F.Christopher Reynolds, M.Ed., is a singer, teacher and community healer from Cleveland, Ohio. His mission is to sing the dream of Earth onward through songs, writings, ritual, healing concerts and workshops. His method is to bring forth Ethical Culture through the shared creation of Ethical Music and Ethical Space. He is a singer-songwriter with 15 CDs. He is the lead author on the only publications on depth psychology, soul, creativity and giftedness. He is also published in organic creativity in the language classroom. Chris is the founder of Ethical Music and Earthbriety. He is a co-founder of archetypal ecology. Chris is an adjunct professor in Art and Religious Studies at Ursuline College.. He is an adjunct professor in Creativity Studies for the Gifted at Ashland University. He works with Warriors Journey Home to assist communities to welcome veterans home from military service.
Method: Creation of Ethical Culture through Ethical Music by Gatherings of Orphans and Ethical Spaces.
Ethical Music or Ethical Folk Music
Ethical Music is the music and songs that connect Indigenous, Eurocentric, African, Indian, Asian…global, singing with the Dream and Voice of the Earth. Ethical music invokes, invites, and nourishes the synkairos* of ethical spaces, Ethical Culture. It is music that comes forth through the spaces and moments in-between. Ethical music includes initiatory, liminal spaces where lives are transformed.
It is the expression of the de-colonized/re-indigenized state of conscious awareness in singing where local ecosystems, Indigenous and Western sounds, are brought together. Ethical Music is biocratic music. Biocratic is a term from Thomas Berry’s book, “The Dream of the Earth”.
It is a way of life that honors all voices of an ecosystem.
This is a soundtrack of Recovery, that is new, inspiring, affirming of co-creation and co-revelation that has the potential for improvisation or innovation to know the assumptions, values and intent of all. Adding ethics to the music entertains our personal capacity and our integrity to stand up for our cherished values of good, responsibility and our collective biocratic stewardship of the future of Earth at home in an ever-evolving 13,82 billion years old cosmos. Our sense of the duration of life flourishes in the image of the solar system below:
The new, electifying, even contentious, yet more peaceful, creative, biocratic culture that results when Indigenous/ethnospheric* and Eurocentric knowledge combine with the orphan archetype* to bring forth new ways of life. It is the emerging participatory culture that flourishes in the solar system and cosmos our current science understands. The art, music, dance, clothing, cultural themes all reflect the sustaining endurance of consciousness/collective consciousness (Ancestors, nature, cosmology) as understood by a growing edge of depth psychology called archetypal ecology.
*Ethnospheric means of or having to do with the ethnosphere as defined by Wade:
…the living diversity of human wisdom, a vast archive of knowledge and expertise, a catalogue of the imagination, an oral and written language composed of the memories of countless elders and healers, warriors, farmers, fishermen, midwives, poets, and saints — in short, the artistic, intellectual and spiritual expression of the full complexity and diversity of the human experience.
*Orphan archetype or The One Who Belongs Nowhere comes from my own work in holistic education:
The orphan path carries with it the challenge of belonging nowhere. If acted out too unconsciously, that path can take us from city to city, from institution to institution, driven on at time by an inner necessity, by others, by outer crises. However, having nowhere to lay one’s head, if taken up consciously, can also represent the stance of teachers working in relation with their deepest power.
A Gathering of Orphans and Ethical Space
…the in-between creative space that connects Indigenous/ethnospheric
and Eurocentric knowledge systems that were separated
by colonial history…the space that is created and nourished
when Indigenous, Western, and ethnospheric thought are brought together…
Adding ethics to this space honors our individual capacity
for receptivity and creativity. It entertains our personal capacity and
our integrity to stand up for our cherished notions of good,
responsibility, and duty. It honors those who have been orphaned
by life, thus called into ethical space by the archetypal driver of
planetary consciousness — Joseph Campbell’s “mankind of individuals.”
1. Synkairos is direct experience of right relationship with the Beauty that sustains the world. It’s signature feature is the experience of the silence and serenity throughout nature simultaneously present in ourselves. That silence and serenity are themselves nourished by personal and community synchronicity.
2. Synkairos is tended by ritual during the seasons the year — wherever 2 or more are gathered for the good of all – a human participation in the archetypal orchestration of synchronicity. Thus we participate in “…an expression of something that is in some way producing the phenomenon–constituting the synchronicity, constellating the archetypal patterning, orchestrating the meaningful coincidence of otherwise separate events.” (Richard Tarnas, In Archai, issue 6, p. 34) It follows the wisdom of the somatic “prayer” of each season as a human being in community with all of nature upon the Earth.
3. Wherever you find synkairos, you also find personal, as well as, collective sanity and happiness in sync with the season of life, the season of the year and the creative life changes that mark the boundaries at birth, adolescence, elderhood, death, re-birth.
4. Synkairos offers a way for Western persons to fully participate in the evolutionary health of the planet that Thomas Berry called, The Dream of the Earth and that Theodore Roszak called, The Voice of the Earth.
5. Synkairos is the decolonization/re-indigenization of synchronicity.
We are living in the largest shift in human consciousness – ever. There have never been times like the present. Leo Frobenius described the human cultural style that is now in decline as the Monumental Stage. The hallmarks of the Monumental Stage were agriculture and stock-breeding, the arts of writing, mathematics, the motion of the planets and coercive government. He called the emerging world view the period of World Culture.
With those concepts in mind, I approach our time of history as an initiatory passage between. I call our days the Magnification. It began in 1610 with the publication of Galileo’s book, Starry Messenger. We are participating in a magnifying rite of passage described through and with our cosmology.
The yellow circle traced in the galactic image below represents the inherited idea of the cosmos that was used during the Monumental Stage. Inside that mandala are 6000 stars visible to the naked eye.
Though our science has gone beyond this idea, culturally, we have yet to complete our birth out of what has been our star-lined-uterus:
We are slowly awakening and returning into a participatory ethical culture that remembers all life is sacred, that knows we participate best as bi-polar/bi-axial seasonal souls upon a bi-polar/biaxial planet in a bi-polar solar system in orbit around the galactic center in a bi-polar galaxy among trillions of other galaxies in an ever-expanding holistic cosmos.
We are moving out from beneath the ecocidal atmosphere of the late-modern world view and into the revelatory solid transparency of the emerging participatory world view. Our emerging planetary awareness is essentially expressed in the fact that our planet turns on 2 axes:
In poetic terms, our star knowledge tells us that there is no longer a single-center around which all things revolve. There was a time in Egypt 4500 years ago when the stars nearest to the celestial north pole were called, indestructible. We now know that what at first seemed like an unmoved mover is itself in motion, tracing a larger circle of pole stars and polar empty spaces.
Ours is a crucial time because to collectively and unconsciously continue the ways of Monumental Culture is to degrade the life-sustaining capacity of the Earth for future generations.
Joseph Campbell, in Creative Mythology, described our emerging culture in the text below. Even as he does this, he is still bound to the Monumental Stage in how he uses the term, ‘man’, to describe all humanity. Still, if you make the adjustment in language, you can get a sense of our times:
And the distinguishing feature of its new mankind — as heralded by in the lives and works of those through whom it was announced–has already been suggested in Wolfram’s Parizval: that is to say, a mankind of individuals, self-moved to ends proper to themselves, directed not by the constraint and noise of others, but each by his own inner voice.
Martin Luther King echoed this same message:
This call for a worldwide fellowship that lifts neighborly concern beyond one’s tribe, race, class, and nation is in reality a call for an all-embracing — embracing and unconditional love for all mankind. This oft misunderstood, this oft misinterpreted concept, so readily dismissed by the Nietzsches of the world as a weak and cowardly force, has now become an absolute necessity for the survival of man. When I speak of love I am not speaking of some sentimental and weak response. I am not speaking of that force which is just emotional bosh. I am speaking of that force which all of the great religions have seen as the supreme unifying principle of life. Love is somehow the key that unlocks the door which leads to ultimate reality. This Hindu-Muslim-Christian-Jewish-Buddhist belief about ultimate — ultimate reality is beautifully summed up in the first epistle of Saint John: “Let us love one another, for love is God. And every one that loveth is born of God and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God, for God is love.” “If we love one another, God dwelleth in us and his love is perfected in us.”Let us hope that this spirit will become the order of the day. MLK – 1967
Under our new heavens and upon our new Earth, we are invited beyond being a collective of individuals each self-moved, into a living Song that sings with the fullness of all Creation and with the resonant inner-voices of all.
We are all trying to return to right planetary relationship and to awaken in the cosmos that magnification has revealed:
The wholeness where I have lived with the circles here in northeast Ohio can be imagined in this way:
And a new self-image we have been birthing can be imagined like this:
The theoretical support for the mind of the music, if you will, is archetypal ecology:
Archetypal ecology is the uniting of Jungian psychology, transpersonal psychology, archetypal psychology, archetypal cosmology, spiritual psychology, eco-psychology, creativity-studies, evolutionary astrology, Hermeticism, and Indigenous wisdom. In particular, it includes our planet as Gaia to the family of celestial archetypes found in archetypal cosmology. Gaia is an archetype of archetypes, which includes celestial woman and celestial man, a re-storation of the sacred in all of the planet’s indigenous wisdom, called the ethnosphere. A bi-polar and seasonally affected conscious, life-engendering planet has been a reality in our cosmos since 1995 with the discovery of the first habitable exoplanet.
May we dare to be enduring, wise and generous stewards of Creation and take care of each other. A name for this kind of living for Western persons is Earthbriety:
Earthbriety is a unification of the Recovery Movement, environmental movement, archetypal ecology with Indigenous/ethnospheric wisdom. It allows them all to join forces to work together for the future generations. In particular, using the idea that in our trauma is our curriculum, the work together is to carefully unpack what caused us harm, locate or create a healing curriculum/art/music/response to offer the children and grandchildren so that the cycle of violence ends with our generation.
Discography and publications from 1978-present:
This is an account of a pilgrimage in remembrance of the 1914 Christmas Truce. In World War I, enemy forces left the safety of the trenches to the song “Silent Night” in their own language. Soldiers; sons, husbands, fathers wanted the peace beyond understanding. You are invited to follow the author’s pilgrimage to renew how we imagine the meaning of Christmas. Noel “New Sun” in Gaelic, has always been the unexpected birth of New Life in a most degraded, forgotten, even despised place. In our traditional telling, the savior was born into a forsaken shelter surrounded by animals. In the early 20th century, that unexpected location was No Man’s Land — the devastated landscape between the enemy trenches. This book is a recollection of the past in order to bring forth a more peaceful future.