I see skies of blue, clouds of white,
The bright blessèd day,
The dark sacred night
And I think to myself: What a wonderful world…
Bob Thiel, George David Weiss + George Douglas
On a really good day it takes 2 ½ hours to get from Montreal to Heartroot Farm. Factors such as black ice or blizzards, getting stuck behind logging trucks, tractors or school buses, and stops for gas or to pee, to eat or to rest weary eyes, have sometimes conspired to double that. But I’m not complaining.
However exhausting it can be at times, I love the drive. The domesticated flatlands of the St.Lawrence River valley cede their monoculture monotony to ever-higher ranges of ancient mountains and their ever-wilder inhabitants. The trip ends as we hit the highest point of the Route des Sommets in the village of Audet (St.Hubert-de-Audet, officially), then head south, just over the lip of the ridge toward the Maine border. This is a land of lumberjacks, pot growers, organic raw cheese producers and horse traders – of healers, truckers, ecologists, artists and other lonesome folk.
Though I am sometimes sleepy, I never get tired of the drive – maybe it’s all those planets in Sagittarius…. Usually happily alone or well-accompanied by Attila the Husky and/or that national treasure, CBC Radio, weather conditions either permit my mind to wander at will or require intent one-pointedness of thought; I’m never bored.
“The Best of Louis Armstrong” was playing as my son handed the car over to me today – I was already off the island of Montreal and well on my way by the time the CD cycled back again to the first track: “A Wonderful World”. I’ve rarely listened to this song without crying – this time, I cranked up the volume so I could really hear and for once learn the lyrics properly. What I heard astounded me:“The bright blessèd day”. “The dark sacred night”. Holy smoke! The words hit my heart and surprised sobs jumped out of my chest. “Blessèd“: has been blessed by something…someone. “Sacred”: a state of holiness – that which blesses…. Such deep truths were woven into these two simple phrases – how could I have missed them, all these years…?
From the velvet blackness of the Void, the matrix of all existence, the zero-point of infinite energetic potential, manifest reality unfolds…. The images that I had received strongly this Christmas came again to mind – a birthing mother becomes one with Heaven and Earth – with the Void and manifest reality. This is what we call the “birth bubble”, and is a time when energies are so profoundly altered that no one can remain untouched – all in attendance at a birth can feel this connection to the Infinite, regardless of the circumstances of the labour and delivery – regardless of the awareness of those involved.
The birthing woman and the conscious human being are able to experience this same state of Grace, abandoning the personality as a drop of water melting into the ocean, and so becoming a channel – a conduit – of Life. The child in a consciously sacred birth is therefore born fully incarnate – in a state of Oneness – in complete union of spirit and body. This is the Christic state symbolized by the cross within the circle – that of full incarnation: Spirit alive and One with every cell of one’s physical being. As the Feminine (the Earth, the body, Mother, all of material reality) is honoured, as birth and incarnation become consciously sacred and holy (the dark sacred night) , we assume our responsibility and, I believe, our destiny as humans – and our days become bright and blessed…..
Stuck behind a particularly slow-moving truck, I was driving at a speed that allowed me to really look around at the land I was passing and to notice the deer, barely visible in the dim light and the camouflage of the fields.
“…and I think to myself: What a wonderful world….”