Communicating with the Spirits of the Land

Anyone who has learned animal communication (or more accurately, unlearned the idea that they aren’t able to do it) knows that telepathy with animals is only the beginning. Once you know that you can communicate with animals, you quickly realize that you can communicate with all life forms, including ecosystems, microcosms, and energies. Now that it’s springtime, I’m using my skills to communicate with the spirit(s) of the farm. It’s a useful tool when gardening to enlist their help and guidance.

Since a visit to the Home Depot garden department is probably eminent in each of our futures, I thought it would be a good time to tell y’all how I communicate with the spirit(s) of the land. I’d like to suggest grounding to the earth by walking barefoot, but the fire ants around here tell me that it’s also okay to wear shoes. Even then, you can wander your property, reconnect with nature, touch a leaf, admire a flower, water a plant. Paying homage to the earth and admiring its beauty is a good way to start the conversation.

Next, find a place to sit with your eyes closed, and meditate with the land and its energies. Begin by listening to all the sounds around you. First, you’ll notice the louder sounds… a rooster crowing, a dog barking, a train going by. But drop down past those sounds and listen for the quieter ones. The birds singing. The soft snort of a donkey grazing far down the pasture. The wind blowing…

Then go even deeper to notice all the sounds the wind creates as it interacts with every plant and creature around you. It’s almost as if they’re creating a subtle symphony. The wind in the treetops makes a multilayered whooshing sound… but even deeper than that, each tree, each branch, maybe even each leaf has its own frequency. The pines on the hill above me make a deep rushing sound, like a waterfall hitting the bottom a rocky chasm. The Water Oaks that tower over the swamp make a lighter, higher sound. The dry, dead leaves that still haven’t fallen make a brittle clatter, and the oak leaves that gave up the ghost skitter across the driveway.

Now, go even deeper. Listen for the sounds you can’t hear. A seed just beneath the surface of the soil cracking open, its two halves pushed apart by the thin white shoot that will dig down to become a network of roots, and rise up to become a stem, leaves, flowers.

Once you’ve done this, you’ve established a connection. Now, you can ask the earth anything from “What should I plant here?” to “Will you ask the weeds to release their hold on the soil so I can pull them up?” and even, “What is my purpose in this place and time?”

I once asked the elemental energies of my front flowerbed where I should plant the truckload of flowers I’d just bought. Then I closed my eyes and waited for the picture to unfold in my imagination. I asked which of the existing plants needed to be pruned or thinned-out. I saw an image of the tractor pulling out a row of Beauty Berries that had gotten too big for their britches. I felt bad about killing those plants, but then an immediate image chased the feeling away: an image of those shrubs planted in the swamp where they could get as big as they wanted. I asked how I should order my tasks. Pull up the shrubs! The thought came through like a shouted command.

But I wanted to plant all the flowers I’d bought, so I proceeded to ignore the command and do what I wanted. After I had set out all the flowers, scattered a layer of pine straw all around them, and turned the sprinkler on low, I used the tractor and a logging chain to pull up the first Beauty Berry.

Then I learned that I should have listened to the guidance I received. The Beauty Berry’s roots had spread runners just under the ground during the winter, creating a shallow but sturdy network that ran all the way to the sidewalk. And when I pulled up the shrub, the roots came up too, of course… uprooting every tender plant I had just set out. So, with the sun already beginning to set, I had the fun of doing the work I’d done that day all over again.

So now, when I ask the spirits of the farm what they want me to do around here, I listen.

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