to bee, or not to bee
by Nedda Wittels
it time to stop the war and develop a new relationship with insects?
As I passed through
my living room on a warm summer day, I noticed a bumblebee buzzing
against a window pane. Because I am telepathic with animals, I
immediately began to speak with the bee. I said “hello” in my usual
way, and told the bee that I wouldn’t harm it. What I felt was anger,
fear, and frustration mixed together.
I spoke aloud, then,
hoping to get the bee’s attention. “I know you want to be outside.
There is no food for you here. I will help you back outside when you
are calmer.” I left the room.
A short while later,
I came back and found the bee sitting on the floor in the middle of the
room, silent and still. I spoke to it again. “I am placing this
plastic container on the floor next to you.” I set down a clean, empty
container about 8 inches away. “If you want to go outside, climb into
the container, and I will take you out.” I left the room.
Fifteen minutes later
I found that the bumblebee had climbed into the container and was
waiting for me. I told the bee that I would lift and carry the
container as gently as I could and would place it outside. I asked the
bee to trust me to do this and to stay inside the container until we
were out of doors.
Slowly and very
carefully I lifted the container. When I opened my front door, before I
could even step onto the stoop, the bee flew off. I heard a small
voice, as if from a distance, say, “Thank you.”
Every form of life on
this planet is sacred.
When we recognize this and behave as if it were
true, we reap the benefits. Two experiences with yellow
jackets, a type of hornet that lives in the ground, were powerful
On the first
occasion, I was planning to transplant some day lilies. I called on the
Overlighting Deva (nature spirit) responsible for my property and also
the one responsible for the lilies. I asked permission to mow the grass
in the area where I wanted to plant the flowers and was told to go
ahead. My mower is a walking one, and the section of grass I need to
cut was very small. I went up and back several times over an area about
4 feet by 6 feet. Then I put the mower away.
Upon returning to the
patch, I noticed an insect flying upward and away. A second insect
passed it going in the opposite direction, down towards the ground. I
stopped moving and watched. A second pair of insects flew past each
other in the same pattern. They looked like yellow jackets.
From my childhood, I
knew that yellow jackets do not like their nest disturbed and are very
sensitive to vibration. An uncle of mine, who knew little of country
life, had once offered to mow our lawn. Without realizing it, he had
moved over a yellow jacket nest and was swarmed.
I looked around
cautiously to see where these hornets were landing. There was a small
hole in the ground right where I had mowed. The yellow jackets ignored
my presence entirely. I decided to speak with them.
“I hope I haven’t
disturbed your nest,” I began. “I am sorry if the mowing bothered you
in any way. I was going to plant flowers here, but now, in respect for
you home, I will not dig up the ground. However, please realize that
you have built your home in an inconvenient spot. In the fall, I will
need to rake up the leaves here. I will honor your space, but please do
not renew your nest here next year.” I was carefully not to disturb the
nest for the rest of that summer and fall, and I had no trouble with
The following autumn,
in October, when it was quite cool and the flowers in my large bed had
all died, I went out to cut the dead leaves and stalks from the irises,
day lilies, and peonies. It was a cool day, and I wasn’t thinking about
insects. I just assumed everyone would be gone by this time of year.
Much to my surprise,
I disturbed a nest of yellow jackets in the middle of the flower bed. I
had not bothered asking permission to work in the flower bed. I might
even have stepped right on their nest. As soon as I saw them flying
around, I ran into the garage. One determined yellow jacket followed me
all the way in and stung me. The insect reminded me that I had told
them not to build a nest in the lawn. I had not specified that the
flower bed was off limits as well. In addition, I had not asked
permission to work in that area.
The sting hurt.
The message was clear:
When we are disrespectful to beings whose form
is smaller than our own,
we show lack of respect for All Life.
next time you encounter an insect, stinging or biting or not, think of
it as an opportunity for you to show respect and appreciation.
Each form contributes to life on Planet Earth. If there are too
many holes in the Web of Life, it will fail entirely and humanity will
disappear. Have you honored an insect today?