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Earth Day

Dear WIN Community:

In honor of Earth Day, Reverend Dr. Sally Palmer, the Team Leader of WIN's On Sacred Ground Team, has written a beautiful piece, featured in the Laramie Boomerang. Enjoy!

Celebrating the Web of Life

Rev. Dr. Sally Palmer

Years ago, when our world wasn’t quite so noisy, a wise rabbi wrote words that have marked my soul: “May it be my custom to go outdoors each day, among the trees and grasses, among all growing things and there may I be alone, and enter into prayer to talk with the One that I belong to.”             

Rabbi Nachman was right, we need moments of solitude and personal insight. How lucky are we when we find the earth a place of inspiration!

As we celebrate Earth Day one more time, perhaps we can see the connection between our need for stillness and the goodness bestowed in the earth that’s all around, in the beauty that touches our “fingertips.”

It isn’t what we buy or how we look that is important on reflective days, but it is what we see—in the gift of spring blossoms, or the pattern of rabbits’ feet, or the flight of birds across the sky.  And, it is what we see in a human face that sings of the One Who gives life to all. We just have to look, as Hildegard of Bingen did until she saw that “the earth” is the “the raw material for humankind,” and “also the substance of the incarnation of God’s son.”  

Perhaps our deepest hope is persistently trusting that the ordinary substance of our lives is a place where the Spirit dwells…not just in the spectacular, but in the substance. And, that hope is ours as we stop the noise of our lives and simply contemplate what is real in our individual substance and in the intricate balances of the whole. We can stop the noise on Earth Day, or any ordinary day in Wyoming, when we pause to appreciate the gentleness of prairie grass or the majesty of the mountains. It is not just a rite of springtime, but a perennial gift to seek solitary moments in nature, as Rabbi Nachman did, and to be filled with belonging to the very Web of Creation:

Holy One, be born

in our imagination

and our reason,

in the rhythms of the day

and the stillness of night,

in the pulse of life,

and the hope of prayer,

in moments of mercy

and the music of our lives.   

With Gratitude and Peace,

Susie Markus, Ph.D.

Executive Director

Wyoming Interfaith Network

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