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The Earth Path: Grounding Your Spirit in the Rhythms of Nature [Format Kindle]

5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)

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Présentation de l'éditeur

America's most renowned witch and eco–feminist offers a sequel to her bestselling classic The Spiral Dance, weaving together the latest findings in environmental science with magical spells, chants, meditations and group exercises to create the ultimate primer on our relationship to the earth.

From the earliest times, respecting our interdependent relationship with nature has been the first step toward spirituality. Earth, air, fire and water are the four elements worshiped in many indigenous cultures and celebrated in earth–based spiritualities such as Wicca. In The Earth Path, America's best–known witch offers readers a primer on how to open our eyes to the world around us, respect nature's delicate balance, and draw upon its tremendous powers.

Filled with inspiring meditations, chants, and blessings, it offers healing for the spirit in a stressed world and helps readers find their own sources of strength and renewal.

Will appeal to Starhawk's traditional Pagan, New Age, and feminist readership.

Young women newly interested in magic and witchcraft.

A new and growing generation of those involved in ecology

Biographie de l'auteur

Starhawk is the author of nine books, including her bestselling The Spiral Dance, The Pagan Book of Living and Dying, and Webs of Power, winner of the 2003 Nautilus Award for social change. She has an international reputation, and her works have been translated into many different languages. Starhawk is also a columnist for and ZNet. A veteran of progressive movements who is deeply committed to bringing the techniques and creative power of spirituality to political activism, she travels internationally, teaching magic, the tools of ritual, and the skills of activism. Starhawk lives part-time in San Francisco, in a collective house with her partner and friends, and part-time in a little hut in the woods in western Sonoma County, where she practices permaculture in her extensive gardens and writes.

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Commentaires client les plus utiles
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Par Cécile
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Un bouquin indispensable pour qui s'intéresse aux relations des humains avec les éléments dans la nature. C'est érudit mais jamais ennuyeux, plein d'humour, et les nombreux exercices et méditations proposés sont très bien conçus. Starhawk met son expérience et ses vastes connaissance à notre portée, nous permet de faire le lien entre ces domaines trop souvent séparés que sont l'écologie, les actions citoyennes et le travail avec les énergies. La répartition en cinq grands chapitres, un par élément, permet de faire le tour de la question. On sort de cette lecture avec un autre regard sur le monde qui nous entoure... et surtout sur notre marge de manoeuvre pour le faire changer. Un pilier de ma bibliothèque ! (Un seul bémol : pas un mot sur l'expérience de Perelandra. Dommage.)
Demande un minimum de maîtrise de l'anglais, mais le style de Starhawk, comme pour de nombreux auteurs américains, est simple et direct.
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 great book 17 août 2011
Par samobena
great book to explore your relation with each of the five elements.

Many exercises in each chapter will help you connect to each of the elements.
They are very inspiring to experience both alone or with a group.

For the first time with this book, the "fifth element" (ether, akasha...) made sense for me.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.5 étoiles sur 5  27 commentaires
50 internautes sur 50 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Spiritually & Practically Connecting with the Earth 23 mai 2005
Par M. Hart - Publié sur
One of the most widely read and respected authors in Wicca and Earth-based spirituality, Starhawk, has written no less than ten books on the subject. Her most recent book, "The Earth Path: Grounding Your Spirit in the Rhythms of Nature" that was published in 2004, is an amazing combination of spiritual, emotional, practical and even political aspects of Earth-based spirituality. Written in twelve chapters with ample footnotes and references, the first four chapters deal primarily with understanding and recognizing what is sacred in Earth-based spirituality: the Earth and all of its many components, from the land, the water and all living things from the smallest to the largest. The most important lesson here is to realize that the Earth is much more than its individual components, which runs counter to Western science and philosophy that tend to view things in a purely mechanistic and compartmental manner as exemplified by the seventeenth-century French philosopher René Descartes. Granted, great scientific understandings have been attained by this philosophy; but it fails in its understanding of emergent characteristics and patterns of complex systems as described elegantly by Fritjof Capra in his book "The Web of Life". However, where Fritjof Capra presents his book from a purely secular perspective, Starhawk expands this view into the spiritual aspects, including the realization that our ancestors aren't just humans, but also the myriad of single-celled creatures and bacteria that gave the Earth an oxygen-based atmosphere through the gifts of chlorophyll and photosynthesis. For without these, we would not exist.

The next aspect that Starhawk examines extensively is observation. If one is to learn how to read and understand Nature and what the Earth is speaking, one must learn how to listen to the birds, insects, plants, trees, the ground, the water, etc. To achieve this, Starhawk includes a number of meditative exercises focused on learning to understand a particular animal, plant, insect or even fungus. Some may not be interested in fungi, but Wicca and Earth-based spiritualities recognize the interconnectedness of all things, as well as the cycle of birth, death and rebirth. For without death, there would be no life and no rebirth. Fungi, which on the surface may not seem particularly spiritual, is at the heart of death and rebirth because it is fungi that break down dead matter into its essential elements so that they can be reused and renewed. A prime example is Starhawk's "Fertility and Decay" meditative exercise on pages 163 through 166. Starhawk's meditative observation techniques come in particularly useful for understanding each of the four elements (air, fire, water and earth, as well as spirit in the center) that are an inseparable part of Wicca and Earth-based spirituality. I also especially liked the blessing for each element that Starhawk wrote for each element at the end of each element's chapter.

Interlaced throughout the book, Starhawk includes writings from her personal journals involving her life, home and the areas surrounding her home. These include such things as the nearby rain-fed streams, building maintainable & reusable sources of energy, sharing seeds and plants with neighbors, eating organically-grown food and living harmoniously with the Earth, as opposed to constantly taking from and polluting the Earth as so many U.S. and international corporations have done. This is where the political aspects come into play as Starhawk addresses such groups as the World Trade Organization, whose policies were designed to ensure corporate profitability (including the patenting of life forms) at the expense of the environment and individuals. Starhawk makes no distinction between the political and spiritual when it comes to the Earth because pollution, clear-cutting, the introduction of genetically-modified organisms, the use of herbicides, insecticides, pesticides and other synthetic chemicals in the environment are all-too-often harmful to all life, the environment and the Earth. To this end, Starhawk makes various recommendations for the various little things that each individual can do to help the Earth.

Overall, I found Starhawk's book "The Earth Path: Grounding Your Spirit in the Rhythms of Nature" to be well written and an extremely useful resource that deserves a very high rating of 5 out of 5 stars. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in having a more intimate relationship with the Earth, the elements and the many creatures that share this planet with humanity.
41 internautes sur 42 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Witchcraft reaches a new level of maturity 25 octobre 2004
Par Tzaddi - Publié sur
Starhawk has been a great favorite of mine ever since reading her book "Dreaming the Dark" for the first time many years ago. And she continues to impress and inspire me with each new book she brings out. "The Earth Path" is a definite step forward into a very mature view of the practice of witchcraft. It stands out from all others I have read -and I read a lot. In "The Earth Path", Starhawk moves away from the usual focus on rituals and meditation, and instead grounds the book in practical ideas of observation and creation, and her writing is as always witty, intelligent and politically informed. Her wiccan spirituality here focuses on learning to see the beauty and magic in the natural world. Rather than filtering nature through a goddess mythology to gain some esoteric appreciation, she shows how by taking the time to observe and reflect on the patterns and structures around us with open eyes, we cannot help but to be awed by the magic that moves grows dies and is reborn again everywhere we look. Once again Starhawk, I thank you for sharing your vision with us.
29 internautes sur 29 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Caroline Tully review 27 août 2005
Par Caroline Tully - Publié sur
If you are looking for something to read that will change your life you cannot go past Starhawk's latest book "The Earth Path" which is her best so far. Whereas her previous book "Webs of Power" was about explaining the international global justice movement and what it is fighting for, in this new book Starhawk focuses on the local intimate landscape and gets down and dirty with permaculture. Permaculture is a holistic method of horticulture, agriculture and landscape design, originally invented in Australia by Bill Mollison, which seeks to establish a kind of perpetual, self-sustaining `wild' bounty. Why is this important for Witches? Starhawk wants to emphasise how so much of modern magick is abstracted into intellectual concepts, nature is idealised, romanticised and despite our claims to "worship" nature, most urban Witches are really not particularly familiar with just what "nature" actually is. Starhawk urges us to dispense with tokenism regarding Witchcraft concepts such as the four elements and the Goddess and God, and instead become cognisant of the real elements - real tangible fire, water, air and earth, real sky, real plants, real land. How does water actually work in your environment? What are its cycles, what is its source? What is the relationship of fire to you, to your environment? How does fire behave out in nature compared to on a candle wick? Starhawk has an enthralling story-telling ability which makes this book really interesting, plus to help us to observe and participate in grounded reality she provides eighty exersises, meditations and rituals. Personally, I'm a huge fan of seeking truth in nature even if what we find there may not always be pleasant or good for our egos. I believe that nature is both the source and goal of Witchcraft and that we owe it to ourselves to rend the veil of illusion and stare boldly at the Goddess Earth in all her incomprehensible glory as Starhawk advocates. This book is a boon for beginners and jaded old-timers as well. Highly recommended.
23 internautes sur 24 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 What must we know to be in "right relationship" with Earth? 16 janvier 2005
Par Alice Who - Publié sur
Earth Path is largely a discussion of nature, ecology and environmental sustainability/stewardship. It's a welcomed and wanted addition to the Earth Spiritualist/Pagan library. Ironically, in religious and spiritual traditions believing the Earth to be sacred and in which holiday, ritual, and wisdom are founded in the rhythms of nature, too many of us aren't well-schooled in the science and ecology of those rhythms. Sure, there are clues in our liturgy, symbols, metaphors, much of our ritual... all beautiful elements of Pagan culture, but not the whole story, in my opinion. As Tori Amos sings, "I think the good book is missing some pages." Or perhaps... the Earth, herself is the "good book" and she's missing some readers! :) It isn't just a problem of Earth Spiritualist culture... education and awareness about ecology and sustainability are not yet standard, stable parts of public education. I've even seen environmental science teachers have to fight for their right to remain in curriculum, threatened alongside other disciplines like art and music that are tragically considered expendable.

Earth Path is a vital effort to raise awareness and introduce readers to a study of ecology with Earth Spiritualist sensibilities. What must we know and what can we do to become better citizens of the Earth community, to be in right relationship, both physically and spiritually, with sacred Earth? How do we expand beyond anthropocentric interpretations of her ecology? We must do our best to learn her many languages, her curves and crevices, how she breathes, what tones her muscles and makes her bones strong, what she likes for breakfast, and what she doesn't: what makes her stressed and unhealthy, what gives her a yeast infection, what makes her hair fall out. We must study and learn from our past and current generations of human relationship with her, from what has worked and what hasn't, as well as how we might improve our relationship into the future. The more intimately we can understand, perhaps the more difficult (or less easy) to betray her best interest, whether by short/narrow-sighted human self-interest or by accidents of well-meaning ignorance.

Earth Path offers 70+ rituals, meditations, and exercises, a chapter on observation, a chapter proposing "Earth-Centered values" among Pagans, and a chapter about "What Every Pagan Should Know About Evolution," which could be helpful for navigating the current political and religious debates about the subject in science education. The book also organizes information and practical exercises around chapters focusing on Air, Fire, Water, Earth, and Center. For example, in the "Air" chapter, there is a discussion of birds that includes info. about learning the five voices of songbirds: the call, the song, the feeding plea, male-to-male agression, and the alarm call. This section is followed with one titled "What the Birds are Saying About You." Wouldn't we love to know! :) The Air chapter also discusses topics like insects, microclimates, global warming, wind, weather-working, and more. Woven through, there is information and inspiration for developing sustainable culture and community and for aligning personal and group practices like Sabbat celebrations with the goings-on of nature and season in your area.

The more we understand, the better we can work as Changers, to "Live in the world today the way [we] want it be in the future." (Alice Walker) With Earth Path, Starhawk offers a solution-oriented text for learning more about the "nature" of Earth Spirituality.
22 internautes sur 23 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Really, Really Practical Magic 1 décembre 2004
Par Jennifer M - Publié sur
In between her writing ventures, I seem to forget why and how much I admire Starhawk's work. Then her next book or essay is released and I am reminded all over again of the reasons her philosophy grounds me in the profoundly sane dream of a better future.

Her most recent book, The Earth Path: Grounding Your Spirit in the Rhythms of Nature (HarperSanFrancisco, 2004) serves as a guide to developing awareness of the most basic (and, as such, perhaps most elusive) elements of the natural world. Retreating somewhat from the frenetic pace of the streets in Webs of Power: Notes from the Global Uprising (New Society Publishers, 2002), The Earth Path takes us to Starhawk's home in the Cazadero Hills and through a journey of observing earth, air, fire, water, and spirit - the elements that sustain all life.

The opening chapter uses the fairy tale of the Isle of Birds to illustrate the author's desired outcome for this journey. In the story, a king sends his beloved son to learn the language of birds. After 21 years, the prince learns to hear, to understand, and to respond. For some inexplicable reason, this angers the king (perhaps he expected his son to learn marksmanship?), but the moral of the tale (and subsequently the entire book) is the importance of deep awareness and the simple fact that such awareness requires time and attention.

In addition to the author's stated intentions, The Earth Path serves as a wake-up call to Pagans that our spirituality involves a tangible and intimate relationship with nature, not just a theoretical acknowledgment of it. The book gently chastises Pagans who have allowed their relationship with the earth to slip into the abstract - perhaps for fear of getting cold, dirtying ritual garb, encountering insects, or simply because our culture places very little value on activities that foster deep awareness. As a result, few Pagans have "time spent talking to trees" penciled into our day planners. A tragedy for us as well as the trees! Indeed, Starhawk takes the whole culture to task perhaps more for keeping us so ignorant of the ecological processes on which our lives depend. As she notes, it's entirely possible (even common) to be educated all the way to a doctorate level with no more than a 4th-grade understanding of photosynthesis and often no education at all as to how our local ecologies sustain themselves nor how our communities can sustain themselves without interrupting this ecological self-regulation.

Readers who have followed Starhawk since she first published her best-known work, The Spiral Dance (Harper and Row, 1979), will delight in watching her evolve in her spirituality and its application. Throughout what has become a veritable canon, we watch her grow from an idealistic girl to a mature woman whose strength and wisdom has only aggregated over the years. The Earth Path will not disappoint her fans and students. It remains as accessible and unpretentious as her previous writing, with the honesty and emotional vulnerability that has always left her readers feeling we know her. Of course, it also includes the insightful, ironic, and sometimes piercing wit for which she is known and loved. Do not ever pick up a Starhawk book if you expect to come away smugly comforted in your personal righteousness! While her ideas indeed comfort and ground, they do not bolster an I'm-ok-you're-ok placidity. She relentlessly challenges our imaginations to stretch upward and outward.

In fact, her latest book contends that constriction of the imagination shapes our perception and awareness. For illustration, Starhawk tells the story of the 2003 Sacramento protests against biotech and industrial agriculture when police confiscated buckets of seedballs, believing them to be projectile weapons. The irony of the situation is both humorous and sad, but well exemplifies the principle that what a person is able to imagine creates categories for making sense of the world - the broader one's imagination grows, the greater variety of things that will make sense. In the rigidly-controlling hierarchies of our culture (such as law enforcement), where constriction of the imagination facilitates predictability of behavior and uniformity of obedience to command, a greater number of things become nonsense and likely to engender fear before understanding.

One key to expanding the imagination is, according to Starhawk, ceasing to care what others think, creating a space with the freedom to think about anything at all. As Pagans, we are in a privileged position to do this since we already exist on the fringes of the "respectable" institutions of Western society, such as academia.

I found myself both disagreeing and feeling challenged by this idea. On the one hand, many Pagans have worked hard to bring earth-based religion under the umbrella of "respectability" - establishing Pagan traditions as legally-recognized churches, securing seats on various ecumenical councils, organizing Pagans in military and police ranks, educating the courts, employers, and general public as to the relatively "normal" lives of most Pagans, right down to changing the dictionary definition of the word "witch". Cultural behemoths, like academia, are, indeed, slow to change. But they do change and I don't believe we're as far removed from academic respectability as Starhawk suggests, especially considering that many of today's Pagan leaders are highly educated. I see academia as similar to the places Starhawk talks about where two ecosystems meet and their diversity creates a mutual benefit and richness for both.

On the other hand, this question of respectability is a good reminder not to compromise what sets us apart from our predominantly alienating and exploitative culture. Religious movements tend to start out loosely organized, culturally marginalized, and socially radical. As they gain numbers, prominence, and respectability, a vicious circle of compromise to gain acceptance is set into motion (usually with a hard lurch to the political right; the Mormons are America's most recent example of this phenomenon). Starhawk's words challenge us not to compromise our values or who we are for public acceptance.

Overall, The Earth Path gives us a practical ethos of questioning how any given action will impact the whole, using deep attention to each element as a guide. Interwoven with this ethical paradigm are some treats new to Starhawk's readers. The text includes the clearest explanation of grounding and anchoring I've ever heard. The author's courage in defending meat-eating (is there a hotter topic anywhere in Pagandom?) is testament to her honest and principled character - the reader may not agree with her, but after taking such a risk, it's impossible not to trust her. Each chapter tackling an element provides useful metaphors for translating that element's nature into principles that guide our lives. For example, Air can teach us how to transform force rather than wall it off or be blown about by it. Fire is a metaphor for manifesting will from a small group of enthusiasts all the way up to the transformation of larger structures. Each chapter includes delightful lessons in permaculture that tantalize the reader to learn more. Starhawk's theory of Gaian Evolution, outlined in Chapter Four, has the potential to change our existing paradigms with the same explosive force as Charles Darwin.

At times, the book's intended audience is a bit unclear. Much of the language and ideas seem aimed for the Pagan community. Even as early as The Spiral Dance and Truth or Dare (HarperSanFrancisco, 1988), Starhawk was moving beyond the boilerplate, Paganism 101 fare of much of Pagan literature, filling a void for Pagans who had long ago learned to cast circles and needed weightier ideas to sink their teeth into. However, at other times, the text slips into explanations of the simplest Pagan history and theology. I found the history of the witch burnings a bit incongruent and a subject that has simply been done to death, with conflicting data, in practically every Pagan book ever published. Similarly, the basic explanation of the Sabbats is probably redundant for most readers and, for anyone needing that basic information, the rest of the book will likely be confusing.

In the end though, such minutiae is inconsequential. This is easily the best non-fiction I've read in 2004 and I encourage readers to find their favorite outdoor spot to curl up with The Earth Path and allow it to open their attention to the life cycle around us that is so important and so pervasive that it is too easily forgotten. For those returning to Starhawk's work, The Earth Path will be a welcome addition to their collection. For those who have not yet had the pleasure, I encourage you to run, not walk, to introduce yourselves to the challenging work of one of the most important philosophers of our time.
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