I sometimes struggle to wrap my mind around the concept of wholeness. Yeah, I know, I chose it, but I can’t always articulate what I mean by it.
Earth is a materially closed system. Everything that was, is, and will be on this planet is made of the same stuff, endlessly broken down and reassembled in new forms. That’s one of the most incredible facts I know. We are literally our Ancestors remade–all the Ancestors, from the birth of this sacred planet forward. I love that. I honor it.
Wholeness to me also means repair. Repairing myself, repairing communities, repairing the world. True repair means first acknowledging what’s broken. No singing “We Are the World” together and then moving on like everything’s great and we’re all one now. I have to face the harms done, both by me and mine and to us. I have to learn when and how to make reparations for what I’ve done, when and how to demand accountability for what I’ve experienced, and, unfortunately, when and how to excise the parts that can’t or won’t be healed, so that what remains can be whole.
I don’t know that I’ll ever attain full wholeness in my own life, let alone in the whole world. But I have the whole world as a role model, and that inspires me to keep trying every day.
Image: Modern Kintsugi style gold repair on blue pottery bowl with orange and white flowers. Bowl and photo by artist Ruthann Hurwitz via Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0).