Squirrel Mode, 2012, Intentional Community

Do you ever wonder if you have lived other lives?  I do.  I am fairly certain that reincarnation exists.  Observing my children when they were first born and through their early years confirmed this.  From their first days they showed traits that persist to the present.

Kris, my eldest, was a child who would try something and then retreat before doing it again.  He took his first steps around 13 months, wouldn’t take another for 3 weeks and then just started walking.  When he decided to move out of the house with friends, he made the initial plans, disappeared for a few weeks and then showed up like nothing was unusual and move in with them.  I see the threads of this in his actions still.

Jenny talked at an early age.  She had phone skills at three which rivaled most adults.  Jenni would dominate any family dinner, including standing on the table and singing for almost an hour.  I felt pretty strange when I finally started asking her to stop talking so someone else could.  Jenni is still the great communicator, between her wonderful writing to her sage advice she fills the sound waves.

For myself, I’ve had a number of experiences which substantiate this belief.  A knowing of a certain area before I’ve ever been there is one.  When on family trips I used to describe where we were going to my parents before we arrived.  Then as a young adult I had several days where I knew what was coming before it happened.  The last time a dramatic experience of pre-cognition occurred I was stuck at dusk in a remote place with a friend.  Our motorcycle had stopped running and the only way we would get home was if a van would stop and help.  I described the white van with the blue stripe minutes before it turned the corner.  The man stopped, helped us and eventually gave us dinner and a ride home.

A few years ago, Neil and I traveled to Amsterdam.  When we came home I was determined to return and live there.  I felt compelled.  I looked online to see how I might get an ‘au pair’ job as a way of funding myself.  I told Jenni she had to go and we worked on getting her into a study program.  My hope was she would stay and bring me over.  A month after we returned I took a workshop on past life regression.   This was a real fluke for me as I normally wouldn’t do something like this, but there I was.  The leader would talk us into a hypnotic trance state and then guide us to have an experience.  I never felt hypnotised, but I was in a relaxed space where I was open to whatever would come.  In one of our sessions this is what happened.

I was in Amsterdam during WWII.  I was a young man and I was standing on the sidelines in a crowd of people.  We were behind barriers and there were people walking along the street in front of us.  They had on winter coats with yellow stars.  I felt so guilty, and responsible and helpless.  My grief was overwhelming. 

The vision went on but it began to feel like I was trying to create an ending, only the street scene felt genuine.  In the days that followed my obsession with Amsterdam faded.  I still love the city, my memories of our time there, but I don’t feel compelled to live there anymore.  Perhaps the ties that were stirred by our travels found a resolution.

These are some of the reasons I have a strong belief in reincarnation.  Lately, I’ve had the feeling that I’ve lived another life.  I’ve been a squirrel!  Not the life I would have imagined for myself, but quite close all the same.  The squirrels this fall have been burying their stash in my vegetable beds and other places.  I, too, have been storing my stash and when talking with friends I describe my behavior as squirrel mode.

I started with drying apples from our tree.  That lead me to buying peaches and making peach leather and dried peaches.  The other day I froze about 18 pounds of peach slices and dried the other 2 pounds of the box I bought.  Then there is my yearly tomato process.  I usually roast most of my tomatoes, put up a few bags of whole tomatoes, and dry all the cherry tomatoes to use like paste.  I don’t can anymore as 40 minutes of processing seems to me to boil out any nutritional value.  Freezing is easier.  This year I made tomato leather:  puree tomatoes, spread on a special surface, and dry in the food drier till done.  Then I powdered them and will use them like tomato paste.  I made tomato pasta with some of the powder – yum.  I also roasted about 20 ripe bell peppers, and made kale chips (dried kale coated in tamari) from the kale in the garden.  Earlier this summer, I made apricot jam, strawberry rhubarb jam, and rhubarb sauce.  I found a recipe for tomato jam and made that too.  So far I’ve tried it as a barbecue sauce and a condiment.  I like it.

This last weekend I attended a Permaculture Conference.  The conference stirred my long held wishes for community and mutual support.  A lifestyle that empowers each of us to gather together and support each other in living the life we have all known before.  I’m inspired to raise organic bees, grow mushrooms for food and medicinal purposes, and build an aquaponics set up in the greenhouse to grow fish and food.

Maybe squirrel mode is more than getting ready for winter: it’s getting ready for the futureSquirrel mode is taking a proactive stance to create the world I want to live in.  My vision of the future is to consciously gather together in mutual support, share our visions, talents and resources and use this to support a connected, healthy life.  I want to be a part of an intentional community of individuals and households who want to cooperate together.  Living an isolated existence in denial that we need each other just doesn’t cut it for me anymore.  There is room for so much creativity and growth.  I think 2012 can be a renaissance of wonder, at least, that’s where I’m headed.  If interested let me know.

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