Updated: Feb 13
“You are conditioned to be in desperate need of a future.” Alan Watts
In order for salvation and savior narratives to sustain there must always be a future that is in peril. A future time outside of now that needs to be saved. This means our imaginations and movements must be forward looking. And in that forward-ing it’s common to look up as if angels might descend to save us from ourselves.
But what if angels aren’t perched in ethereal sky-tops, and are more like mountain lions crouched low in the grass just off to the side where our gaze seems to dare not go? Ready and waiting in horizontal and peripheral landscapes for the chance to leap out at our unsuspecting lives. And in those moments of startling terror we are reminded that what matters is right here through that electrifying jolt that strikes the ground between birth and death.
I’m not suggesting visionary futility, nor that we shouldn’t dream. Futurism isn’t inherently linear, either. Imagining what might be can invite us into our direct and emergent experiences.
Experiences that terra-fy (terra - earth).
Right here is where we can wonder with willow trees, dance with dragonflies, breathe with bumblebees, sing with snakes, play with opossums.
Right here is where we can feel the tender tremble of our precarious existence, and care with the lives and lands that claim our belonging.
Right here is where we can feel the vast articulations of pleasure and pain, and feel ourselves dizzied when those worlds of experience seem, at times, to be indistinguishable.
With no future to save all manner of possibilities open up and out around us. Much like a flower spreading its petals in sensual delight awaiting that enveloping buzz of pollinators humming worlds in and out of existence.
And if all manner of possibility lives in this fluid and finite moment that’s tethered to our impermanence, then not only were/are our lives present in the actions and absence of our ancestors, so too are future ones present and absent within our own.
What if there is no future to save AND your very life matters because you exist right here, right now?
That’s at least how I understand my own enwebbed, ancestral life.