Though the weather on January was sunny, the beginning of 2107 seemed a bit grey for those of us who would describe ourselves as progressives. The upcoming inauguration of President Trump, his proposed cabinet, and the unfolding Congressional agenda seem to indicate the unraveling of decades of progress.
We fear that we are witnessing the dismantling of environmental protections, full inclusion for LGBTQ people, women’s reproductive rights, due process for immigrants, protection of freedom of religion, voting rights for all, and the commitment to the climate of mutual respect that is needed to foster an inclusive multiracial nation.
As I seek how I might respond, I have found inspiration in a story shared recently by Michael Meade, the renowned storyteller, author, and scholar of mythology, anthropology, and psychology.
Not so very long ago, Meade tells us, in deep hidden cave not far from here, a very, very old women working tirelessly to weave a sacred tapestry that depicts the story of all creation. The holy woman steps away from her loom to attend to a pot of sacred seeds, that she is called to help germinate. These seeds hold the potential for new life.
When she returns to her loom, she finds that a huge dog has latched on to a loose thread and is rapidly unraveling her intricate, beautiful tapestry.
Though she is clearly disappointed, this wise elder wastes little time in mourning the loss. After feeding her own hungry dog, she begins again the task of creating the world story that she dreams of and longs for.
From amongst all the hundreds of stories in his repertoire, Meade chose to share that story, because, for many of us, this feels like a time of great unraveling. Yet, we need to remember that, no matter what, we must continue to engage in the task of creating the world we truly long for.
Despite life’s set backs, the work continues, for the task of dreaming and creating the world of our dreams is endless. And each subsequent re-weaving has the potential to be more beautiful than that which has come before.