A few weeks ago, I saw a one-sentence comment on a Facebook thread suggesting that people meditate for five minutes for the manifestation of rain here in dusty, dry Northern New Mexico. The idea resonated strongly with me and so I created a Facebook group page for the purpose of gathering an online community of meditators all over the world.
We’ve had several wildfires that for several weeks have enveloped Santa Fe and surrounding areas in an alarming slurry of smoke and fire retardant chemicals. Feelings of anxiety and frustration were becoming central to most conversations in our town.
When I saw that one-sentence comment on Facebook suggesting a group prayer for rain, I felt this would be a good way to connect and feel a sense of community while having to close all the windows in my house and run my air-filter machine 24/7
So, I created the 5-Minute Rain Meditation as a group page on Facebook. I invited lots of people and encouraged them to invite their friends, too. It didn’t matter where they were: the event description invited these prayers to extend to all beings, everywhere, who have a need for rain or other kinds of physical or spiritual nourishment.
Week One: There were 150 of us who prayed, meditated and held an intention for rain. And that week, there was a tiny little spit of rain here in the southeast area of Santa Fe. Really not much, but it was wet. It also rained a bit in town.
Week Two: There were 303 of us. Before the meditation, there was a zero percent chance of precipitation for the coming week. By Thursday evening, there was a big, uproarious thunderstorm in the downtown Santa Fe area. My dear friend, photographer extraordinaire Jennifer Esperanza, caught the moment when a number of us ran outside of Tiny’s Restaurant (where we were dancing to The Broomdust Caravan) and I stood in the pouring rain yelling with relief and gratitude: “Thank you!”
Today was Week Three: There were 470 of us sitting on our respective meditation cushions, or lying on the dusty red dirt or wherever, at 12 noon US Mountain Time. I know my friend Connie was meditating with us from the U.K., and there were others who joined in from all over the country and the globe.
Is it working?
So, are these prayers connected with the three or four episodes of precipitation these past few weeks? I don’t know. What I do know is that our challenges with weather, drought, wildfires–they’re nothing new. What is new, at least over the last century as we’ve developed numerous ways to be physically comfortable and overfed, is that people in the entitled-world (e.g., North America) feel increasingly affronted by the inconvenience of challenging weather conditions, when what we probably should feel affronted by is our profound numbness and lack of empathy about how we expend the natural resources of the planet with impunity.
However, I’ll leave global warming, the grotesque over-consumption of fossil fuels and the perversity of over-population for another time. Here’s the real question: What are we doing with this 5-Minute Rain Prayer and why will I, at least, continue with it?
There’s rain and there’s Rain
We are holding an intent for rain of the wet, life-giving variety. We are holding an intent for big, heavy, thunderous rain clouds to drench the parched earth here in Northern New Mexico and elsewhere on the planet where it is so needed.
And, these prayers and meditations–I also intend for them to be medicine for a human world that is lost and disconnected from Source and from the natural world in so many ways. The plants, minerals, animals–they never lost connection with the reality of inter-being, but so many of us humans have become utterly isolated from each other and from the living, breathing being that is Grandmother Earth, Gaia, Pacha Mama.
So, each time we sit together on Sundays for five minutes of prayer and meditation, maybe we are increasing the prospects for rain in Northern New Mexico and elsewhere. And maybe we’re also remembering how to just be with one another for the purpose of sharing our love for this world.
Soul-Medicine, Loving Community & an Abscessed Tooth
I continue to hear from my brother and sister meditators that we are creating a sense of loving community and that that in itself is so nourishing. People have said to me: “I could feel that I was with other loving, caring friends as I sat alone in my living room praying for rain.” One woman on the Facebook event page made a plea for prayers to be thrown in for her abscessed tooth.When I saw that she’d made that request, I’d thought, “Oh, man, I’m sorry about your tooth, but that’s not germane to our purpose here.” And yet, toward the last minute of my meditation today, I found myself holding this woman (whom I don’t know personally) and her hurting tooth in the same space of loving kindness in which I was holding the manifestation for a good, drenching downpour to soothe my thirsting corn, beans and squash, Tres Lagunas in the Pecos Wilderness and the Thompson area in the Jemez Mountains. There was no contradiction, no interruption in the flow of love that I was experiencing.
I personally hope we get lots of rain of the wet, life-giving variety, so that the trees, the birds and animals may flourish. And I am also holding an intent for rain of the soul-variety, the kind of rain that feeds the souls of humans who are thirsting to be connected–with themselves, with others and with the sacred, life-giving miracle that is this blessed earth.
Please join the 5-Minute Rain Meditation every Sunday at 12 noon US Mountain time. These prayers are for Rain (both wet and soul-full), Balance and Nourishment. For All Beings. To figure out what time that is in your location, visit www.timeanddate.com