Apr 23, 2012

The Ultimate Recycler

There was an episode of Thorn Coyle’s Elemental Castings a while back, where she interviewed someone who spoke of psychopomps and who specifically mentioned jackals.  I wish I could remember the exact episode and the guest.  The conversation, of course, was in relation to the Egyptian god Anubis (Anpu) who was a god of the underworld.  As the popularity of Osirus as underworld god rose, Anubis was later relegated to transition work such as embalming/mummification and overseeing the weighing of the heart against the feather of Ma’at.  The guiding of human souls to the scales of Ma’at was attributed to both him and his brother Wepwawet.

Thorn’s guest said something about jackals which has stuck with me since I heard the episode that day.  She said that jackals eat that which no other animal can find use in.  Long after the carnivores have finished their meals, the jackal, with its fantastical digestive system, can consume and process decay and turn it into energy.

As someone who had for most of their life felt damaged, this was a profound moment.  The thought that something out there could take the most broken, ruined parts of me and turn them into something useful was astonishing.

I could blame religion or a sensitive disposition or a brutally critical parent for my belief that I was wrong in some way and all those things have a seed of truth in them, but at some point the belief became mine and I nurtured it.  I understood as I grew older, that I wasn’t really broken.  I wasn’t damaged in some un-repairable way.  But it takes a while to loose a root that deep.  It was a fortunate day, almost two years ago, when he showed up and started digging.

He first appeared as a rather large presence standing behind me in meditation.  There was a considerable sense of protection.  His calm demeanor and substance were comforting.  I was immediately enamoured.

Since then, I’ve had lessons on death and transition and rebirth.  Lessons on repurposing that which seems unusable.  Lessons on letting go.  I understand now that I am not broken.

Those parts of me that I let decay are now being reborn, and those that I will not use again are being recycled into something new.

Hail the jackal - the ultimate recycler!


Anonymous said...

I got goosebumps reading this. How wonderful and what a relief you must feel!

Jeanne said...

Wonderful post! We should all aspire to be more like the jackal and take what is dead or decayed within us and remake it - recycle it - into something beautiful.
Thank you. This post has given me much food for thought.....

Linda in New Mexico said...

I have for a very long time been a silent reader of your wisdom and from time to time have commented but today..........this post has touched a part of me that I thought I had carefully wrapped and put away and stored for so many years. Not forgotten mind you, but ignored. Now I have a glimmer that there is a way to "recycle" this and not carry it any more. Thank you Rue. Oma Linda

HappyCrone said...

you continue to amaze me with your knowledge, well done you!

Sophie said...

this is beautiful. thank you

My Grama's Soul said...

Thank you so very much for stopping by to say hi. I have now found you.....your post was so very "right on" for me also....isn't it amazing that the human soul is so very strong and can withstand even the strongest abuse.

Have a wonderful day new friend.


Jessica Cangiano said...

You share so much of your soul and heart with us in your posts, dear Rue, thank you for letting us know you so intimately and beautifully.

Many thanks, too, for your comment on my post about Pantone's 2012 colour of the year. Lucky you getting to grow pumpkins! I should rather love to give that a spin myself one day if I have the garden space for it.

Wishing you a serene & lovely day,

Bogaman said...

I thought you were impressive from the get-go. It's surprising the things we keep to ourselves. This post shows your wisdom.

PS: Thanks for the dandelion tip. X.

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