Into the Sweet Darkness.


Come with me to the depths of the forest. I know just where to go. I see the trees towering ahead as I reach the edge of the meadow where they begin.

However, the trees only remind me of the strength I feel as I walk fearlessly into where I know I am going. There is nothing pretty about it, and I know exactly what waits in the depths of the forest. I don’t take the path that is obvious, I slice through the densest parts of the forest, leaving the remnants to die and decay, nourishing the forest floor long after I have passed by. There are no fortresses that I cannot penetrate.

I am going to the place where eyes cease to be necessary to see. Where I must sense with all my being in the subtlest ways only known to me, in order to navigate to the deepest places.

I am going to the place where the ancestors are preserved in the dark shadows. This place is close to the core of earthly things. Even those creatures that dwell there defy the usual means for being in the world, some of their senses heightened and others completely absent or altered. Their sensory abilities are born in the darkness where the molten glows in the fire of emergence.

The boundaries between things fall away, and the sensuousness that seems to blossom in this place is only a disguise for that which inflicts the most delicious death of who you thought you were. It is here where the venomous spiders whisper their kisses of death in my ear, and I laugh with deep satisfaction at the certainty of the sweet pain and rot to follow.

The others, those who love to lap up the sweet juices of the newly disemboweled and dismembered, wait at the edges until the time is ripe to sink the sharpness of their keen desire into the flesh that will soon be theirs alone.

Actually the forest is far more dangerous now that it has ever been. Oh, let me see you in all of your delicious humanness. Will you reluctantly enter? Turn back in fear? Do you dare to have your unconsciousness disemboweled and sacrifice all that you know for the nourishment of others?

Consider this carefully, as where the delight in sensuality and fierceness has been labeled as a dangerous evil place where demons dwell, you will find the sweet honey of your life waiting for you to claim it in the fullness and the delight as it was intended.  Yet one can never be sure of the truth of this until it’s too late and the threshold has been crossed.

This is no ordinary threshold; this is the one from where, once crossed, you can never go back. For none of what I speak of is anything more than what has become essential to recover from our own conditioning in a society that has lost its way and has forgotten those who remember.

We must be or become willing to allow ourselves to enter the dark cocoon or cave in the depths of our own forest. It awaits discovery, and something within us longs for the time where our current form will be digested and transformed into the beauty we never imagined was possible.


Jennifer Obbard has been aware of having an innate and enduring delight with the natural world since she was a young child. She has been teaching and working in higher education for more than 20 years. She is nearing completion of her PhD in education at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, where the focus of her research is investigating and precisely describing the micro-phenomenological dynamics between humans and the other-than-human world. She is also undergoing Wild Mind Training with Animas Valley Institute to become a personal wilderness guide, and delighting in finding the sweet darkness within her.


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