Posted by: Dave Neads | April 25, 2009

The Energy Gods

Yesterday, when I went to pick up mail and do some other business in Anahim Lake,  I connected with something that really intrigued me.  This was the first trip out of the valley in three weeks, during which time breakup had been underway.

As usual, the valley bottom is clear of snow, the meadows are sprouting , the geese are in the ponds, the trails are dry and there is just a Friar Tuck fringe of ice left along the river banks in the shady spots.

I have been thinking about attempting a town trip for several days.  Part of the calculation is guessing how much snow has melted up on the mountain, which  not only is north facing, but is 1500 feet higher.  The other permutations are almost endless.  How cold has it been at night lately? Was it just a bounce, or was it freezing for several hours? How warm did it get during the day?  How much did those two days of rain last week melt the snow pack, did it snow up there when it was raining down here?

Did the culverts stay open or are they frozen solid, with the runoff washing out the road?  How many trees came down during those three or four windstorms?  Lots of questions, lots to think about.

I climbed up onto the ridge behind our place, took a look over to the southwest.  The hilltops I use as a ‘tell’ still had snow, but there were a few bare spots.  That usually means that travel, while a bit messy, is possible.

None of this is new.  The spring turnover from snowmachine to ATV and eventually a regular vehicle is an annual ritual.  But this year I got a different perspective.

According to my calculations, I could have gone out anytime in the last few days.  But there was always some little thing I felt I still needed to do; recheck the chain saw, fix the muffler on the ATV, take another look from the ridge.  Nothing specific, just not feeling ready.

I began to think about the First Nations, about the way they worked with the spirits, the gods of earth, wind and fire.  They had a myriad of rituals, routines, observances, and chants  they used to placate the gods, to ensure safe travel or good hunting.

I’ve always been skeptical of this, because I know that we mortals cannot control the weather, the movement of game, the strength of the wind, the energy that forms the universe around us.

Then it struck me.  It is about energy, but not the energy of the wind, the rivers, or the forest; it is about our internal force field. The rituals, the observances, the actions, prayers, chants, all the cultural instruction is not about the power of the gods; it is about our personal energy.

It is about us feeling ready, feeling confident, feeling the flow that makes us quiet, calm  capable, maybe even invincible.

We all operate that way.  When we feel up, we are hell on wheels, when we feel down, all crashes.  Just like a hockey team that wins one night and loses another.  It is all about the energy, the confidence, the mindset as much as the physical skill and capacity.

Sure you need the latter, but it is the former that really makes the difference.

So it is with the spring ritual. Once I have done all I feel I can do, once I have honoured the rites of observation and maintenance, once I feel ready, then it is time to go. That is what the ancient peoples of this land did with their ceremonies: they got themselves mentally ready for the challenges facing them.  It was about their energy, not the energy of the gods.

The trip had its moments, but it went as planned.  Yes, there was more snow than I had anticipated, the moose had made a real mess of it in the clearcuts creating the rough ride from hell, and sure on the way back, the deep snow was getting soft and I had to chew, slip and slide a fair amount, but there was nothing really  problematic.

All in all, just another timeless moment in the energy flows of the Western Ark.


  1. The challenge comes when I seek to retain my sensitivity to how the energy is flowing in and around me, while working with and around others who have their own sensitivities that need (or at least get) attention.

  2. Dave – I hope all is well, it has been quite some time since your last post. How is life your way? Thank you for sharing your thoughts and perspective in the past.

    Best Wishes,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: