Tag Archive: rest


Maribyrnong river footscray


The Maribyrnong river in Footscray on the lands of Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung and the Bunurong peoples of the Kulin Nation

 

Read the following items offering an indigenous lens on relating to country applied to the COVID-19 lockdown. How can other ways of knowing and wisdom of elders, inform how we might live out our own discipleship or radical discipleship within community during these times?

‘Aboriginal people talk about Country in the same way that they would talk about a person: they speak to Country, sing to Country, visit Country, worry about Country, feel sorry for Country, and long for Country. People say that Country knows, hears, smells, takes notice, takes care, is sorry or happy… Country is a living entity with a yesterday, today and tomorrow, with a consciousness and a will toward life’.

Deborah Bird Rose ‘(08) Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature

 

A poem by Ngāti Hine/Ngāpuhi writer Nadine Anne Hura

Rest now, e Papatūānuku
Breathe easy and settle
Right here where you are
We’ll not move upon you
For awhile
We’ll stop, we’ll cease
We’ll slow down and stay home
Draw each other close and be kind
Kinder than we’ve ever been.
I wish we could say we were doing it for you
               as much as ourselves
But hei aha
We’re doing it anyway
It’s right. It’s time.
Time to return
Time to remember
Time to listen and forgive
Time to withhold judgement
Time to cry
Time to think
               About others

Remove our shoes
Press hands to soil
Sift grains between fingers
               🍃 Gentle palms
Time to plant
Time to wait
Time to notice
To whom we belong
For now it’s just you
And the wind
And the forests and the oceans and the sky full of rain
Finally, it’s raining!
Ka turuturu te wai kamo o Rangi ki runga i a koe
                   (may the tears of Ranginui rain down on you)
Embrace it
This sacrifice of solitude we have carved out for you
He iti noaiho – a small offering
People always said it wasn’t possible
To ground flights and stay home and stop our habits of consumption
But it was
It always was.
We were just afraid of how much it was going to hurt
– and it IS hurting and it will hurt and continue to hurt
But not as much as you have been hurt.
So be still now
Wrap your hills around our absence
Loosen the concrete belt cinched tight at your waist
Rest.
Breathe.
Recover.
Heal –
And we will do the same.

rāhui –  is a term that has been used by some in NZ to apply in lieu of terms such as  ‘lockdown’ or ‘shutdown’ or ‘isolation’

https://maoridictionary.co.nz/word/6420 (verb) to put in place a temporary ritual prohibition, closed season, ban, reserve – traditionally a rāhui was placed on an area, resource or stretch of water as a conservation measure or as a means of social and political control for a variety of reasons which can be grouped into three main categories: pollution by tapu, conservation and politics…

So if a water source has been compromised it might be indicated as a rāhui being in place until it is cleansed, or if hunting has been done in an area, it might be rāhui so that it’s not hunted two seasons in a row which might impact the wildlife population numbers. By referring to lockdown as rāhui, a different intention can be applied to this time – concepts of sacredness and healing are evoked.

On the Ancestors Singing Facebook page they’ve been having Friday night fireside chats and a couple of weeks ago Aunty Judy spoke to COVID and learned wisdom about strength and resilience:

  • We care about family, take care of our kids and our elders
  • Go back/connect to a place where your strength is
  • Place your feet on the ground/draw strength from the land
  • Check in with your body, what is it telling you?
  • Grief, resilience, strength… we know something about that. Especially want to acknowledge the loss being triggered if you have kids you can’t see or grandparents you can’t see because you’ve been separated from your family before
  • It’s not the work of people that heals, it’s the land. As soon as you can, however you can, connect with the land.
  • Diploma of Community Recovery…working on developing this qualification.

gum leaves

What arises for your community with these readings?  How does this lens align or affirm  or differ from our thinking/experience of lockdown?

How might using a word like rāhui with implications for healing and sacred time change the way we feel about ‘lockdown’?

I’ve seen lots of people making bread, planting food, crocheting… from kombucha scobies to sourdough starters  – is this to control/participate in food systems? how we would like to spend our time if we always had more?  A return to ‘old’ ways? What “powers” are interrupted by those choices?

What new things (if any) are people doing? What is honoured/kept by those rhythms? Are there new practices that we’ve started during lockdown that we want to keep? 

Does the list from Aunty Judy make you want to try something else to heal?

 

Further reading if you’re interested:

Nourishing Terrains: Australian Aboriginal views of Landscape and Wilderness by Deborah Rose

Lent word: Mahi

We carry the work with us, even when we leave. Leaves of work. Leave from work. Leave work behind, it’s  Friday. #work #mahi

Advent word: Rest

Today was the day to cut the lawn, weed, clean the esky and camp chairs, plan shade… the role of hosting isn’t that restful and yet, to potter at home is a kind of rest, to talk through our plans is a kind of rest, to have an easy meal with a cold drink binge watching The Witcher is another kind of rest. And it feels good. #rest #okioki #adventwords2019

This weekend some friends and I did a hike in Kinglake National Park finishing at Mason Falls. The conversation was as wide ranging as our footsteps, as we were washed by rain and the knowing that the world is beautiful… beautiful.

staying in bed with a book

There’s nobody home
So go away
Nobody home but me
And I don’t want company
Just this view and the sun
And music in all the rooms

Don’t phone –
I’ve taken it off the hook
Don’t knock on my door
I’ve locked it
Don’t worry about me –
I’m fine
So leave me alone
Tomorrow
Or the day after
Or sometime next week
I’ll become again
A social animal but
Not today
Today… just
Keep away

Bub Bridger
Wellington #NZWOMANPOETS

field of purple daisies

The pause between moments
Smells like woodsmoke
Feels like velvet
Sounds like rain
Tastes like dark chocolate
Looks like purple fire.

Between inhale and exhale
There is a whole lifetime
Between past and present
Universes coalesce and dissolve
The world of between
Non-existent, never-ending.

We live there sometimes
Stopping our hearts to live between the beats
Unable to stop the world around us
Unwilling to let go and let time roll forward.
It cannot last, we know this,
But living in the pause can soothe
Can comfort and strengthen us
Allowing us to hold on to the peace of between
And face the inexorable now.

 

Becky Ellen-Johnson
Kapiti #NZWOMANPOETS

David’s Cabin

Davids cabin gembrook retreat centre

The new cabin up at Gembrook is ready to host guests! A lovely property to ramble about on – the guiding values of this space for rest and renewal are of hospitality, simplicity, community and care for the land… so think woodfire stove, gas burner, solar powered lighting, tank water, outdoor composting toilet and, you know, a quiet that creeps into your soul and brings you peace. A very affordable getaway to keep in mind next time you need it, or to recommend to others… you can find more about Gembrook Retreat Centre here.

I guess this place has a special place in my heart as a writer. I need time and space to tune in to the voice that is mine and to Listen.  This is a space that has feed my heart, my soul, and my imagination and I think it can offer that to others too – whether you are looking for a walk and getting into nature,   doing deep self-work and feeling impoverished, doing a self-directed contemplative retreat (this one I was using 7 Sacred Pauses by Macrina Wiederkehr), or just want a quiet place to write, write, WRITE.

Gembrook Retreat is like a refreshing well. Come and drink the good water.

 

 

 

Rest

IMAG0769

Rest.
Lie back.
Dwell in your own skin.
Made by Me and belonging to Me.
Nothing and no one can take that away.
What I make, I see, and say that it is good.
Nothing knows its purpose but I know its Purpose.
Nothing knows its place but I know its Place.
Nothing knows itself but I know its Self.
You are as you were made to be –
no more or less than that.
No less Mine for that.
Rest.
Lie back.
Dwell in your own skin.

Talitha Fraser

Monbulk Creek – Belgrave