Years ago, deep into my own spiritual emergence, I had startlingly prescient dreams; in one, the words, "violent emergency" reverberated through my head. It was a violent emergence; birth is fierce. There is an ocean of difference, however, between Nature's ferocity and that which is deliberately inflicted by human beings with their own agendas.

Theologian and author Thomas Moore, PhD, says that, "Deep in the etymology of 'violence' is a strong Latin word, vis. It is the power in nature that we sense in the surging sea and the growth of grass. In our experiences of violence we witness the vain attempt of life to push itself into existence and visibility. This is a sexual power. Sex is not just about making bodies but making souls as well. The people of the world need every opportunity to be creative and visible. They need to ENJOY life, not just survive. Without that opportunity, they will turn to violence, in spite of themselves."

We tend to go through life anesthetized against our own yearning. The call to claim our power can be terrifying, because it means accepting our invitation to the Dance. And most of us have forgotten how to dance — if indeed we ever knew. We find it easier to lash out in anger: rage, the undiscovered country. If being "outrageous" means getting the rage out, Americans are black belts. Having lost touch with the wilderness within, we savage the Earth and each other in an effort to combat our loneliness.

War is the grand expression of this misdirected energy. It's akin to our ability, or lack of it, to harness the power of the sun. Yoked to our solar egg, we could shine on in all our ecological radiance for millennia. Yoking means union, but we're used to living the more limiting definition of bondage. Trussed to our desperation, we sigh, "That's life!" Since interdependence — becoming what Kenny Ausubel has termed "Bioneers," or biological pioneers, co-creating with Nature — feels so foreign, we stay (un)comfortably in the familiar, pump up the volume, and wearily watch as the world turns.

There is a way out: it's through. The trees are gods and goddesses who in their stillness keep the Earth's counsel; the animals are our allies. We can commune with a snake or a sea lion as easily as with the people we call kin. The key lies in reclaiming our wildness — not as violence, but as an abiding, sensuous connection with Nature. Instead of experiencing everything at one remove, we can allow it to enter us.

My Inannic odyssey delivered me deeply into this truth. In illness and vulnerability, I threw my arms around trees and sobbed out my grief, feeling their loving embrace. I began talking to crows, paying tribute to their visceral wisdom in a poem that concluded, "A coded conversation/In guttural cries/Opens my eyes/And lifts me higher." Stunned from exhaustion, I'd never lived in such clarity. With my brain on an extended vacation, I was forced to access a more primitive part of my being, to participate organically in the instinctual world, not merely watch.

This is how peace begins: by singing the wild symphony of Nature back into our cells, feeling the music of the spheres in our marrow, embodying the feminine creative principle. By raising our resonance, we become "the vessel which can contain all blessing," as one ancient text describes peace. This is also how we heal our bodies, and the body of Gaia: "immune" means sacrosanct, inviolate, whole. In celebrating all life, we pulse a radiating joy that resurrects our daily dance. And you can't wage war while dancing.

We've entered a new era. It is only in recent memory that strong antiwar sentiment (Iraq, Vietnam) has held sway. For much of human history, war has been an acceptable means of "protecting our interests," "keeping the world safe for democracy," or any number of other platitudes. If thousands, perhaps millions, of innocents had to die in the process, well, they were war heroes. And the villagers in other countries, slaughtered in the name of whatever diety one invoked, deserved death because they were "the enemy."

Jeannette Rankin, the first woman elected to the US House of Representatives and the only member of Congress to vote against US entry into both World Wars, once declared, "You can no more win a war than you can win an earthquake."

She makes an enduring point. Did anyone "win" the Indonesian 'quake and tsunami? Are we "winning" the war in Iraq?

What's really going on here? What is the higher purpose of the impulse to violence we all harbor within, to a greater or lesser degree?

Fire and water are complements; harmonized, they elevate consciousness and catalyze healing. I sang these words often during my own "dark night of the soul" journey. Instead of the old, tired Dominator matrix, using firepower in an "us" vs. "them" scenario, we need to embrace the true fire within us, and discover the myriad ways to channel this potent energy for good. Becoming a spiritual warrior is a profile in courage (which means heart.) Spirit asks, "Have you the conviction to stand by your heart? Are you willing to transmute war in the alchemical fire?" The fire within is the perfect peace of God/Goddess/Creator/Innate Intelligence, which expresses outwardly as enthusiasm (from the Greek, "possessed by God"), inwardly as a calm awareness.

We've mastered communicating from our wounds. Now we're in a pivotal age, creating a context in which it's safe to share who we are in love, in truth, in well-being. Our collective task is to marry scared and scarred with sacred, density with destiny, jaded with jubilant; to become inclusive not exclusive. Because none of us is truly free until all of us are.

This is one of the meta gifts of these disasters (which means, "against the stars"): they bring us face to face with The Other, in our psyches and out in the world, so we can see how they're one and the same. All anyone can do is introduce you to yourself. So as you look in the mirror of your brother's or sister's face, be kind to your own confusion, criticism, sadness, or fear. Acknowledging your strand in the evolutionary web is, in itself, a giant step on the path to peace.

It's time for each of us to create a personal crucible: a safe container for our energies. Envision your inner chalice. Then place this cup, brimming with fiery potential and the waters of life, into your heart, where it will become a perpetual font of inspiration and renewal — and, in time, of unconditional love.

As the Maya say, In Lakéch: I am another yourself.

© Copyright 2006-2012 by Amara Rose. All rights reserved.

Author's Bio: 

Amara Rose is a "midwife for the soul" offering life purpose guidance, wisdom circles, e-courses, talks, CDs, and an inspirational monthly newsletter, What Shines. Subscribe through Amara may be reached at or 800-862-0157. For further metaphysical musings, visit her blog,