THE EAGLES FLEW OVER

THE EAGLES FLEW OVER

Two eagles soar over the little town of Wheeler. Down below the Nehalem River is swollen and muddy. In the distance is the roar of the ocean gone wild. Cars move slowly down 101; drivers looking straight ahead, do not see the eagles. Above the town are clear cut hills—except for one patch. This is where the eagles live. From there comes the sound of heavy equipment and trees falling. A few miles South, a hillside has been “condemned” because of mud slides. One could say it is in “recovery.”

Down below the eagles, a line of people a block long look up and cheer. They are holding signs that speak of their concern: “Do not clear cut the last remaining forest above Wheeler”; “Trees give us clean air”; “Trees hold the earth”; Forests give homes to the animals and birds”; “Toxic chemicals poison the earth, the water, the people”; “Clear cuts destroy the forest”…The people choose to believe that the eagles are blessing them as they stand here on this stormy day protesting a logging operation already underway in the forest where the eagles live. These are people who live and work here on the Oregon Coast in towns where the drinking water has been compromised, where the creeks and rivers run brown with silt, where the salmon are diminishing and the forests disappearing.

That’s me down there, leaning on a walking stick, teetering on the edge of the curb, white hair blowing in the wind. I will be 85 in a few days. My grandparents homesteaded in Oregon. Our family carries the memory of old growth forests, the rivers alive with salmon, the wildness and beauty that used to be. For 30 years I have lived in this valley watching the clear cuts happen above and around me; watching the stream I live near run turbulent and muddy, eroding the banks and flushing trees and silt downstream to the river.

A few blocks down—on the other side of the highway—a group of people stand in support of the loggers. They, too, live here. They fear the loss of jobs and income. Some come from families that have long been loggers in a state that has been known for its vast forests that seemed to go on forever.

Now Oregon is known as the clear cut state with the weakest protections for the waters and forests of any state on the West Coast. For a moment, a ray of sun breaks through the clouds and we look up to absorb the warmth. And I wonder what I would say if someone from “the other side” were standing next to me, both of us feeling so strongly that we have come to stand here on this stormy day. It is not about the right to log. We will always need and value wood products. It is about the way we choose to treat what we call a re-source. The word assumes it will regenerate, and the earth does have incredible powers of regeneration. When everything is taken from the hills, however, and toxic spray applied to kill the undergrowth, and the intricate system of plants and fungi, trees may be replanted, but the forest is destroyed.

What we see around us in this watershed are the consequences of our actions—just as the planet is now unbalanced by the impact of our choices. At the center of this crisis is an amazing “invention” called a tree which we now know has the ability to clean the air, hold the soil, filter the water, and cool the planet. Perhaps I could just ask the question: Can we find a way to take what we need without destroying that which gives us life?

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HOLY DAY CEREMONY–IMBOLC

 

SATURDAY, February 1, 12-2

At Wanderland Rainforest Iseum

MID-WINTER HOLY DAY CEREMONY: IMBOLC

Holy Waters, Sacred Flame…”

The mid-winter Holy Day of Imbolc celebrates the time when darkness begins to recede and there is a quickening of new life. As the light grows, so does the stirring within us — who, what, and how will we Become? What shadows need illumination within us? What desire needs a bit more light to be seen clearly? What quality in us has dimmed and needs brightening? Now is the time to shed the Dark, and renew our inner flame.

This Holy Day Ceremony, led by Gwendolyn Endicott, includes myth, story, and ritual. There is no charge, but a suggested donation of $10-$20 toward the maintenance of the forest sanctuary is greatly appreciated. The ceremony begins at noon. Please come early rather than late.

Questions: contact Gwendolyn@nehalemtel.net or 503-368-6389 for more information on Wanderland Rainforest Iseum see Wanderlandrainforest.org

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WINTER SOLSTICE HOLY DAY CEREMONY

At Wanderland Rainforest Iseum

Saturday, December 21, 12-2

“From the Darkness comes the Light”

Ice, snow, wind, and rain sweep the earth as darkness comes earlier each day. Winter Solstice is the longest night of the year. This is the Turning. From this night on, the sun returns—longer each day—and begins the gradual awakening of new life.

Winter Solstice celebrates the presence of Spirit and the power of Hope. At this time, we tend the Hearth and listen to the Ancient Wisdom stories of Light born from the deepest Dark . We will follow an ancient story line of images that surround the Solstice: the Tree of Life; the Lights that shine from the tree; the gift of Love at its center; and the child of Hope who is born from Darkness.

The ceremony, led by Gwendolyn Endicott, includes story, ritual, myth, and time for reflection. We begin at noon; come a little early, rather than late. There is no charge, but suggested donations of $10-$20 toward the maintenance of the forest sanctuary are greatly appreciated.

For more information on Wanderland Sanctuary and Iseum Questions: gwendolyn@nehalemtel.net or 503-368-6389

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HOLY DAY CEREMONY —HALLOWMAS

 

HALLOWMAS (SAMHAIN)

Thursday October 31

12-2 at Wanderland Rainforest Iseum

May you be like the moon; Undone and remade a thousand times; Always returning home to your opening heart.

In the forest, Earth is changing. Waters are singing. Alder leaves drift in the wind and pattern the damp earth. Darkness and cold increase and the green force dies back as the strength of all that is returns to its inner source. We, too, return to our core, listening deeply.

Hallows” means threshing floor, where the wheat was separated from the chaff, where we let go of what is no longer needed for our growth. Something dies. Something new begins. For the Celts, this Holy Day was the Shining Portal of Winter and marked the passage into the New Year.

This Ceremony, led by Gwendolyn Endicott, includes myth, story, ritual, and time for reflection. For more information on Wanderland Rainforest Iseum see wanderlandrainforest.org . Questions: gwendolyn@nehalemtel.net

There is no charge for this ceremony. However, suggested donations of $10-$20 are greatly appreciated to help with the maintenance of the Rainforest Sanctuary.

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HOLY DAY CEREMONY–AUTUMN EQUINOX

AUTUMN EQUINOX HOLY DAY CEREMONY

At Wanderland Rainforest Iseum

Monday, September 23, 12-2

In the process of soul making, we can visit our depths over and over, and with each turn of the spiral, gain deeper wisdom and peace.” Hallie Austin

At Autumn Equinox, day and night are once again equal—for a moment balanced— –but we can feel the winds of change as we move into the dark cycle of the year. In the forest, Wind carries the sweet scent of Autumn. Alder leaves drift down, patterned golden against the earth by rain. Darkness comes earlier and stays longer.

In this Holy Day Ceremony, led by gwendolyn Endicott, we will dwell with Gratitude for the gifts the season of growing has brought to us. It is a time for shedding, for going inward to hold and nurture the “seed” of future growth. The animal totem of our journey is Bear who teaches us the wisdom of entering the “cave” of instinctual knowing and introspection .

Our guide will be the ancient Egyptian goddess, Ma’at, who leads us to the understanding that the oldest meaning of Truth is Balance and is called by the name of Earth: ma, maat, matter, mother. In her cycles and systems, Earth teaches us of Balance in change. In Egyptian mythology “seeing” this balance was the basis of wisdom. The mother syllable “ma” meant “to see”; in hieroglyphics it was an eye. Ma’at does not promise that there will be no darkness. She provides the wisdom to “see” while traveling through the darkness. Truth and Kindness are Her compass on this journey.

Ceremony begins at noon. There is no charge, but donations of $10–$20 toward maintenance of the forest sanctuary are greatly appreciated. 

questions: gwendolyn@nehalemtel.net

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