To breathe again! After days of dense clouds filled with hot, humid air and smoke residue, followed by torrential rains, we can finally breathe and see the sun. Truly a blessing! The days before, and sadly, surely more to come, are stark reminders that climate change is not a thing of the future but is very much in this present moment.
Spending this past year developing In the Presence of Trees, seasonal dances sited in Greater Hartford parks, brought the JDPP Ensemble and me into an ongoing dialogue with the forest. The vibrancy and energy of the trees became visceral realities to us each time we entered. We were able to participate in the sense of communal connection, to feel the forest’s invisible rhythms, to slow down our sense of time and experience a larger universe of which we are only a small part. It was healing, restorative, and expansive. So was bringing audiences there with us.
We cannot ignore what is happening to our earth. The hubris that humanity has shown does not hold a candle to the power of nature. And the earth is losing patience—we have given her no choice.
So as we appreciate the respite of the clear and cool, let’s strengthen our resolve to do whatever we can to honor the earth, the forests, the oceans, the animals—the whole family of which we are a part. And in the beautiful wisdom of the late honorable Zen Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, let’s “walk as though kissing the earth with your feet”.
Please gather on the lawn with us at the Hartford International University of Religion and Peace on August 22 (rain date August 24) to see film selections from In the Presence of Trees projected for the first time on the unique structure of the university’s main building as we are reminded of all that surrounds us and all that we need to protect. https://tinyurl.com/JDPPTreesAtHIU