tabori & Chang.
see also, http://traditionalhopi.org and I ask non-native friends to please consider doing what you can to right the wrongs of our government against the native peoples of our continent.
Sun Bear, Wabun, and Nimimosha. (1977) The Bear Tribe’s Self Reliance Book. Spokane Washington: Bear Tribe Publishing.
****Spiral Grove, An Interpath Community of Nature Spirituality. http://www.thespiralgrove.org We don’t yet have our own land, but we do celebrate together regularly and do our best to blend with the earth and create community. New folks are welcome.
Starhawk (2011). The Empowerment Manual: A Guide for Collaborative Groups. Canada: New Society Publishers.
An ordained Priestess since 1990, Maya White Sparks is available for phone tarot card readings and guided meditations/trancework for sliding scale and barter, no one turned away for lack of funds (email inquiries to: firstname.lastname@example.org). She has been reading cards for over 30 years and has been certified in Hypnotherapy and as a Natural Health Practitioner. Her CD, MEDITATIONS with Maya, Sound Dimension by Cheryl Jacobs is available at http://CDBABY.COM and http://iTunes.com