Re-Enchating: Relationship with the Land — Part 1

A friend has me thinking about the concepts of being in relationship to your landbase and being a Witch.

We Pagans often talk about “re-enchanting the Earth,” but, or course, the Earth, the land, hasn’t changed. The land has always been alive, enchanting, approachable. We’re the ones who’ve changed. Many in modern culture have fallen out of touch with the living land. What I believe we actually mean is that we need to rekindle the relationship that people once had with the land.

Our ancestors, from wherever they came, and the people who once lived on this land almost certainly, at one time in their history, were more aware of the life in the land than many modern people are today. So people knew that rocks, and clouds, and trees, and animals, and bodies of water all had their own lives and their own intelligences. And there were times and ways in which humans could interact with those. But then, gradually, due to Christianity, and the Enlightenment, and colonialism, and the Industrial Revolution, and patriarchy, and a number of other factors many people have become less and less aware of that.

And so, re-enchating the Earth is, to me, a process of becoming more aware myself and helping other people to become more aware that the Earth is alive and everything in it is alive and that we can live in relationship with that rather than living all alone.

Living all alone is really kind of sad. If you have a whole bunch of cousins, and neighbors, and people you could be friends with, and get to know, and have your life be enriched by, and get help from, but instead you stay inside your house and never even think of going out to interact with them, well, that’s kind of sad. That doesn’t mean that every cousin or neighbor is going to be your best friend or is going to be the nicest person you ever met, but even that’s worth knowing about and taking into consideration in how you do things.

Do you agree? What does re-enchanting the Earth mean to you? Do you know how your ancestors or the people who once lived where you live interacted with the Earth?

Photo by the blogger. If you copy, please link back.

4 responses to “Re-Enchating: Relationship with the Land — Part 1

  1. Even at my most detached from the Earth, I’ve always found the unexpected pieces of life. A single rhubarb plant growing outside the apartment house that no one knows where it came from. Well, it’s a gift. But this winter, with the stay-at- home order, I had a moment. Leaning over, lacing my work boots to go feed the birds and wild life, I was suddenly 3 years old again, watching my Grandfather lacing up his work boots because it was time to feed the birds and wild life. And I realize that, 60 years later, here I am, repeating the pattern lacing up my own boots because the birds need fed. It was a powerful moment.
    I think that the forced isolation is putting more people in touch with the land. Gardening, observing the weather/sky, and remembering what they learned when they were small. Hopefully they will see the life and how it reaches back and grows forward.

  2. Some of the authors referenced in this recent Washington Post magazine story are writing about this very thing. Now I’m even MORE motivated to check out their books. https://www.washingtonpost.com/magazine/2021/04/12/climate-news-is-relentlessly-objectively-grim-should-we-ever-allow-ourselves-feel-optimism/

  3. Living alone is not always sad. In every time and place there have been those called to solitude in the forests, deserts, and mountains. Something within them needed the space and silence.

  4. Pingback: Building Ethical Relationships with the Land – Serendipities

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