Sunday, April 12, 2015

'The Butterfly Effect'

Good afternoon my friends....I would like to tell you a story today about my dear ones the birds and the butterflies and fairies. 
You see, the butterflies and the birds often come to me and whisper little messages in my ear, and sometimes they tell me things of very small matter, such as that it's going to be a breezy day today so please wear a scarf, or to put the kettle on as someone is coming to visit....and other times it is matters of great importance, such as giving me messages to go for a walk, where it turns out I may come across a person or creature in need of assistance...or perhaps will capture an inspiring message in the clouds...or simply put..I just may perhaps be called upon to save the world!

 Well today the message is no less than just that - saving the world, and my little winged friends have a message for all of us here today.  But I will first tell you the story, so to give you a better understanding of how very, very important YOU are to this story.

"Once upon a time, there was a lovely fairy named Pearl.  Now pearl was a sea-fairy or sprite, as they are called, and she loved nothing more than to skim over top of the waves, then dive underneath them to the warm ocean bed below, where she would take care of the oysters and polish the beautiful round pearls nestled inside each one. 

 Her friends the starfish would come and play games with Pearl and her friends, and give them slides down Neptune's Gulch, until Pearl would fly home to the call of her father's trumpet at nightfall. 

A great storm came one night, and Pearl awoke to find the shoreline littered with the still living bodies of her friends the starfish, as they had been washed up on shore by the enormous waves. 

 Frantically, Pearl and her friends began to work, trying to drag the starfish back into the ocean.  But sea-sprites are very small, so their efforts were in vain, as the starfish were too soggy and heavy for the little fairies wings to carry.  

Desperately, Pearl looked around the shore to see if anyone could help.  A young boy was playing in the tidal pools nearby.  Breaking the rules, which forbid fairies to converse with humans, as so few can see through the veil in this modern world, Pearl flew to the boy, and begged him to help save her friends. 

 Luckily, the child was one who knew about fairies, and he leapt into action, throwing one after the other starfish back into the sea.  Bending, and throwing, bending and throwing, the boy looked like a dancer as he bent and threw, bent and threw, over and over and over again.

 Soon the boy attracted the attention of passers-by, as families were now arriving at the starfish-strewn beach.  They stood and watched,  slightly mocking in their tone as they called to the boy,  

"Young man, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?"

The boy never halted in his purpose as he yelled back,

 "The sun is up, the tide is out, and they will surely die if I do not help them!" 

"But there are too many! the people responded, You cannot possibly make a difference!"

The boy listened politely, bent down, picked up another starfish, and threw it in the sea.

"It made a difference to that one." he said.

It was then, and only then, that the people, realizing that the boy was right, started to run to help him with his task, and in no time all the starfriends were back in the ocean where they belonged.  Pearl thanked the boy and returned to tend to her friends, and all was well in the world."

You see, the fairies and the boy knew something that the people had yet to learn.  And that was the fact that even the most overwhelmingly insurmountable task had to start somewhere, with someone.

  As the saying goes, 'A journey of a thousand miles begins with one small step'.  

Well, today, the message that the birds and butterflies and fairies have come to share is this - 

YOU are the one who will change the world, YOU are the one who will make a difference, even if only to one small creature, if only in one small is still YOU who will do it!  

There is power in action.  There is greatness in the moment when we stoop to pick up the first starfish, when we decide to act in the face of overwhelming odds.  It may seem as though our task is impossible.  It may feel as though we are all alone in our efforts.  We may be mocked and ridiculed because of it. 

 Through the centuries there are countless stories of how people have been persecuted and even killed for their beliefs, only to be proved correct years later..but we remember the names of Galileo and Capurnicus to this day, not the names of their detractors, who have long since faded into the the dark abyss of oblivion.  

"But what can little old me do to save the world?" you ask. "How can I fight the big Oil corporations who are poisoning our rivers and lakes, the bio-tech companies like Monsanto who are splicing even more poisons into our foods, the nuclear radioactive cesium now reaching our  coastlines from Japan? How can I stop this?  What can I do?  How can I possibly make a difference?"

Well, there is mounting evidence that you can make an enormous difference, and the way to start is in your own environment, within your own home, with your own friends and family.
Have you heard of the Butterfly Effect?  It is a scientific theory that maintains that a single occurence, no matter how small, can change the universe.

"The butterfly effect is a term used in chaos theory to describe how small changes to a seemingly unrelated thing or condition (also known as an initial condition) can affect large, complex systems. The term comes from the suggestion that the flapping of a butterfly's wings in South America could affect the weather in Texas, meaning that the tiniest influence on one part of a system can have a huge effect on another part. 
The concept of the butterfly effect is attributed to Edward Norton Lorenz, a mathematician and meteorologist, who was one of the first proponents of chaos theory. Lorenz was running global climate models on his computer one day and, hoping to save himself some time, ran one model from the middle rather than the beginning.

 The two weather predictions, one based on the entire process, including initial conditions, and another based on a portion of the data, starting with the process already part way completed, diverged drastically. Lorenz, along with most scientists of his time, had expected the computer models to be identical regardless of where they started. Instead, tiny, unpredictable variations caused the two models to differ."
 That's right - tiny, unpredictable variations.  Like you. And me. Like the six activists who bravely and 'illegally' climbed aboard a rig heading for the Arctic this week to protest about drilling for oil in what is arguable the last pristine ocean on Earth.

  Like the fierce members of the Heiltsuk Nation in B.C. who recently fought and won against the Department of Fisheries by occupying their offices until they were forced to negotiate and put a halt to commercial fishing in their waters.  
"But I'm not going to climb on an oil-rig or take on a Ministry - you say - that's not for me!"
OK - admittedly it takes a certain kind of bravery to take such bold steps - but even those of us a little  fainter-of-heart can do their part.

  Speaking of butterflies - did you know that the beautiful Monarch butterfly is in danger?  Dwindling habitat  and pesticides such as glysophates that have also found to have been killing bees globally has caused this amazing butterfly to dwindle an alarming 96.5 percent over the last few decades. 

 Planting milkweed in your backyard is a wonderful way to help the butterflies - my guides are asking every one of you here to help to bring the Monarchs back in this one simple way. 

 Milkweed is the plant that Monarchs depend on - it's the only plant they eat, and they lay their eggs on milkweed leaves during the summer breeding season. So...planting butterfly plants, flowers, not using Round-Up on your lawn...all these are incredibly important steps that YOU can take to make a huge difference in the world! 
Did anyone else feed the birds throughout this brutal winter?  My little flock of goldfinches, chickadees and Cardinals kept me company throughout the long months, often chirping their thanks to me throughout February when I had to keep on re-filling the feeders as they gorged on the oil-rich sunflowers that were helping keep them alive in the bitter cold.  
So it's the small things that count...just as much as the big and bold world-renowned anthropologist  Margaret Mead said:

"Never underestimate the power of a small group of committed people to change the word,  In fact it is the only thing that ever has."

    or even more simply put,
                                                Change one thing, change everything.
The butterflies and birds and bees and fairies will thank you for it.  And so will I!
Thank you.
Madame Butterfly

 Milkweed seeds available for mail order at
Starfish Story adapted from The Star Throwerby Loren Eiseley (1907 – 1977)

1st starfish image-

2nd starfish image-

The Butterfly Effect image -

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