If you need further evidence that environmental toxicity has serious health consequences, the NYTimes reported last weekend on a study that linked high levels of air pollution with lower birth weight babies.
Low birth weight is a powerful negative indicator – it is associated with an array of health problems later in life – from higher rates of disease to less lifelong achievement.
This is a story that I really can’t see the bright side of – except that perhaps to contribute to the growing awareness that we are all connected. No one gets out of this. Environmental activism is really the sane response to this story.
I’ve been reading shamanic writer/teacher Sandra Ingerman’s Medicine for the Earth over the past few months as part of my apprenticeship in Plant Spirit Healing. Ms. Ingerman says we can transmute toxicity in the earth through a process that begins with cleaning up our own internal dialogue. My apprenticeship with herbalist/plant spokesperson Pam Montgomery introduced me to the shamanic paradigm, and I have to say, as a yogini, one of the things that I love about the shamanic tradition is this aspect of coming into a unitive state as the first step in being a force for healing in the world. That unitive state is a version of yoga! I’ve noticed that my plant spirit healing work has helped me deepen my yoga practice – I’m more connected, as I dive inside with my contemplative work, to the living world around me – my internal landscape is broader and feels more deeply woven into the fabric of this magnificent earth.
So as I flounder myself with what to do in response to this story – how do I get more active – I’m thinking the first steps are to continue to slow up for my own internal dialogue, which can get pretty grim at times, clean that out, and practice the energy hygiene my teacher Pam taught me, as well as yogic clearing. Then for now my job is to speak. To do my best to amplify this warning that shows up in our own very bodies, that we are out of balance.
I believe that we can heal the earth, and ourselves, through waking up, honing our intention, and following our intention into the action that is our lifestyles.