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November 6, 2014 Full Moon Newsletter: Suffering, Grief and HOPE
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November 6, 2014 Full Moon Newsletter
Suffering, Grief and HOPE


Dear <<First Name>>,


I am stunned by the beauty of this land, the Earth and sky here in northern New Mexico, the morning sun on the bark and leaves of the cottonwoods, elms, apricots and aspens with their golden glow as fall turns to winter. A sudden explosion of hundreds of birds chirping in a glorious chorus calls me outside to pay my respects. Robins, ravens, flickers, and countless other smaller ones, flitting and flying overhead into the tall trees…such a joy to behold!
 
Meanwhile my heart is heavy with the constant awareness of our friends in Liberia who are living with Ebola breathing down their necks. Every day they witness unbearable suffering and yet they remain grounded in equanimity. They tell us about dead bodies in the streets where they go to raise awareness, about pregnant women who are turned away from hospitals and must give birth on the grounds outside, of government and health care systems coming apart under the circumstances – and of the chaos, confusion and fear governing the people instead.
 
Harper and Bethelson’s dedication is a daily inspiration to us here at home as they tell us how they are bringing the practice of mindfulness to meet Ebola – in neighborhoods no else seems to care about, on their weekly radio program where more and more people are calling in to thank and encourage them, and in the Peace Huts they have built across Liberia. Just a few days ago, Harper and Bethelson shared with us about their recent interviews with Ebola survivors, and their plans to address the trauma that survivors are experiencing and to weave them in to the community of mindfulness that is steadily growing.
Ebola Awareness Team in Monrovia
1. (Image at top) The Ebola Awareness Team coordinated by Bethelson, includes from left: Bethelson, Bill Posiah, F. Garlemah Karmon, Harper Karmon, Bishop Grant.  2. (Image lower left) Harper, Bethelson, and the grateful Iman of a mosque in Jacob Town community.  3. (Image lower right) Bethelson making public announcements about Ebola awareness in the St. Paul Bridge area. Images courtesy of Harper Karmon.
We are humbled by Harper and Bethelson's great example of compassion in action, of bravery, practicality, and acceptance in the face of two great teachers – death and impermanence.
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This month’s full moon meditation will be held on Thursday November 6th at 7:00 pm at Open Way Sangha in Chupadero.
Join us in meditation from wherever you are on the full moon. Let us know if you’d like a copy of the guided meditation to deepen your practice alone or with others. And if you plan to come in person, please RSVP to this email and bring a dish or a drink to share with the community after the meditation. Our gratitude in advance for your offering of generosity into the basket that will be passed to help sustain our Sangha.
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Much is being shared about the New Stories Summit in Findhorn, Scotland, and I encourage you to check it out. I was particularly moved to meet Kahontineh Swamp, the daughter of the late Jake Swamp, a Mohawk elder. She shared with us that before he passed away, he requested that a Grief Ceremony be performed for indigenous and non-indigenous alike. She offered us this ceremony at Findhorn.
Panel of Indigenous elders and storytellers on Ancient Wisdom/New Consciousness included: Kalani Souza (Hawaii), Gigi Coyle (US), Satish Kumar (UK/India), Visolela Rosa Namises (Namibia), Cynthia Jurs (US), Vickie Downey (Tewa, US), Kahontineh Swamp (Mohawk, US), Pat McCabe (Dine, US), Shaun Nannup (Australia), Pracha Hutanuwatr (Thailand).
Image courtesy of Drew Dellinger.
This ceremony helped me personally to grieve the sorrows of these times, and it released tremendous joy for the possibilities on the horizon. After traveling all around the world with the Earth Treasure Vases (ETVs), I live with a sadness inside that sometimes seems untouchable – even if I have also witnessed many miracles and powerful signs of Big Change.
 
Acknowledging what we have done to each other and to our Mother Earth and grieving collectively is a necessary step so that we can move on together. It was an honor to share in this ritual which catalyzed an empowering release of all that we hold inside and keep quiet. I sense this ceremony is rippling out widely, affecting the subtle realms as all rituals do. From there, a new story is already being told.
I was inspired by the global community that gathered for the summit and I see that one of next steps for us here at Alliance for the Earth is to turn our attention more directly to being a vessel for awakened community right here at home. This beautiful land can become a watering hole for a global tribe of storytellers, healers and visionary stewards of life on Earth who are allied with us in service to Mother Earth through the ETV practice.
ETV on the main altar created by Craig Gibsone at Findhorn New Stories Summit.
Findhorn has become a new hub in the ETV mandala. One of the next generation vases was brought to this gathering and filled with heartfelt prayers and offerings in three ceremonies during the time of the Summit. Happily, two of Findhorn’s elders have accepted responsibility to steward this vase to its completion. Craig Gibsone and Durten Lau will oversee the ceremonies with the vase over each full moon and the burial in the original garden at Findhorn.
 
Another dimension of the story of this ETV came through Shay Sloan, a long-time friend, who during the summit brought all of our attention to an unhealed wound that we now have a chance to address with our prayers for that vase. This is an area where “witches” – the healers and medicine people of an earlier time – were tortured and burned. This deep wound in our collective history is asking to be healed and our humble vessel has taken on the task!
 
Please share your prayers for this healing to be accomplished and for a new story to take root in the fabric of life on Earth – with Findhorn as the place to root these intentions. Go to our website to Make an Offering and we will make sure that your prayers are offered into the vase. Thank you.
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Back home, we are grateful to be forging a special relationship with Marian Naranjo of Santa Clara Pueblo, the founder of HOPE (Honor Our Pueblo Existence). We can see beautiful glimmers of hope in the work she is doing here in her homeland in northern New Mexico.
This inspiring short video by Brad Laughlin of CoreLight features our friend Marian Naranjo of Santa Clara Pueblo, Northern New Mexico, who speaks about how indigenous communities have been deeply affected by the creation of the atomic bomb at the National Laboratory that occupies their sacred lands, and about her work to restore important tribal lifeways.
Since the US government transformed Marian’s ancestral homelands seventy years ago into a top-secret army post, her people have witnessed the creation of the atomic bomb that ended World War II and began the Nuclear Age. For many years, Marian has worked tirelessly for nuclear safety and to stop nuclear waste contamination. Many of the Pueblo’s sacred sites have been lost due to the presence of the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the birthplace of the atomic bomb and linchpin of the nuclear weapons industry, which is built on a dormant super-volcano and has been threatened in recent years by raging wildfires. Marian is a visionary leader in bringing about needed shifts in consciousness for the restoration of her homeland.
Marian Naranjo with her daughter Emily at the Buwah Tewha.
To bring balance back to the land and local Indigenous communities, HOPE is dedicated to revitalizing a significant Pueblo life-way: the cooking and sharing of “Buwah”, a sustainable and highly nutritional food prepared through communal effort.
 
Thanks to volunteer hands-on labor and generous donations, a “Buwah Tewha,” or Women’s Bread House, is now being built. The first phase – an adobe room to house the cured stones for traditional cooking of the Buwah – will be completed very soon. Here, Pueblo women, the nurturers and backbone of the community, will be able to gather with women and girls and empower them through learning the art of cooking the Buwah – and reclaim a vital cultural life-way for many generations to come at this time when so much is being lost.
AE's David Bacon and Elizabeth Christine working on the Buwah Tewha.
Alliance for the Earth invites you to join us in supporting the completion of the Buwah Tewha because we believe in the importance of what Marian is doing.
 
As the Earth’s old systems are dying, it is vital for new, sustainable ones to be birthed. We see the empowerment of women, the teaching of ancient Indigenous wisdom and the return to the laws of nature as three of the most vital aspects for the emergence of a new/old story.

Marian and HOPE are seeking funds to complete phases two and three—a kitchen and greenhouse. Any contribution large or small is welcome.
 
To donate to HOPE:
1. Visit
The Southwest Research and Information Center.
2. Click on the button in the upper right corner: Donate Now through Network for Good.
3. Type “HOPE” in the designation box.


Thank you for supporting Marian in her work for the Earth at this critical time. Your contribution will be directly helping to transform a community and bring life back to a land living too long in the shadow of the atomic age. As Marian says—It is time for change.
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Thank you for listening to these stories of grief, suffering and hope, beauty in the midst of it all.

As always, we send you much love and many blessings,
Cynthia and all of us at Alliance for the Earth

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