the eye of love
dissolves the veil of brokenness
to reveal purpose
Extinction Witness creates and curates memorials for the dismembered, liberating human creativity in service of healing unrecognized and unresolved violations of individuals and whole cultures.
The project includes the production of short films, a website (work in progress) for curating these films along with other works of remembering, the creation of sacred sites, and the practice of gratitude ritual in collaboration with Radical Joy for Hard Times.
Extinction Witness runs on the premise that the present mass extinction of species is driven by how we relate with ourselves and one another. We believe that we are blocked from restoring prosperity and abundance for all by a well of inherited unresolved trauma and grief from our ancestors.
“Dismembered” recognizes both individual detachment from self and collective ignorance of and aversion to whole species and cultures. We seek to re-member ourselves and all disenfranchised communities in the interest of restoring abundance for all.
In collaboration with Radical Joy for Hard Times, we are rethinking the concept and rewriting the practice of mourning and grief ritual.
We are grateful. Rather than live with loss in a chronic state of suffering, we go to loss with gratitude that we’ve known such beauty and reap wisdom from the change. In the process, we express our sadness for the passing of individual beauty and we celebrate the enrichment of the whole as the unique is released for the benefit of all.
“Slowly, we came to realize that our practice of purposefully seeking meaning and beauty in the wounded was teaching us important lessons about wholeness…We discovered that what we had feared would be too painful to bear was not… And then, so slowly we hardly recognized what was happening, we began to love the place. There is no other way to say this. Willingness to look turned into curiosity, which turned into acceptance, which turned into compassion, and that turned into love.” - Trebbe Johnson, Founder and Director at Radical Joy for Hard Times, from “Gaze Even Here: Opening our hearts to brokenness”, Orion Magazine
There is no denying that we are wounded people gazing upon a wounded world. Every single one of us is conscious at some level of the pain and it is our fear of pain and aversion to brokenness that keeps the wounds festering and growing.
Trebbe’s reflection is testament to the transformative power of going right to the heart of the pain, literally and physically planting ourselves together there long enough to realize that the very act of bearing witness turns pain to Love’s beauty.
Extinction Witness’ first memorial project, Virgin: Remembering Whole Women and Big Trees, is in the works. See Virgin.
Extinction Witness is a project of Empowerment Works, Inc. 501(c)3.
Gifts are tax deductible as allowed by law.
We invite and greatly appreciate general gifts for Extinction Witness.