Notes on Adaptability, Survival & Emergence in a Time of Earthly Transformation

My grandmother was a collector. A curator of ideas and stories. Before starting grad school in 2013 my mother, partner and I were put to the task of cleaning out her house. She and my grandfather had walked on to the realm of the ancestors a year prior, and everything in their house went unchanged during that time. I learned a lot about her through the process. I realized how deeply her readership had shaped her worldview. She was an avid reader. She held on to piles of magazines, including an original copy of the 1968 TIME magazine issue headlining Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. death, featuring Coretta Scott King on its cover. She had loose archives of recipes, many of which were hand written. There were notes with freestyle thoughts beside cards from family and friends. And at least two unfinished journals lingered, sparsely filled-out with fragments of details. Among these mountainous memorials were a few CDs, including a Mixtape I put together for her back in the day. It was full of jams by Sarah Vaughn — her favorite vocalist.

“There are notes between notes, you know.” — Sarah Vaughn

Every year around her birth week, I remember this experience. In many ways it provided a way for me to heal from her passing. She was, and still is such an important part of my life. At 4’11”, her small frame contained such an amazing life force. My grandmother was a Gemini. She was curious and full of ideas. She was inspiring and inspired. She was adaptable. And she loved to share in good, meaningful conversation. Her life was imperfect, and beautiful, and heart breaking. And she lived it as best she could. This New Moon in Gemini, occurring Wednesday June 13th, paired with the memory of my grandmother and the idea of adaptability, rests strongly in my mind.

In a story published last month for Medium, Nexus Media journalist Marlene Cimons delves into a relatively new area of ecological research — how plants survive climate change by taking naps. Plant intelligence is a topic many scientists are beginning to lean into in the face of a global climate crisis. In this study, researchers found 114 species, mostly perennial varieties, with this particular adaptation trait. In essence, plants that remain dormant underground will forgo reproduction and photosynthesis, in some cases for a decade or more, for the possibility of survival. While this type of plant adaptation is by no means a new phenomenon, the research does provide a fresh perspective on how species evolve through adaptation. And we don’t usually think of plants in this way; hunkering down into the earth for the unforeseeable future. We recognize our relatives by their impetus to emerge and grow. But when conditions are unfavorable for life to thrive, other solutions become more urgent.

We live the best that we can. And that doesn’t always mean that we live our best lives. Sometimes the most resilient aspects of our character come alive underground. And at some junction a decision much be made — to remain safely beneath the surface, or to emerge forth into unknown circumstances.

In her work on shaping lasting movements for justice, adrienne maree brown writes:

“Emergence is beyond what the sum of its parts could even imagine.”

In Chinese medicine, the Wood element is concerned with emergence, growth, and benevolence. The desire to not only unfold skillfully, but to do so with compassion. This requires an exquisite practice in imagination and, ultimately, love. Because, if our most profound, flexible moments happen when no one sees, such wisdom may remain unknown until after we are gone. So, what do we need from each other, in the present moment, in order to emergence as safe and whole beings?

As the summer solstice approaches, I will continue to explore ideas related to adaptability, survival, and emergence. In honor of the New Moon and solstice, I’m offering, CORE Consultations: Sustainable Self Care Strategies, designed to guide you toward greater resiliency, and deeper self love. I look forward to delving in with you.

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Mixtape 16

Each day provides multiple opportunities to begin. As an individual. As a member of a community. For all we are related to. Today’s New Moon embodies that spirit, as it moves into the Earth sign of Capricorn.

Earth is a supportive facilitator for Water. Providing a base through which Water is able to permeate. The essence of Earth — both the physical planet, as well the energetic quality of the land itself — is absorbed in what is possible. The Earth is common ground for creativity and insight, with an immense power to regenerate and restore.

In honor of the New Moon, and the coming Lunar New Year I’m taking a ‘lil rest from the screen. I’m thankful for the time and space to align with spirit for work ahead. I put together a playlist for the journey I’m about to delve into, and put up a link in my bio if you’d like to listen.

See y’all next week!

 

In Solidarity + New Moon Blessings,

Christian

New Moon in Gemini: The Heart is the House of the Mind

Ideas are often catalysts for action. Overtime, what was once an inclination, can unfold deeply into a vision of something greater. A design beyond wild imagination takes great agility of the mind, and an equally gracious heart. Gemini has both at once, and can serve as a guide into the challenges that arise on the path toward presence.  Continue reading “New Moon in Gemini: The Heart is the House of the Mind”

New Moon In Aries: The Beautiful Struggle

It takes the right amount of warmth to bud forth. A bit of friction mixed with momentum, turning over and over at a speed imperceptible to the human eye. At the same time, the cadence outwardly appears slow, perhaps motionless. Petals stretch open inch by inch, offering bold colors enhanced by the light of the sun. This is the song of creation. Every thing on this earth unfolds in a similar way and the spring season is a time ripe for experiencing the glory of our growth. It is magic. It is alchemy. It is, ultimately, what unites us.  Continue reading “New Moon In Aries: The Beautiful Struggle”