Nature and the Human Soul: Cultivating Wholeness and Community in a Fragmented World by Bill Plotkin

Nature and the Human Soul: Cultivating Wholeness and Community in a Fragmented World by Bill Plotkin

Author:Bill Plotkin [Plotkin, Bill]
Language: eng
Format: epub
Tags: Developmental, Essays, Family & Relationships, Nature, Parenting, Personal Growth, Psychology, Self-Help
ISBN: 9781577313540
Google: 3q-e0hpHnzAC
Amazon: B0010SEOW6
Publisher: New World Library
Published: 2010-10-03T23:00:00+00:00



The gift that the Wanderer contributes to her world — simply and amply through her presence — is the aura of mystery, darkness, the unknown, the emerging future. The Cocoon is the time of life when we are most “other,” most enigmatic, least defined. The Wanderer becomes a foreign thing, embodying and imparting to those of other stages the ambience of the wild, the imaginable, the anomalous, the dream . . . the possible human and the future of human society.

The Wanderer is the early-phase Visionary who is mythically and often literally sent by the village out into the wilderness with the charge of gathering a piece of the unknown and bringing it back — the unknown that is at once a threat to the customs and routines of the village and the village's only hope for cultural sustainability. “Without vision, the people shall perish.”29 She brings back tidings and talismans from the edge, from the periphery, the psychospiritual realms beyond the borders. She is both admired and somewhat feared.

It's as if she has been conscripted for a type of warrior service, as if she is paying her debt to society by risking it all in her search for a visionary boon for her clan. Among soulcentric people, this is their counterpart to military service. This is what their youth are doing instead of — or if necessary, in addition to — defending their communities. They are not serving as missionaries for the church, the corporation, or the government. This wandering in the darkness is a wrestling with angels, a struggle the healthy ego hopes to lose. As Rilke writes,

. . . Whoever was beaten by this Angel

(who often simply declined the fight)

went away proud and strengthened

and great from that harsh hand,

that kneaded him as if to change his shape.

Winning does not tempt that man.

This is how he grows: by being defeated, decisively, by

constantly greater beings.30


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