The following addresses the metamorphosis process of a Caterpillar transforming into a Butterfly, and how this serves as a powerful context for our times.
The Metamorphosis Process of Caterpillar Transforming into Butterfly
Before hatching, when a caterpillar is still developing inside its egg, it grows an imaginal disc for each of the adult body parts it will need as a mature butterfly or moth. Once hatched, the caterpillar, or what is more scientifically termed a larva, hungrily stuffs itself with leaves, growing plumper and longer through a series of molts in which it sheds its skin.
At some point, the caterpillar stops eating, hangs upside down from a twig or leaf and spins itself a silky cocoon or molts into a shiny chrysalis. Within its protective casing, the caterpillar radically transforms its body, eventually emerging as a butterfly or moth. It does so by digesting itself, releasing enzymes to dissolve all of its tissues, turning the contents of the pupa into a nutrient soup. Certain highly organized groups of cells known as imaginal discs survive the digestive process. Once a caterpillar has disintegrated all of its tissues except for the imaginal discs, those discs use the protein-rich soup all around them to fuel the rapid cell division required to form the wings, antennae, legs, eyes, genitals and all the other features of an adult butterfly or moth.
The Metamorphosis Process of Caterpillar Transforming into Butterfly as a Context for our Times
The work of ethnobiologist Elisabeth Sathouris, who spent years studying the transformational process of caterpillar into butterfly, provides a beautiful framework and powerful context for our times. She uncovered what she named imaginal cells, which contain the DNA of the butterfly. Because these cells are slightly different than those of the caterpillar, the immune system of the caterpillar views them as foreign objects and destroys them, the same way it would a virus or bacterium. Similarly, we could say that humanity has done the same to some of our prophets and visionaries – Jesus, Gandhi, Dr. King, the Kennedys, John Lennon.
During the life cycle of the caterpillar, an internal mechanism is triggered in which the caterpillar goes into a hyper-eating phase, engorging itself, eating everything around. In a way, humanity is doing the same, carelessly devouring our natural resources without regard even to our own survival on this planet.
In the case of the caterpillar, the hyper-eating phase also triggers a hyper-production of imaginal cells, which suddenly emerge everywhere, and start gravitating toward each other, coalescing into imaginal clusters. Once they come together, the immune system of the caterpillar can no longer destroy them. It tries and tries until it fails, gives up, and implodes into a mush, a nutrient soup, which the imaginal cells feed on as they transform into the butterfly.
One could say this is a metaphor for where humanity is now. Systems are failing all around us, disintegrating in front of our eyes. A global economic collapse remains a possibility. Corporate scandals, church scandals, and the corrupt workings of our debt based monetary system have revealed the man behind the curtain. We are the imaginal cells, awakening now to our full potential, no longer willing to live lives of frustration, mediocrity, lies, and desperation; not willing to hide our light nor deny our true purpose.
Once we find each other and come together, we can no longer be destroyed. Instead, we ponder, transition, and find our paths of beauty, essence, and possibility...eventually transforming into the Butterfly, the Butterfly of NEW LIFE, an integrated culture of "Cultural Creatives", a “Universal Humanity”!
Interestingly, if you try to help the butterfly out of the 'mush', you will disable the Butterfly and it will not be able to fly! Transitional birth is a totally natural unfoldment in perfect timing with the Universe. We can offer opportunity, but we cannot manipulate the natural process of inner transitions. Instead, we can inspire others to open to the universal impulse of evolution and creativity, the inner genius of the heart, follow our "compass of joy" and experience vocational arousal, doing what we each love to do.
As we do, we need to remember that chaos is the evolutionary driver to change, and that we need to faithfully remain focused on what resonates with and empowers us, and not give energy to negative energies and opposition.
As stated by Buckminster Fuller, "You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the old model obsolete."
Whether we survive the metamorphosis and transform into an exquisite "butterfly humanity" is yet to be seen. For the wakening imaginal cells, the call has gone out: to heal ourselves, shine, be more than we have ever been or ever imagined, and become beacons for other imaginal cells to come together and discover what we may do together that we cannot do isolated and alone.
In co-creating, results emerge in a natural state of energy, freedom, and joyfulness - always moving into the unknown. It is an intelligent and inspired seeking of the highest in value, with faith, integrity, and a synergy of talent that co-creates patterns and structures that render the unworkable old world structures obsolete.
"Day One" - December 22, 2012 represented the birth of a Universal Humanity and the vision of a peaceful, sustainable, healthy, and prosperous world. On that day, there was a huge collective celebration around the globe creating greater awareness regarding the evolution of this new species, and the methodologies, patterns, and structures of the new world era that are necessary for co-creating the world of which we have dreamed.
We invite you to answer the call!
- The Birth 2012 Boston/Conscious Evolution Boston Hub