Here we are, already mid-way through 2018, and the world hasn’t ended yet. Nor have the trucks stopped moving; the electric grid gone down; the latest viral wave upon wave of infection, whether physical, emotional, mental, or digital, done us all in. Nor has global warming melted all the glaciers (yet); nor has the population exploded to the point where if we don’t stop having babies, nature will stop us from having them, and/or wave upon wave of immigration will overwhelm all systems set up to receive and integrate or push back or hate or love or have compassion for, etc. etc. There’s no end to the troubles we face as we head into the final year of the first decade of the 21st century still intact, kinda, sorta, and of course, wondering what’s next with a president who’s either a complete idiot, stark raving mad, or an utter genius. Who knows? And who knows which is which as we battle the residual corruption in our own souls, working to wake ourselves up, to learn how to serve something larger than ourselves, before it’s too late.
Meanwhile, I happened to pick up this issue of Crone Chronicles today, with its theme of Death & Rebirth. Hmmm. . . are we not there yet? Seems to me we are. Dying and being reborn, simultaneously. So I add one new synchronicity to those detailed in the following editorial: the fact that I picked up THIS issue of that old magazine, at THIS intensely pregnant moment in time.
Savoring the Synchronicities
by Ann Kreilkamp
Several weeks ago, this message on the crone phone: “Hi Ann. This is Deborah. Just wanted to let ou know the cover for the next issue is coming along fine.” I hoped so. Covers are what people see first.
I wince to notice my preoccupation with covers. With what, even as a child, I called “the appearances.” As a child I wanted to live from the inside out, scorning my mother’s and sisters’ preoccupation with being pretty.
By the time I was 26, my internal process had accelerated to the point where the masks I was wearing ripped off, one after another — the masks of good child, good student, good wife, good mother. Feeling naked and raw, my only protection was to burrow deep underground. I sank into the mulch of the obscure feelings saturating our culture — all the guilt and blame, the shame — and longed to descend even deeper — into naturalness, the arms of the mother, the embrace of gravity. I was obsessed with what was down there, haunted by how it would feel to move from the root.
Now at age 50, I am busy with appearances, covers! Integrating what I discovered down below with what is out there. Seeking to become whole.
Two nights before the cover for this issue was due I had a dream: There is a submission for the cover. It is a sculpture: the bald head of a baby, emerging from the mud, eyes and nose visible, mouth still below the surface. We are trying to figure out how to render it in two dimensions.
When I told my friend Claudia about this dream, she was frightened. To her, the image felt suffocating. “What if the baby can’t breath?” she said, then quickly realized, “of course, I had asthma when I was a child.” I assured her, “No problem, the baby is being born; going up, not down.”
The very next night, two more dreams. The first: Someone submits a huge drawing for the cover, that of the statue of liberty. A spray of roses crosses her chest diagonally (like Miss America). Only her eyes are blindfolded. And her legs are huge, old, flaccid.
The second dream: A photograph is submitted. Of a mother and child in an old ‘50s setting, homey and comfortable, deeply domestic. The child is seated in its wooden high schair, waiting to be fed. The mother is standing behind, arms wide, a jar of baby food in one hand, a spoon in the other. Both heads are skulls.
These two dreams feel related. The images in all three of these dreams feel collective, not just mine.
The next morning Deborah brought over her cover illustrating the death and rebirth theme for this issue. A skull lay at the bottom, under water, cracked open, a seed pod inside it, forming the root from which a stem of a lotus was growing. Above the water, a baby, resting on the lotus blossom.
Three days later, Janet, another artist, brought us another image: of a skull inside a seed pod.
Deborah’s image, but in reverse! More difficult to accept. Inside either of them, lies the other. Inside death, life. Inside life, death. We introduce the section on death and rebirth with this image, and called it DeathLifeDeathLifeDeathLife.
Finally, yesterday I had a Jin Shin session with my friend Todd. During the session, several images came through her. First, while working on my right leg, through which an enormous amount of energy was pouring, she laughed and said, “I see you kicking at a pile of ashes, trying to find the green shoot underneath…it’s as if you have lived with the ashes so long that you are determined to find that green shoot!”
Then, at the end of the session, she said she was hearing the Hail Mary prayer to the Catholic Blessed Virgin, only it ended in a different way. “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us now, and at the hour of our birth. Amen.” DeathBirthDeathBirthDeathBirth.
“And now,” she concluded, “I am hearing the Hallelujiah Chorus . . . And unto us a child is born.”
Our child. Our new world.