THE EARTHFIRE BLOG

Humble Bumble the Grizzly Bear
Earthfire Journal
November 8, 2018

An ADHD Bear and His Pineapple

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — I offered Teton a slice of fresh pineapple. He looked at it with disdain. Didn’t bother to even sniff it, just walked away. Stately. He...

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — Conservationists are concerned with saving species. But an important new movement in conservation circles says it is also essential to recognize the inherent worth of each individual animal. This is the beginning of a major shift in our thinking about wild animals. One current in this growing movement is called Compassionate Conservation. The traditional species-focus is based on biology- if you lose a member, it is ok because the species can renew itself. Biologists are trained to give animals numbers instead of names, and aren’t allowed to get emotionally attached. The animals are reduced to statistics for population dynamics rather than considering...

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — There is something new brewing and we can all contribute to it… In our Conservation Conversations, we explore many aspects of how we connect to animals and nature, but this last conversation was an unusual one. We explored the idea that we humans are the source of environmental destruction, and the cause of our destructive behavior is trauma. Generations and generations of trauma. Trauma that closes us down and closes our minds to other options. Makes us compartmentalize our thinking to keep ourselves safe from the chaos of fear. Makes us focus on the present, and stops us from seeing the consequences of our actions. Because we don’t feel safe, we...

Bramble the Bear

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — Ravenous bears… 21 September. The bears declared that they’re starving today. It is a few hours before the fall solstice and they are complaining loudly. Food! They will have to be fed first before anyone else now---and three times a day---or we will hear about it. Have you ever heard a bear roar in protest? It is not a pretty sound. Poor sweet things. They sound ferocious, and because of their size we take it very seriously. But really, they are feeling like desperate infants crying their need out to the world. The physiological pressures and urges are huge. If they don't get enough food, they won't make it through their winter hibernation. Here, they...

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — The Sacred Earth conference in Lucca was organized by Kamran Mofid, a person of great heart. This gave people the permission and sense of safety needed for the freedom to explore, together and without fear, as we all sought solutions to our current crises. Warmth allows us to open to new possibilities. It was so rich it will take a while to share all the ideas. Some I will share in the next Conservation Conversations and future blogs. But interestingly, one of the presentations that offered a beautiful, unique perspective on healing and moving forward was a project aimed at healing the trauma of the Nazi concentration camps. What does that have to do with...

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — 11 September 2018 It seems we keep getting them younger and younger. This time it is a baby squirrel, 2-3 days old, lying quietly in my hand, tiny, soft, still. He had to be in shock – he was found on the ground, dehydrated and cold. His mother and siblings were dead, most likely from a cat. A rough introduction to the world. He has gradually been accepting the eyedropper full of milk, tiny paws waving and grasping at the hard glass, instinctively trying to knead his mother’s belly to stimulate the flow of milk in a perfectly choreographed dance. What a poor substitute we can offer! Nutrition. Safety. Warmth. Cleaning. But not a loving mother’s...

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