If you're a teacher or parent who is paying attention to these sorts of things you've probably noticed that the Moon has a real tangible effect on some children (!) and if you are really paying attention you've probably noticed it's effect on you too - maybe your sleep or mood. Our bodies are over 70% water so (knowing the Moon's power to effect our oceans and tides) it really is no wonder we watery humans feel it as well.
This blog entry is for those of you who are wishing to cultivate nature connection in your children and yourself ... I'd like to first bring you back a couple years with me to a huge open soccer field down by the river here in Canmore. Some locals had spent the last days carving a labyrinth out of snow. It was a magical night with candles lighting the way through the labyrinth. Together (myself, my children, and our community) we walked the labyrinth under a star strewn clear Full Moon night. It was the first Full Moon of January and we were dressed in all our layers to stay warm. We walked and as we walked we sang this song to the Moon.
"Neesa Neesa Neesa (2x) Gaiwey Ho (2x)" - we sang in rounds as well as just over and over again - sometimes it turned into a hum. Really it is a chant more than a song - it has a deeply nourishing soul quality to it ...
Neesa is the name from the Seneca First Nations - it translates to Grandmother Moon. Gaiwey Ho is addressing the Creator of all that is. The feeling behind these words is what I enjoy most - there's a tenderness and a sense of sweet reverence.
This is a simple song to bring to your children to support their relationship with the natural world. It's rhythmic soothing nature has a meditative carrying quality to it. This year out of the blue new words fell into the rhythm of this chant for me, "Luna Luna Luna (2x) Carry me home." (2x)
Having spent much time with our young wise ones in nature in the last 10 years I see that we are born knowing and feeling deeply this intimacy and sweet easy sense of connection with Nature. How do we keep their innate sense of belonging and connection to the natural world alive in the busyness of our lives?
I think it starts in the heart and in relationship ... in the soft, unguarded parts of ourselves ... I think it starts with the little ways we relate and speak - internally or externally to the world around us. I think it starts with simple habits/rituals - seeds we plant when the children are young.
Song and story grow strong roots in childhood. Speaking of and to the elements in Nature with a sweet tenderness as in this song - using personal pronouns and addressing as famlly, Grandmother, Brother, Sister - is one very simple way we help our children not forget what they know (and reteach ourselves) of our truly intimate connection to the world that breathes and shines and sighs outside our four walls.
"May you know that you are beloved on this Earth."