Updated: Dec 30, 2020
Snapped the twigs off fallen branches, tinder fingers poking through the snow.
Made a heart of leaves and kindling for the pile with our daughter;
wood and stone and us now bathed in autumn's final glow.
Lit the fire to welcome Winter,
may the flames help us remember ancient things inside our heart
and those who stand with us unseen, who blazed these trails so long ago.
With many gears in the celestial clock nearing the source point of their annual rotations, we are again presented with a time to reflect on the year that is passing by and that which is coming into view. The urge to tie up loose ends, to venture inward as the days grow temporarily darker, and to match the pace of a slowly churning season is palpable. Our traditional celebrations and holidays at the conclusion of the year, here Below, emerged as a reflection of the drama of the luminaries Above, whose courses and interactions correspond with, if not dictate precisely, the social, cultural and environmental rhythms we feel here on earth.
The arrival of Jupiter and Saturn's "Great Conjunction" (or "Grand Chronator" in more esoteric circles) further emphasizes our embedment within a mirror of the heavens, albeit a rippling and distorted one. We slip now somewhat hypnagogically toward a reordering of the "invisible structures" within our human world, with Kronos featured so prominently above our heads, visible to our naked eyes. Saturn seemingly negotiating the terms with nearby Jupiter, as though observably resetting the gears of the human timeline themselves. In our hearts, renewal feels imminent, both in a tangible sense as the annual cycles refresh, but also at some greater celestial scale, perhaps beyond our scope of perception, that dictates the tone of the aeons to come. Strange loops, which the human mind can only identify and boil down once we have ventured completely through them, and can finally view them from beyond any single fixed point along the endless spiraling path...
In so many people's lives, 2020 brought innumerable hardships, unexpected twists and turns, and an urgency to alter course. While we were forced to make appropriate adjustments, at Immortal Mountain we are incredibly grateful to have been granted the opportunity (thus far) to essentially keep on keeping on, and our hearts go out to all who have lost loved ones, struggled, and persevered.
We adapted where possible but kept the nearby stream and waterfalls at close range for regular visits and consultations. Frequent calibration and reassessments were necessary. In the warmest days of Summer we were grateful for the dawn choruses and their encouragement, and on the grayest, coldest days, we had the ice formations, originating from some source transcending reason, when we needed inspiration . We made fires to honor the gateways of the seasons, and a nightly changing moon overhead reassured us that despite the societal chaos of our current earthly disposition, the mysterious foundations of an unfathomably immense level of reality remained yet unphased.
(IMMORTAL MTN IN 2020)
Throughout 2020 we have continued to develop the living systems here at our small farmstead, influenced by the philosophy of permaculture and the techniques of regenerative agriculture. Since May we have been fully engaged in weekly production cycles on our land to provide mushrooms, chocolates, fresh greens, herbs, and botanical offerings to our local community in the context of our "contactless-delivery" based CSA. We have also developed several additions to our line of organic hand-crafted chocolates, and have been honored to provide them to our online supporters throughout the lockdowns, as well as our stalwart local retailers who also continued to adjust to the changing conditions throughout the year.
Though we were incredibly excited for a full calendar of events that we intended to host in 2020, including fungi cultivation, permaculture and homesteading-based workshops and on-site shop hours (featuring our herbal and cacao-based goods and select medicinal/edible landscaping oriented nursery stock), we decided to err on the side of caution and put all in-person events on hold.
Instead, we invested much of our creative energy toward a video project intended to document a full growing season of our work here at Immortal Mountain, featuring many of the permaculture/homesteading projects were have been engaged in, showcasing the plants and fungi we are blessed to work with and learn from, and some of the adventures we have found ourselves on this year, here in the landscape we love and revere, and occasionally a little beyond. The videos are currently featured on our youtube page, and will be linked in upcoming blog posts here on our website as well. We formally invite anyone interested in our endeavors and our broader mission to check them out or share them with others who may be curious about permaculture, mushrooms, herbalism, and our Mountainside goings-on.
We hope to initiate a full calendar of events in 2021, and will be announcing the details soon if the conditions become appropriate for workshops and events in the near future. In the meantime our chocolates are available directly through the retailers listed on our home page, and our full line of products can be viewed and purchased directly from us via our website's shop. Feel free to browse and send any questions our way....
Here's to a hopeful and glorious new year.