Earthquakes and Elements

Last night we were sitting down eating dinner, except for Dryst who was still at the varsity soccer game a few towns away, and we suddenly heard – and felt – a very loud rumbling sound. My first thought was that our furnace was blowing up, and we stood up to head for the front door. Quester opened the basement door to check, but it wasn’t the furnace. I thought perhaps one of the huge trees in the yard had fallen, but ElvenTiger and Quester pointed out that the rumbling was still going on, though at a lower volume. “It’s an earthquake!” announced Quester. My question, “So what do we do?!”

But it was soon over. I was left trembling and with a strong urge to check on my loved ones. We soon checked on my Aunt next door, and called my parents, who had experienced the same thing. Everyone was okay, and there was no damage that we could see. BlackLion checked online and found that there had been a four-point-something (the reporting has changed) earthquake, with the epicenter just three miles from us! This is here in southern Maine, not an area known for quakes.

Soon there were mocking posts all over Facebook – pictures of overturned patio chairs, with the caption, “we will rebuild!” While these were funny, and I understand that this was a very mild occurrence compared to what others around the globe have experienced, I don’t think it was a non-event. Our culture’s conception of “news” is that someone got hurt, or property was damaged. But I don’t find that a satisfying criteria.

To me, the earthquake was an amazing demonstration of the power of Earth! We like to think of the ground beneath us as stable and unmoving. But truly, the tectonic plates beneath us are in motion all the time, just as the planet itself is hurtling through space at a fantastic speed. When “the Earth moves,” as the saying goes, something powerful and transformational has happened. How are these energies connected to the personal and community transformations that are ongoing this autumn? And then there are the connections between worlds; BlackLion pointed out that often in myth and fantasy, when the Earth shakes, a new being has entered from another plane of existence. We speculated what fey folk might have joined us last evening, just after the New Moon.

The wonders of nature are many. While it was frightening at the time, feeling the Earth shake underneath me is another source of awe and delight at the amazing Universe we inhabit. As BlackLion quipped, “Welcome, Earth!”

Oh, and speaking of the elements, while looking through my website and blog posts the other day, I noticed that I hadn’t completed my series on the elements. I don’t think I ever did a summing-up post on Water. That’s mostly because our Elements Study Group never held our final gathering, the participants having moved on to other projects. I’d like to complete the series, though, so sometime soon I’ll be posting about Water, and I’ll provide links to the other element posts, so you can check them out without searching the site. Have a delightful day!


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