There’s nothing quite like the energy of fire.
Topangans know firsthand how impactful the quick, seemingly insignificant gesture of one small cigarette butt thrown out the car window can be to an entire town. So, we’re careful because we care about this beautiful land and animals, and our wonderful friends and neighbors.
And though we certainly don’t want to invite the energy of intense fire into our sweet canyon, it is important to remember that it is part of nature. Many fires are natural occurrences. Nature herself demands that things get burned down, so that new growth can happen. It can seem like a brutal and unkind process. Mother Nature is a neutral teacher. She’s impartial to whose land it is; she just knows that it is time for one cycle to end so another can begin. Even as I share this, I want to not share it because it seems unkind and not compassionate, but it is the truth. I’m not saying anything new or revolutionary here, but I am simply reminding us that it is the natural cycle of life and death and that nature is neutral. Because it does become quite hard to remember this concept of neutrality when it is your house or your mom’s house that just burned down. Luckily, we are blessed with such a strong and active community. If you ever need to rebuild, rest assured there will be many local hands and hearts there with you.
It’s also important to remember that we are nature, and what happens in our external experience is often also happening in a different, but similar ways inside of us. Most of us have heard the myth of “the phoenix rising” where this stunning and colorful bird lives for hundreds of years at a time. At some point, the bird will set its own self on fire, ending its life. From its own ashes, a new young Phoenix is born. The symbols associated with the phoenix are death and rebirth, renewal, resurrection, fire, and ashes. The phoenix rising myth reminds us that the energy of fire is multifaceted and is also powerful in helping us to rise and create! Having to rebuild yourself or your life will literally or metaphorically “light a fire” under your butt, helping you to have that fire energy to create something out of nothing.
How many times in your life have you felt like your entire world has completely fallen apart and that you feel you have to completely recreate yourself again? Gosh, I feel like I’m constantly in this cycle of death and resurrection, because I am! We all are! And as much as it can be challenging to remember it’s not personal, it really is just a cycle of life. We are all powerful phoenixes.
Even though endings often feel painful, they are necessary because they clear the path for new growth. The trees literally feed on the ashes of the previous trees that birthed them. The soil is fertile with ancestors who want you to grow into the best, most expansive, most loving version of you yet.
“This is not your destruction. This is your birth.”
I’ll leave you with the full poem by Zoe Skylar.
“For a star to be born,
there is one thing that must happen:
a gaseous nebula must collapse.
So collapse. Crumble.
This is not your destruction.
This is your birth.”