Re-Membering and Naturing my Life and Work in a Fifth Province

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Imelda McCarthy


This paper will outline my own systemic journey of engagements and movements in and away from a more natured inclusion in my life and work.   Looking back, I can see that from childhood my life was filled with sustainability practices in that I had parents who planted much of our food and never threw away anything that might be useful in the future. In my team, the Fifth Province Associates, one was a farmer’s daughter and grew up with a deep knowledge of our countryside and the other was an ecological and climate activist. How had I managed not to put all this together into a more coherent systemic roadmap before now? I thank Roger Duncan (2018) and many of my colleagues here in this issue for re-minding me of what I already knew and experienced, and how it could be recycled as it were for a possible more useful future (Simon & Salter, 2020; Palmer, 2014; Santin, 2020; Triantafillou et al., 2016; Edwards, 2020). They have facilitated me to re-member experiences around nature practices, the possibilities for love and colonisation in our practices, the co-creation of an indigenous Irish therapy practice and my experiences of a deep spiritual practice which I have seen over and over again to foster resilience and equanimity1 not only in my own life but also in the lives of clients and those in our Sangha. In the Irish language, the word for resilience, athléimneacht is interesting. Athléimneacht directly translated means jumping (across/in) a ford, an open space or a hollow between two objects. I resonate with this translation as it points to a liminal space so important in Celtic consciousness and of course a fifth province space. Maybe resilience or athléimneacht has been called forth as a need in all of us by the sudden advent, fear and stress of a world in panmorphic crisis (Simon, 2021).  

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How to Cite
McCarthy, I. (2021). Re-Membering and Naturing my Life and Work in a Fifth Province. Murmurations: Journal of Transformative Systemic Practice, 4(1), 74–86.