Earth Spirit: Confronting the Crisis
Living the wisdom of restorative Earth Spirituality.
Living the wisdom of restorative Earth Spirituality.
Living the wisdom of restorative Earth Spirituality.
Environmental conservation & protection, Gaia & earth energies, Mindfulness & meditation
If the human species has an evolutionary purpose that purpose is delight. Aren’t we constituted to experience and express conscious delight in the immensity and intimacy of creation, the diversity, abundance, and miracles of life? We have moved far from such purpose. Instead of imagination’s dreamers with the Earth, maturing into avatars of relationships, narrators of wonder, we are now a clear and present danger to all species. How do we change identity, direction, and move toward a future inclusive of Earth stability and Human responsibility?
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EARTH SPIRIT: CONFRONTING the CRISIS Essays and Meditations on Eco-Spirituality by David Sparenberg IN SEARCH OF ECOSOPHY This wide and deep collection of essays and meditations on the current earth crisis (which Sparenberg addresses from an eclectic perspective of eco-spirituality) is nothing less than an invitation to transform our lives through changing our perceptions. Via the thoughts and writings of a diversity of people and peoples, from Camus, Blake, Einstein, Parzival, Arne Naess, Thomas Berry, Robert Bly and spiritual traditions from First Nation teachings, through Zoroastrianism, Taoism, Shintoism and Gaia theory, the author explores what this might mean. Two threads run through the whole, which seem to me to summarise what Sparenberg is preoccupied with. The first rather beautiful passage begins in relation to the tree, but in the author’s hands this broadens out to include anyone or anything we encounter: ‘A tree is a presence. It has its own laws. A tree abides in its tree-ness, in its tree reality. Also, every tree has a context making life possible. The question I ask myself is what is the nature of my response to the presence of the tree? Is my response an act of beauty, a way of singing the world of this tree-particular? Or is it a reduction of tree presence to an object to be viewed or ignored, used, or eventually destroyed?’ The other is a description of the current situation in which spirit, or God/Goddess, is exiled because ‘this old Earth is soaked in the blood of injustice, disrespect, disregard and oppression.’ And yet it is the resultant broken heart that can be our redemption: ‘[this] can be the beginning of redirecting and redefining change’. I describe this book as a collection of essays and meditations. Actually, it doesn’t fall easily into such narrow categories. It is an unfolding of ideas that segue fluidly one into the other, stitched together by passages that are almost ‘speaking in tongues’ revelatory. Its closing lines take us back to the beginning: ‘If you want to learn the way of the shaman, druid, alchemist, or sage, study the art of a tree. If you wish to experience the ecstasy of unknowing, go down to the ocean or recline in grass, with eyes upward, reflecting noiselessly on a starry sky in a cosmic night. If you desire to feel the sacred blessing of beauty without preparing to depart for the world hereafter, be at ease: look on a mother and child.’ This is a book that contributes something important to the emergent field of ecosophy and will invite rereading. ~~~ Roselle Angwin, writer, poet, mythologian and retreat leader, author of Riding the Dragon – myth & the inner journey, and A Spell in the Forest – tongues in trees. ~ Roselle Argwin, Moon Books Author
"Profoundly insightful, and essential in its message and many crucial questions, Confronting the Crisis is a work of transformative art. I took reading it to heart, as taking responsibility for our actions and making amends with the land, the Earth as a Sacred Being, is at the center of my own practice and teachings. I wholeheartedly agree that our connection to Gaia must be fundamentally understood, nurtured, and acted upon. Thank you for this beautiful work. A meditation in itself." Mahayana I. Dugast Ph.D. ~ Dr. Mahayana Dugast, Mahayana I. Dugast, author
Confronting the Crisis March 24, 2022 Indie Shaman - David Sparenberg, Earth Spirit, Moon Books David Sparenberg’s Confronting the Crisis: Essays and Meditations on Eco-Spirituality, the second title in the new Earth Spirit series from Moon Books, is a kind of hybrid work that incorporates in two parts critical essays and personal meditations that examine climate change and ecological instability with an eye toward the human values that have been threatened and endangered. And a search for re-establishing connectedness for a recovery of those same human values, not the least of which is a poetic sensibility for the living, sacred Earth. Sparenberg’s is a passionate and felt critique, interwoven with a sense of mourning bordering on outrage at the destruction of the ecological integrity and stability of the Earth, together with a sense of urgency to regain ground through a reengagement with modes of living and being that are not simply “eco-friendly” but indeed “Eco-Dharma”, as one of his poetic meditations describes it. Confronting the Crisis is a book informed by Romantic poetry, Gestalt psychology and phenomenological philosophy – all of which share concern with an intimate and lived reciprocity with the human community and the animate Earth. “If you want to learn the way of the shaman, druid, alchemist or sage, study the art of a tree,” Sparenberg writes. It is a simple statement but infused with profound insight and wisdom, much of which Sparenberg draws from and weaves throughout this thoughtful and heartfelt book. The art of a tree is an ancient Earth intelligence that is ours to examine and ours to imitate, in the best shamanic spirit. Difficult and complex as the crisis doubtless is, books like Sparenberg’s offer perspective that at least hold potential to restore hope in the face of troubling realities. The shamanic spirit has at no point in human history been needed more. Recommended reading for those seeking the same. Book Details: David Sparenberg. Earth Spirit. Confronting the Crisis. Moon Books (29 October 2021). ISBN 978-1789049732. Review Details: Confronting the Crisis: Essays and Meditations on Eco-Spirituality was reviewed by Christopher Greiner for Indie Shaman magazine and this review was published in Issue 51. ~ Christopher Greiner, INDIE SHAMAN Magazine, 24 March 2022, Spring issue # 51
Profoundly insightful, and essential in its message and many crucial questions, Confronting the Crisis is a work of transformative art. I took reading it to heart, as taking responsibility for our actions and making amends with the land, the Earth as a Sacred Being, is at the center of my own practice and teachings. I wholeheartedly agree that our connection to Gaia must be fundamentally understood, nurtured, and acted upon. Thank you for this beautiful work. A meditation in itself. ~ Mahayana I. Dugast Ph.D.
David Sparenberg’s EARTH SPIRIT: CONFRONTING THE CRISIS is an invaluable wisdom book. Divided equally between its two parts, the 11 essays in part one explore this relevant and timely subject from different angles and in various forms. Inclined towards posing deep questions, David Sparenberg inspires and invites the reader to dialogue and find their own answers and solutions. It is with the 20 inspirational meditations of part two, however, that we are invited to experience the full eloquence, spiritual power and deep wisdom of the author. David Sparenberg is a dreamer in the shamanic tradition of pathfinders and an eco-poet in heart and soul, which shows throughout the book as he envisions approaches to our collectively creating a culture where humans mature into avatars of relationships. While honestly addressing subjects of challenge and urgency, Sparenberg invites us to democratize alternative forms of education, culture and communities based on responsibility, appreciation and diversity delight. Frequently he asks the reader to listen more intently, feel more deeply, awaken their senses to think anew, and unite with others making choices working toward sustainable change. David Sparenberg, who is a dogma-free seeker and latter day eco-spirituality troubadour, believes that instead of facing species extinction, with dedication, imagination, and discipline we can enter a values renaissance for the combined future of Earth and Humanity. Christa Mackinnon (MSc) Author of: Shamanism and Spirituality in Therapeutic Practice, Jessica Kingsley Publisher, London & Philadelphia Shamanism: Awaken and Develop The Shamanic Force Within, Hay House Ltd, London, Carlsbad & International ~ Christa Mackinnon, Christa Mackinnon, author
David Sparenberg writes about the collective crisis the earth is facing which may lead to the end of our species and most other species on earth. He says that we human species are at war with nature. This is a recipe for collective doom. However, his writings are not all gloom and doom. He draws upon the collective spirituality of human civilization to find solutions to the quagmire we are in. He invites us to dialogue and prompts us to seek counter-solutions. These counter-solutions may be found in the wisdom of our ancestors which are now cherished by our indigenous brethren. Seeking, discussing and practicing indigenous spirituality will give us clue to a new path towards a new beginning, a beginning which will lead us towards a new horizon of peace, justice and harmony which will regenerate our civilization and solve most of our problems. David Sparenberg's writings are meditative and poetic. Reading his articles lift us to a new realm of hope. In a world where there is so much gloom and doom the hope that Sparenberg's articles impart is something to be cherished. ~ Binu Matthew, Countercurrents.org
During these difficult times of turbulence we need more than ever a voice of hope and guidance, a voice of awareness and spirituality. David Sparenberg is exactly that; a voice of healing, of consciousness, of hope, of ecosophy, of friendship. And he has been all that and more for the last twelve years at least, for me, for Ovi magazine, for the Ovi magazine’s readers. So, read his book and let his healing humanitarian touch reach you. Thanos Kalamidas Editor in Chief Ovi magazine & Ovi project ~ Thanos Kalamidas, editor/publisher, OVI Magazine/OVI Books
A thought provoking selection on a variety of themes relating to the current Earth Crisis, written in a heartfelt and frequently poetic prose, David Sparenberg’s essays are inspired by an eclectic range of sources and his meditations are a journey in themselves. Eco-Spirituality is, justifiably and necessarily, a popular topic right now: we are at a crossroads where a choice of direction can be made. Earth Spirit: Confronting the Crisis embraces hope and shines a light to inspire and empower us along the right path. June Kent, Editor, Indie Shaman ~ June Kent, INDIE SHAMAN