The Wild Muse

wildness, wonder, and the spirit of place

Do something… but what?

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Sometimes knowing what to do in the face of so much uncertainty, horror, and doubt leaves us feeling powerless. This is at least true for me. Our “calls to action” take us away from home and the animals and plants that inhibit our surroundings. When joining forces elsewhere isn’t possible, there is a tendency to read about and absorb what is happening “out there” and feel miserable. Maybe we throw a few dollars in aid, but there is this overwhelm that doesn’t leave.

To some extent, we are powerless… as individuals, at home, raging at the computer or television. I’ve started to feel like this way of being is depleting my spirit. I know that I personally will not solve problems by doing personal acts of resistance that are disengaged from others (wild others included) or what we are fighting: systemic and organized violence  (not joe neighbor who supports Trump, or your sister-in-law who still uses styrofoam).

But since I am not a great power, what can I do with the power I do have?
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I am not a marcher or letter writer. I’m more likely to go rehab a wild area where OHVs have done damage. Still, rehabbing that one area doesn’t guarantee it wont be destroyed again next Memorial Day weekend. It doesn’t eliminate the culture that says it’s macho to ride your quad over native plants.

So what do I do? What do you do?

I think that is where individual actions can feel fruitless unless you elevate them into more meaningful actions that can and do bear some results. Of course doing a river clean-up once and walking away from that river won’t have much benefit over time … But what about devoting myself to that river and the life it supports, and sticking with it? Even if it means bearing witness to outcomes that break my heart, or it puts me in situations where greater actions are called for.

To me, that is where these feelings of disconnect and uselessness begin to dissolve.

Back to the river…

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Author: Aleah Sato

Writer, wanderer, dreamer, desert dweller

3 thoughts on “Do something… but what?

  1. I wish more people were aware of your posts/writing . . . maybe it’s good in a way though (that not too many are seeing it) as I believe you should collect all of them and submit for publication. I LOVE your writing!

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  2. ** all of them ** meaning all of your posts here 🙂

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  3. The gifted are often made miserable
    by some affliction is what the Greeks said.
    And experiencing great truths whether sought
    after or not often leads to deep pain, as we do
    not have the power to change a civilization’s
    misguided ways. Its hard to watch the reaping
    of what’s been sown (for thousands of years now).

    And though not a cure your balm of action involving
    a loving service rendered toward Earth, close at hand,
    speaks most highly of your intentions and awareness.

    If everyone committed to such a local and life affirming
    act who knows where it might ultimately lead too?

    Please do keep writing as others need to hear your POV!
    chazk

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