March 2015 Newsletter // by Ian MacKenzie
Dear <<First Name>>,
This weekend marked the spring equinox, punctuated by a total solar eclipse. If you live in my part of the world, the west coast of Turtle Island, the blossoms have been flowering for weeks. If you're east of the Rocky Mountains, it's likely snow still covers the grass.
They say an inordinate number of human deaths occur just before spring. Perhaps for those in the twilight of their days the labour to bloom, yet another season, is too much. Perhaps they find kinship in the quiet clarity of winter, recognizing their own death must become the soil for the next generation.
This weekend, I said goodbye to my grandfather. Our history is brief; I grew up mostly absent of his face and voice. Estranged from the family, he was mostly a rumour. 10 years ago I sought him out, and learned finally, about the path he had taken. I can't say I would have done the same - though I recognize much in his pursuit of knowledge and authenticity.
He died with such speed that it was impossible to attend his death bed. Instead, I breathed a prayer in his name from afar. A hard thing, to bear the end of your grandfather. Condolences of "loss" are quick to the tongue, yet, whence did we accept that the dead are gone? If death is understood as annihilation, then the threshold is a terrifying abyss. Yet somehow, I suspect the leaves fallen last autumn, the animals expired and picked to the bone, and the sunset that disappears each night beyond the horizon - these are endings, yes, but they are not The End.
All of these whisper that the dead are not gone. They become the ground upon which new life can emerge.
I thank my grandfather for the short time we had together. May the task be recognized among myself and my family to keep him, and those who came before him, well and fed, until our time comes. And may we be gathered in as worthy ancestors to the ones who will come after us.
HEALING OF LOVE: SEX, PARTNERSHIP & THE VILLAGE
I'm very excited to share my new short film project HEALING OF LOVE which we're crowdfunding through Kickstarter. With divorce rates over 50% in North America and Europe, and depression rampant in our cities, we collectively need a new vision of love and partnership.
I've been invited to Tamera, a peace village in Portugal, where they've spent 35 years developing social practices to navigate love in community. Find out why they believe healing of love is necessary to foster a new culture of peace. Please contribute & share with your networks! Campaign ends April 26, 2015.
SHORT: CHARLES EISENSTEIN & THE MORE BEAUTIFUL WORLD
Shot in the fading light on the shores of Northern Scotland, this short film captures Charles Eisenstein in a moment of grief and reflection. The familiar story of the past is crumbling, while the new story has yet to arrive. In a time of social and ecological crisis, what can we as individuals do in this space between? Produced in partnership with Sustainable Human.
DIE WISE - STEPHEN JENKINSON'S NEW BOOK - AVAILABLE NOW
With great honour I share that Stephen Jenkinson's new book "Die Wise: A Manifesto for Sanity and Soul" is available widely today. My photograph adorns the cover, shot in the sharp cold night on the shores of the Bonnechere River, next to the Orphan Wisdom farm in Ottawa.
This book is an incredible gift for those perhaps already in the sway of their dying, and for those who have yet to see their end on the horizon. This book is a willingness to learn what the world asks of us, in these times.
» Order the book online here http://orphanwisdom.com/shop/die-wise
Humanity is more than ever threatened by its own actions; we hear a lot about the need to minimize footprints and to reduce our impact. But what if our footprints were beneficial? What if we could meet human needs while increasing the health and well-being of our planet? This is the premise behind permaculture: a design process based on the replication of patterns found in nature.
Recently, I came on board with INHABIT as story advisor. This film, releasing widely online April 22, explores the many environmental issues facing us today and examines solutions that are being applied using the ecological design lens of permaculture.
» Watch: INHABIT: A Permaculture Perspective
Want to bring me to your event? I'm available for speaking gigs on crowdfunding, filmmaking, and the emerging paradigm. Contact me here
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THANK YOU FOR READING!