Introduction to Learning how Land Speaks

By Peter Reason
May 4, 2023

The fields are misty as I walk toward the riverbank as dawn breaks; birds are singing in the nearby wooded hillside. When I reach my ‘spot’, that narrow finger of land, no more than a meter wide, that reaches out between the Rivers Frome and Avon at their confluence, I pause to take in the light shimmering on the surface and the dark reflections of the willow and alder that line the banks. I drop my bag and walking pole, then pause, waiting for the moment to approach. When the time seems right, I bow, imagining the boundaries of my separate self softening, flowing out to become part of the wider whole; I introduce myself with my everyday, Medicine and Sacred names; and I call for teaching from the Four Directions. These ceremonial gestures serve to further separate me from the mundane and to open myself to new encounters. Once I feel I have properly arrived, I take out my flask of tea and breakfast cake and offer some to River, as an Australian Aboriginal elder might throw a small handful of sand into the river to announce themselves as being there with meaningful intent. Sitting quietly, I try to clear my mind of rambling thoughts and offer River my attentive love.

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