A Time to Reconnect to What It Is to Be Human

By Tom Cowan, M.D.

Your Support Has Been a Profound Blessing

As we approach this season of giving thanks and the upcoming holy nights, it is impossible not to realize that this is probably the most unusual Thanksgiving season in the history of this nation.  Rather than gathering to sing, laugh, and yes, even cry and argue (what else are families for), we are all wondering on some level what is happening to our world, our community, our lives.  Some of our dear friends and customers have experienced significant loss during this past year — the loss of jobs, of economic security, of friends and family members, of feeling a sense of belonging in previously safe circles. We are all a bit lost right now, searching for a new way forward. 

I have been in the privileged position during these past six months of being able to talk about and even fight for a new vision of the way forward.  My vision is not about creating some sort of technocratic dystopia, but about reconnecting. My vision is for a reconnection on many levels, first with our selves, then with friends and family, and then with the wider community in which we live. For me, the basis of this connection is the realization that we are human beings, not machines, and as such we are deeply embedded in the rhythms and movements of all that we call nature. We are beings of the soil, the earthworms, the sun, the earth, the moon, the sky and all the angelic beings who populate our world, unseen to virtually all of us.  They are also our community, the foundation of our home.  

Some want to disconnect us from nature, disconnect us from that which gives us life. That is not my vision. I want more connection, a deeper sense of thanks and gratitude than ever before. The biggest blessings I have received this year are the cards, letters, and notes I have received from you, our dear friends, customers, and fellow travelers. I have received encouragements and best wishes and even sometimes helpful suggestions and advice from thousands of you. I feel blessed and speechless from this outpouring of support. 

Despite these big changes, it never felt as if I was going through an “identity crisis,” as we hit the ground running in our new home.   Now, happily settled in the Northeast (the photo is of a recent sunset outside our back windows), we are about to fence off an acre or so garden so we can put in vegetable beds, a greenhouse, a small orchard, a chicken coop, a couple of sheep (or alpaca) and a guard-dog house.  We have new friends, new projects and new hopes and dreams for the remainder of our lives.  

Stay well, my friends, let’s not give up.  Together, we can do this, even if most of the time we have no clue what the “this” is.

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