2005

Processes & Nature
Perelandra Processes: The Ambassador

We bought a house in Colorado that turned out to have a cockroach infestation in the kitchen. That is unheard of in Colorado—we don't get roaches here. I learned that the home was formerly rented by some drug dealers who must have brought the roaches in with their belongings.

The first year we put out roach motels and otherwise ignored it.

The second year, I talked to the roaches. This had worked with the deer in our yard. I talked to the Deva of Roaches and to each one that I saw. First I told them to please find another home and leave. No response. Then I began bartering, suggesting that they restrict themselves to just inside the walls, and stay out of the kitchen. No response. Then I tried demanding that they get out. (You can guess the response to that one.) We sprinkled all kinds of herbal things around the edges of our floors. Still no response.

The third year, my husband Gary got out the big guns. He got all kinds of super-toxic poison traps and sprays. (That was phenomenal because he is a rabid environmentalist in all other areas of his life.) Right about this time, I started noticing the parallels between our roach war and George Bush's actions against Iraq. And I watched roaches stagger around after eating poison. I saw some dead roaches and their children lying around. I watched TV and saw similar scenarios among the people of Iraq. Bush didn't mind killing people in Iraq because he felt justified in his cause and he didn't have to experience their pain himself. We got to the point where we were willing to kill roaches and their offspring right in their homes because we felt justified and didn't experience their pain ourselves. Gary even started squashing some of them. Our roach poisons didn't work, so we got a sonic machine that is supposed to chase roaches out via irritating piercing sounds. They didn't leave. Meanwhile, Bush escalated his actions against Iraq. The punishment to Iraqis got worse, but they didn't pack up and surrender their country. I begged the roaches all season long to please leave so we didn't have to keep doing this.

Finally, I called a total halt to our war. It was intolerable for me. I connected with the Roach Deva and asked for a meeting with them to come to an understanding. I knew it was time for me to listen. The next morning, I walked into my bathroom; a roach was on the sink counter and didn't scurry away. I shrieked and swept it into the toilet and flushed it. Omygod, the ambassador! It was too late to undo my actions, so I apologized. I begged them to be understanding of my frailties and give me another chance at the meeting. About two mornings later, I walked into the bathroom and there was a roach on the windowsill by the toilet. It also didn't run away when I approached. I swept it into the toilet before I realized what I was doing. Then I broke down crying, frustrated by how hard it was to overcome deep inner patterns. I connected with the Roach Deva, and we had the meeting without a personal representative of the roach nation present. Strangely, the Roach Deva didn't seem shocked or even too perturbed by my actions. It was not unexpected. I humbly apologized again, with a depth of sincerity that only an accidental killer can muster. We discussed what they wanted and needed: to be left alone to live their lives with their families, without someone giving them a lot of do's and don'ts. What I wanted and needed was to have my food left alone and for them to stay out of my appliances. We had a real discussion, and I felt relieved that they were still willing to come to some agreement with me.

About two months later, Gary pointed out that he hadn't seen a roach in ages. I realized that I hadn't seen one either. We don't know when they left, but they have been gone for two months now. Sometimes I still check in with my buddy the Roach Deva to wish them well and say thanks.

B.W., Colorado Springs, CO