While environmental scientists across the world were working hard to finalize the assessment of the 2019 UN Report on the State of the Environment, I was eagerly descending the steps to my basement art therapy office on Main Street, Ann Arbor so I could put the finishing touches on my latest painting. I’ve felt this space to be particularly compatible with psychological work that requires a quieting of the mind chatter in order to be able to access inner wisdom.
By Peggy River Singer
River: Are you ready, Jasper
Jasper: Yes. I've had many lifetimes as other kinds of animals. Hawks, owls, hares, beasts of all kinds. Every life teaches us something. Animals and humans are alike in that sense.
Now, then. I remember a tiger, I think it was my mother parent. That was a very short life, I was very weak at birth, the last to breathe air [the runt of the litter], and it was hard, so very hard, to lift my head. My mother SO BEAUTIFUL SHE WAS, in body and spirit, grieved for me even as I slipped away, darkness came upon me as I felt her great tongue gently, gently blessing me with love and HOPE. My heart fills with the emotions even now, recalling that moment so vividly...
The next life after that was my choice, and I chose to be a lion. A lion of India you understand, I had decided to stay in India after being a tiger cub. It was my hope that I would be able to meet my tiger mother in physical form, but it was not to be. The Gir Lions [living in the Gir Forest] are quite different from what I have heard of African lions. We are more graceful, more lightly built is a good way to say it, seemingly less massive in muscle, very beautiful in our way. In this life I was a male, a young male ready to find my own way in the world as my father lion did not wish me to challenge him, as is the way among lions.
So I set off away from all that was familiar, walking many miles and days. I had a male friend with me, we thought we might start our own lion family together, this is not unknown among lions.
River: Did you have any ideas about which way to go?
Jasper: We had listened to the elders' stories about what lay in each direction, so we had what you call a mental map in our minds of the terrain, dangerous places, and good places to hunt, that sort of thing. We knew it was best to keep away from humans, but had never so much as sniffed one before in our young lives. Plenty of stories gave us plenty of reasons to avoid those ones!
It was one day when we smelled rain that something wonderful happened! We also smelled a girl tiger! My friend immediately took the lead and we found her resting, licking blood from her muzzle. What a beautiful sight she was, so sleek and serene...
River: What happened next?
Jasper: Sorry, I was enjoying the remembering. Well, I cannot say she was glad to see us, we were lions, after all, and she had a kill to protect. And though the time of matings approached, she was not yet feeling that power. I shall say she sneered at us as unworthy creatures and beneath her notice, and she commanded us to move on.
And so we decided together to continue our travels. We had heard of a great forest, a forest within a forest, as you might say, where very special lions dwelled. Naturally we desired to be Very Special Lions ourselves! [joke] It was a very long journey, as much as a moon, before we realized we had found the place.
River: And what was it like?
Jasper: [A long, low moan.] It was death, it was all death. The humans had come before us. The great trees were felled, the stink of humans was everywhere.
That night we grieved with those who had died there in that naked, ruined forest. With the trees and the animals and the plants, we grieved…
[Jasper closes his eyes and starts to sway slightly back and forth, singing the song of those who were lost.]
Oh beauty, oh vibrant life, oh springing joy!
In this place of burdens, let the life return in its own time.
Too much to bear is this sorrow.
Too heavy lies the burden of death.
We sing our grief, we sing our sorrow,
We sing hope for the future, the future forest,
Which is greater than Man's greed.
And we opened our eyes, our amazed eyes, and saw the spirits of all those who had died, singing and laughing in the sunlight and the moonlight, joyful in death as they were in life, dragonflies playing in sunbeams. All were there just as they had been before Men came. And we were told: "Your hearts have been heard by the All Highest. This place will bloom again. Go in peace."
[Jasper opens his eyes, he is very intense.]
Do you see, do you understand? All hearts are one heart, a great heart, too great to be permanently harmed by the Darkness.
We are done.
Peggy River Singer is a heart-centered animal communicator, medium, faerie ally, Reiki practitioner, and lifelong writer. She combines her gift for communications with her psychic abilities to help create harmonious relationships among all who share the Earth. Connect by phone at 734-548-0194; and by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. She shares her experiences and insights on her blog, angelsfairiesandlife.wordpress.com.
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River: So, my sparkling little friend, is there anything you'd like to talk about?
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By Lenny Bass
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