Miners: Underground to Space and Back to Ground

What are the chances that what we learn in and about Space, high above the planet we call "home", could be helpful to a group of men trapped 2100 feet beneath the surface of where the rest of us live?  Apparently, when we explore the terrain that is off our map of reality in any direction, there are essential elements that are in common and help us survive. 

Miner Osman Araya hugs arrives as the sixth miner to be hoisted to the surface in Copiapo October 13, 2010. Chile's 33 trapped miners are set to travel nearly half a mile through solid rock in a shaft just wider than a man's shoulders on Tuesday night, as their two month ordeal after a cave-in draws to an end. REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado (CHILE - Tags: DISASTER BUSINESS)

Food, water and a way to endure the climate and conditions are among the most basic. The next most important part is connection. Without human connection, the isolation creates disorientation and depression. The miners had each other, and then began a life-giving connection with those on the surface. Even though they remained physically far away from each other, they exchanged  supplies, information, and advice. The care and prayers going down the hole were equally, if not more important, than the survival resources. After 69 days, the men came out smiling.

Psychologically and emotionally, there is little difference between the down-under experience and those who are depressed. Last year there were 220 million prescriptions written for depression and anxiety medication in the U.S. alone. How many of those millions have stopped believing that there is anyone on the surface, much less one who cares about them? Health depends upon  prayers/positive intentions and caring connection - the relationship between our inner world, those on the surface, and the Source of All Life.
Have you had a season of life where you feel dark, survival-focused and isolated? Why not try imagining that you are in a protective cage, being pulled to the surface by those who care and are waiting for you. Write a poem, a blog or find a group who wants your presence and contribution. Remember that all things pass, and what you do with your season of winter may one day save someone else.
If you are not in that dark place, think for one minute about someone in your life who might be in that dark mine. Send flowers unexpectedly, write a "thinking about you" email, find a fun opportunity or workshop and invite him or her to join you. Smile when you pass people who are not smiling. You may just save a life. 
It's all about the connection.

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