The Power of Fire

Early last Saturday morning walking on the beach I looked over towards Constantia Neck to witness plumes of black and grey smoke avalanching into the sky above Imizamo Yetho.  The morning unfolded with apocalyptic sights in IY – the fire, the fear, the destruction.  In the darkness of Sunday morning I woke dreaming of fire only to look out across the valley to see the wild orange of the Karbonkelberg mountain ablaze.  The power of fire adding to the trauma that had already settled in the valley.

Fire is the element that sparks love, compassion and passion.  It is both creative and destructive.  Fire carries with it the ability to transmute.  It has the power to turn hate into love, darkness into light.  A few months ago I sat in a public meeting about building a clinic on the Hout Bay common. I left shattered after witnessing the great divide that existed across the communities.  It felt like we needed the sacrificial lamb of the common to bring unity into Hout Bay. 

This week I experienced the transforming power of fire.  The IY fire opened the hearts of so many.  The rage that existed at that meeting has been replaced with compassion.  Fynbos feeds on the transforming aspect of fire.  Out of the blackened landscape of the Karbonkelberg long dormant seeds and bulbs will emerge from the ashes creating spectacular beauty.  My prayer is that a new Imizamo Yetho will emerge with homes where people live in dignity and without the fear of the destructive aspect of fire.  

And to end –

The fire element is connected to the south.  When we create Sacred Space for the Munay Ki Rites we call in the south with this invocation. 

To the Winds of the South
Great Serpent – wrap your coils of light around us
Teach us to shed our past the way you shed your skin
To walk softly on Mother Earth
Teach us the Beauty Way

So perfectly apt for now and the way forward.