Tag Archives: Natural Law

Oxygen Tank, Anyone?

Because of industrial agriculture, and because of changes in ocean currents caused by industrially induced global warming, there are increasing numbers of ever-larger hypoxic zones in oceans all over the planet. In some regions, such as off the coast of southern California, oxygen levels have dropped by 25 percent in the last twenty years. In some regions, such as a 1200-square-mile patch off the coast of Oregon last summer, there is essentially no oxygen in the water whatsoever. This kills bottom-dwelling creatures like crabs and stationary creatures like anemones, and forces fish to at the very least change their migration routes. It allows jellyfish and squid to move in, and causes great mats of anaerobic bacteria to grow.

Do you think that if these zones—caused by the activities of industrial civilization—were in the air and not water, and do you think that if these zones frequently passed over major cities and caused people to flee their homes or die, that those in power would stop the activities that were causing these zones?

Nah, I don’t think so either. I think they’d figure out a way to make a dollar selling tanks of oxygen. Soon enough, a lot of people would consider this normal. And a few environmentalists would get really fed up, and, why, by gum, they’d sign a petition, and maybe even ride their bike (recycled oxygen tank strapped to their organic cotton backpack) to their next Voluntary Transformation Club meeting. The earth can’t take this much longer. I don’t know about you, but neither can I.

—Derrick Jensen, from a letter to his inner-circle “reading club” and his upcoming book, Dreams

Our culture takes away all the real essentials in our lives—the things that naturally conduct health, joy, and connection—and then, in their place, offers “solutions.” These solutions are often welcomed and celebrated, and in time they become a seamless part of our reality.

To recognize this phenomenon, we must see through many layers of cultural illusion. It sounds absurd that one day we’ll think it’s normal to walk around with tanks of lab-generated oxygen strapped to our bodies for survival—can you imagine?!—but wait, look what we’ve already accepted as normal…

Our civilized climate is already inhospitable to the human organism. Yet we completely ignore this fact and assume that the shortcomings of our bodies, minds, and emotions in this setup are normal. In fact, we pay homage to modern medicine, psychology, and technology for providing solutions because, from this cultural vantage point, the alternative would be to perish, or at least to suffer as humankind did before these advances.

The very fact that our civilization is not life-generating to our species (let alone other species) remains hidden to most people. We are under the spell that our civilization should set the standard for all others—it should be revered. It brings to my mind the image of elegantly attired couples dancing on the Titanic as it’s sinking.

The so-called solutions reinforce the illusion that everything is running smoothly, that all is well and normal. They keep people believing in this culture. Sure, any number of citizens might see a movie like The 11th HourFood, Inc., orRevolutionary Road and feel a surge of outrage, but just as quickly that feeling fades and they fall back under the old spells that keep them dancing on the Titanic.

A culture (in our case, post-agricultural civilization) provides a blueprint for the life of its people, and the solutions it offers are like the nuts and bolts that hold the structure in place.

Imagine for a moment the common blueprint for the life of a child living the American Dream, with all its ups and downs: school, sports, play dates, getting sick, wearing glasses, getting braces, playing video games, skateboarding, watching television, sleepovers, tests, friendships, losing virginity, getting drunk, feeling reckless, summer jobs, graduation ceremonies, dates, proms, disappointments, finding a job, trying to please parents, running into trouble, making bad choices, excelling at something, feeling great about life, failing at something, feeling horrible about life, not understanding life but carrying on nonetheless, finding a mate, and so on and so on.

Cramming our lives with activity after activity, we become so busy, so intimately and multiply connected to the cultural blueprint, that we mistake it for who we really are. We become so entrenched in the demands of the blueprint that we fail to recognize that it enslaves us. The blueprint is so profoundly reinforced that it’s hard to recognize that it’s the cause of our pain and confusion—that is, if we’re aware enough even to acknowledge our pain and confusion.

If we take this cultural blueprint as our only guide, as our only means of navigation, we must accept all of its conditions and solutions:

• It fills the air with substances that inhibit the flow of our breathing. Solution: a steroid inhaler.

• It ruins our water supply and makes living spring water largely inaccessible. Solution: bottled water.

• It offers a life plan that begins with miseducation—forcing children to sit for hours on end indoors, imposing a curriculum that excludes essential information about the nature of our world, and filling the brain with facts that are drilled into memory only to be forgotten. Solution: PE classes that are more about discipline and competition than joy and playfulness.

• It offers stimulating, refined substances for our food and drink that make people of all ages expand with toxic by-products (e.g., gas pressure, fat deposits, yeast overgrowths). Solution: fewer calories and more exercise.

• It gives us many strained relationships with family and friends that suffer from deep disappointment and poor communication and remain broken in ways we don’t know how to fix. Solution: therapy, self-help books, and a “that’s life” approach.

• It gives us birth defects and childhood leukemia. Solution: fundraisers.

• It gives us infertility. Solution: Clomid, Clomid, and more Clomid. (Who knows, the next round might take!)

• It gives us cancer and so-called incurable autoimmune diseases. Solution: chemotherapy and more fundraisers.

• It programs us to be insatiable, materialistic, status-conscious consumers. Solution: credit cards and debt. (Or wait, is it the other way around?)

• It gives us self-serving, impotent governments and political parties. Solution: more of the same and fundraisers.

In the context of this cultural blueprint, the solutions (like the oxygen tank in Derrick Jensen’s above scenario) make sense and seem completely acceptable, normal, and necessary. But in the context of the natural laws of life, they are flat-out insane.

The natural health world of Pilates classes and power shakes may pose as an alternative solution, but it has actually been co-opted as a reinforcement of the mainstream blueprint. It has become an industry much like any other. Do you think the Aborigines, Cheyenne, Bushmen, or Hunzas ever attended exercise classes or drank power shakes? C’mon!

As adults, we must be told how to breathe deeply, something we were born knowing how to do (most children breathe properly without any instruction) but lost through acculturation. Moreover, there was a time, before the environmental assaults of our civilization, when the air was so well oxygenated that we could get more vitality by sipping the air than we can get today by deep breathing in our cities and suburbs.

We are encouraged to take multivitamins and mineral supplements. Why? Because the topsoil has been denatured by civilized methods of agriculture and food production, and people can’t be expected to eat enough fruits and vegetables.

We are offered antidepressants to combat the feelings of a blocked and imbalanced body (chemically, physically, and emotionally) because of the way we live.

We hand our children off to childcare facilities so we can work all day in jobs that support this juggernaut of madness. We even suggest such a modern setup proves the evolution of our culture and the empowerment of women. Sister Suffragette, please! It’s just another oxygen tank in a dying world—another of our civilization’s mad solutions!

We have places to put our parents when they can no longer live alone. Poetic justice for all those hours of being cared for by strangers and coming home to empty houses after school? We have lost touch with the life-generating, inter-generational threads. Rarely do we see a family in which the grandparents are honored as contributing forces of guidance.

We go to gyms to offset sedentary jobs. During the workday, we look forward to the lunch hour just as much as we looked forward to recess when we were in grade school.

We spend half our attention on communication devices but never really connect from the heart or even hear what our own inner voices are trying to tell us.

We have very few examples of real love relationships but an endless stream of romantic entertainment, matchmaking services, and dream weddings.

We spend our precious lives working jobs we hate to pay for things we’ve been programmed to think we need.

We have no oxygen. We are wearing oxygen tanks. We perceive it to be normal. This level of cultural absurdity has already come to pass. What are we going to do about it?

Our bodies are dying, suffering all manner of illnesses because we are so clogged up and the vital fluids of life cannot do their job. Blood flow, lymph flow, and intestinal flow are all blocked and septic. What do we do? We turn to doctors, pharmaceuticals, “natural remedies,” vitamins, and super-food supplements to help us counter symptoms that we fail to understand. With these in hand, we go about the “bon continuation” of our toxic lives and accept the toxic norms, teaching our children how to follow in our footsteps.

Many who see through the illusions of our world end up turning on themselves because they don’t know what else to do. They often hide behind substance abuse and addiction. It seems that every day another celebrity or former child-star has died of a drug overdose or other form of suicide, not to mention all the non-celebrities who slip away from life unseen. Many more will follow. Rich or poor, famous or unknown, the set design is the same—whether elaborate or Spartan, it’s still a façade.

If we continue to accept the “solutions” offered by our cultural blueprint, we will come to accept that oxygen tank. As long as we work in jobs we hate to buy more junk to distract us and reinforce our illusions, we are working toward this oxygen tank. One day, we will heed the advertisement, “Yes, it may be expensive, but your life is worth it!” We will save for it like parents save to send their kids to college—working our whole lives so our children can break through to the next level of societal acceptance, the ultimate validation in a world gone mad.

If we continue to ignore the depletion of oxygen in our oceans, rivers, and lakes—which are the very lifeblood of the earth and all of its inhabitants—there will come a day, sooner than we realize, when we will all need artificial oxygen just to live. The scariest part of this scenario is that we will come to accept it as normal.

The earth can’t take this much longer. I don’t know about you, but neither can I.

For Love of Oxygen and Consciousness,

The Biggest Lie

In his 1925 autobiography, Mein Kampf, Hitler coins the term “the big lie,” which refers to a form of propaganda that pivots on telling a lie so “colossal” that no one would believe anyone “could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously.” A “certain force of credibility” runs through this big lie so people will find it easy to accept. Of course, in accusing an entire people of this falsehood, he was employing the very technique that he was describing, and would continue to do so toward the most monstrous ends.

But don’t think for a moment that any of us are safe from the machinery of “the big lie” today. This enduring, insidious force is very much alive, woven into the very roots of our society.

In our times, governments and corporations still heavily employ “the big lie” psychology with enormous success, their minions none the wiser. In fact, just about all the foundational aspects of our culture can be traced back to one of their big lies: they have convinced us of what to consume, what to put on and in our bodies, what to expect of our health, and what to expect out of life. We accept this way of life because we believe it is correct and created for our highest good, or at least the best that we can expect, given humankind’s extensive shortcomings and iniquitous wiring (which we also accept).

The biggest lie is that it’s all okay—that while our culture may not be perfect, it is the best way of life imaginable thus far, and if we just keep following this trajectory, we’ll eventually make things even better. That is THE BIGGEST LIE!

One BIG TRUTH is that we are consuming our planet at warp speed and we are very close to the point (if we’re not already there) where we cannot save it. While everyone now agrees that change is necessary, few people seem to grasp just how dire the situation is, certainly not enough to reject the entrenched norms. No sane organism devastates the organism that feeds and supports it. Consider what cancer and autoimmune diseases are: cells that attack the healthy cells and tissue (or blood, bone, lymph) of the body.

Worse still, we have bought the diversion that merely recycling and buying more environmentally conscious products and vehicles will offset this devastation in a meaningful way. We should be as conscious as we can, yes, and obviously we should reduce, recycle, and reuse. Any awake, thinking person can figure that out!

Here’s what really has to happen: we must stop consuming products that are produced by large corporations and made from commonly raised animals and sea life. This is the only way to halt the deadly march of corporations who wreak destruction on us all while reaping the riches of the big lie! It is no exaggeration to say that they, along with everyone who purchases their products, are raping the planet, snuffing out life and deranging the biomass of the animals they raise. Clearly, this should not only be illegal, but there should be some global policy against it. There are laws, yes, but they don’t apply to those who can pay others to look the other way.

Here’s the thing: these factions can only keep up this nonsense so long as people keep buying what they are selling. Consumers need to stop buying their products and thereby put them out of business. It’s really that easy. Yes, jobs would be lost—many jobs—but the beauty of creative destruction is that something better will spring up in its place for these workers. Keeping people employed is not a good enough reason to perpetuate the carnal consumption of our precious resources. Convenience is not a good enough reason. Fear of change is not a good enough reason. Tell me one reason that is good enough—I surely cannot think of one! Yet I can think of countless reasons to support changing our way of life!

We have been brainwashed into wanting and craving and thinking we need all sorts of rubbish as we suffocate our bodies and spirits and kill off the life around us. In this way, we continually fatten these corporations, which couldn’t care less about the future of our planet—they care only about the here and now, plundering more resources for money and power. And we sit around and let them do it! Just as generations before us sat around and watched the genocide of indigenous cultures as colonialists wiped them out in the name of expansion, discovery, and exploration. Just as we sit around and wear pink ribbons and hold social functions to raise money for childhood diseases instead of seeing that our way of life is the cause of all those cancers, emotional imbalances, learning disabilities, and so on. We just nod along to the hypnotic cadence of the news reporters’ iambic pentameter as they dish up the gobbledygook.

I’m just sick of it. And frankly, I’m tired of being polite about it. What’s the point of being polite now? Polite to whom, and at whose expense? What about being polite to the life of our planet, the ecosystems, the animals being pushed out of their habitats, or to our own sick bodies and spirits? I am guilty of imposing some of these expected limitations on my own children, who are so beautifully instinctual; in a world restrained by social disciplines, I’m the first to admit what a slave I’ve been to their rules. I try to remind myself that my children need to know both the world’s ways and the alternative ways of living. I tell myself that this is how to arm them with the knowledge and experience necessary to become effective “bridgers.” I am trying to dance the dance that is required in this shadowy, transitional era.

But what do you say to a world that would rather eat cheap chicken grown at 400 times the normal rate and pumped with antibiotics and hormones than consider the alternatives? To a world that thinks nothing of wasting resources, killing off 200 species A DAY and the ecosystems in which they live in order to sustain the mass production of processed meats and substances? To a world that’s too busy Christmas shopping and worrying about health insurance but never connects the dots between these things? To a world that thinks a cancer vaccine can be created to cure cancer, or that diseases are simply a question of genetics? What you say to such a world is, WAKE UP!

I tell you, I’m just not into being polite anymore. In the dire game of survival on this planet, the sleeping masses stand in the way of life, like rogue bacteria. We are not islands. We are one organism intermingling on the same planet. We should do all we can to live cleanly as individuals, but we still have to reside among the combined emissions of the entire population and the biochemical makeup of the earth. We can fast on green juices and cleanse our internal organs to the best of our ability, but every cell of our being is still breathing in the compound substance of the entire organism.

If we want change, if we really want to keep life on this planet an option—good life, not deranged life—we have to stop consuming what we’ve been programmed to consume. We must stop destroying the fabric of our bodies and our world. We cannot carry on as if it doesn’t matter, not without dire consequences, which we’re already seeing. And as the planet becomes more and more irritated by the cancer of misguided human consumption on its delicate surface and tries to shake it off, just as the body tries to fight off illness, there will be symptoms! And symptoms on a planetary scale will surely cause mass devastation. With or without our help, the earth will have to fight to regain its balance.

Daniel Quinn writes in Ishmael: “Nonetheless, I tell you with complete confidence that something extraordinary is going to happen in the next two or three decades. The people of our culture are going to figure out how to live sustainably or they are not. And either way it’s certainly going to be extraordinary.” I agree. Either we are going to have a renaissance and give birth to a whole new way of life that we can only begin to conceive of now or we will perish. As he says, either way it will be an extraordinary sequence of events.

Many people believe the Earth was created for humankind, but the fact is, life was here long before the arrival of our species. And even then, the planet thrived for a long time more before civilization came along coating it with cement and poisonous by-products.

As I face the New Year, I am determined to help conceive and execute a new vision. I will never again ask myself, How can I fit in or be accepted in this social structure? I will ask, How can I transform it into something that is unanimously life-supporting? 

So the question becomes, What is the vision? and then How are we going to build it? We can start by determining what’s worth keeping—all the best of human expression, creativity, and understanding. And determine what isn’t—the clearly offensive and destructive practices of humankind. From there we can create a new lifestyle that reflects this vision, even if it means losing some so-called conveniences along the way, like having the exact type of food we want when we want it, or using cheap plastic to manufacture all manner of products and packaging, or having huge homes and driving multiple cars. But first, we must truly believe, deep down, that our well-being, our life-experience, and having reliably healthy bodies and balanced emotions are worth the change!

Who among us, if given the choice between living as a man (or woman) and living for the man, would choose the latter? Yet that’s what the vast majority of us do in our culture. Food is a natural resource that our planet can easily and abundantly provide, yet we have structured our food consumption in such a way that we spend our lives working (mostly in jobs we can barely stand, day after day, decade after decade) to put dead, processed food in our family’s mouths.

I remember I was in the fourth grade when I heard someone say that the troubles of the world and the devastation of the planet would be left for my generation to fix. I thought, Okay, that seems unfair, but at least my generation will be smart enough to do it—we’ll correct what all those silly adults have done! But here we are and things have only gotten exponentially worse. Now the same is being said of my children’s generation.

What happens to us when we get older? The same thing that happens to bright leaders who take positions in government: we get scared. We question our vision, the impulses that once inspired us to act, and kowtow to the norms because the authorities behind them sound so gosh-darned bossy and authoritative! Self-doubt and fear of being wrong, or worse, haunts our true expression! It’s the primal pain of growing up: as children, filled with energy and clarity, we act on creative impulses that naturally conflict with the adult world, and what happens? We get punished!

I confess, I perceive far more than I talk about publicly. There are things I’d like to say that I censor EVERY TIME I COMMUNICATE, unless I’m with a close, like-minded friend whom I can trust. I can’t do it to that degree anymore for the simple reason that I’ve come to understand that silence kills. The more I let my fear keep a lid on what I really think, the more I allow the devastation. It’s like watching a person get abused or just standing by as a thief steals an old lady’s purse!

One thoughtful reader commented that my voice in this blog sounds angry. I agree with the mystic Almine, who explains that anger is the desire to protect. As a living being, it is natural to feel anger when something threatens the health of your world, inside or out. Being a peaceful warrior does not mean being insipid. We can practice equanimity and still hear the inner alarm bell of anger warning that something worth protecting is being threatened. To ignore or repress this siren is folly. We must honor ALL our feelings (see my 11/6/08 blog on anger). The question to ask is:What does this anger show us that we couldn’t see before? 

Friends, we have to start seeing things as they are. We have to stop consuming what we are told to consume, seeing the world as we were taught to see it, accepting things just because they have some element of credibility without looking more closely.

Increased perception is power. We can change the world. We can eradicate the old blueprint that’s destroying everything good in our world and replace it with a much greater vision. We have to believe that this is possible. We have to believe that we are innovative enough to pioneer a new way of life. We don’t need to accept the expectations and limitations imposed upon us—that’s THE BIG LIE talking in order to satisfy the agenda of those who don’t care what happens after they are gone.

There is no easy way forward. We have to start forging the way, step by step:

Step #1: See that our way of life does not work for humans, or for any life forms at all.

Step #2: Recognize that the origins of our suffering come from our way of life.

Step #3: Realize that we do not need to abandon what is good in our world or return to living in caves. We must move forward, not back.

Step #4: Recognize that we are social beings in a culture that undervalues community.

Step #5: Create a new vision for society and innovate where necessary.

So many of us today are isolated; families are scattered; individuals are depressed and lonely. We must build more wholesome, unifying community experiences. Our current approaches to education and employment are colossal failures. These major building blocks of our way of life desperately require a complete redesign—an entirely new vision that is meant for humans, not for herd animals. When children are allowed to blossom more holistically, their natural talents and curiosities turn them into self-directed dynamos, brimming with enthusiasm for learning, leading to fulfilling expressions of their talents.

In this vision of the future, balanced, sovereign individuals will be rich with natural enthusiasm, integrity, and productivity. Clear, well-balanced people want to be creative and spend their time constructively. It’s a natural human desire to envision new things, craft, build, and innovate. Most people are at their happiest when they are engrossed in something creative.

I don’t have all the answers, and I am but one voice among many brothers and sisters in our human family, but I’m confident that, together, we can knit a beautiful new world that honors life in all its miraculous forms. I hope to offer more hopeful visions and practical steps as I play my part, and I hope you will do the same. But for now, I offer these sentiments as logs on the fire of life. I also plan to share my own experiences of culling the non-necessities in my own lifestyle as I undertake to be more conscientious than I’ve ever been before.

Don’t be afraid to say that you don’t like the way things are done or how they are affecting you and the world. Do you remember what happens in The Wizard of Oz when Dorothy melts the witch? The monkey soldiers, who seemed so loyal to her before, break out in celebration upon her assassination! People are walking around defending a way of life that doesn’t work because they are so confused by it and what the alternatives might be. Just think how relieved everyone will be to see there’s a way out of their suffering!

It’s time for a renaissance. Let’s pull together and create something extraordinary, for we human beings are far more extraordinary than this culture we cling to!

For further inspiration, here is a poem by William Ernest Henley, titled “Invictus,” which is enjoying the spotlight, thanks to an inspiring new film by the same name—about South Africa winning the Rugby World Cup championship in 1995, and all that it meant to the nation’s blossoming rebirth. I feel that it applies well here. Apparently, Nelson Mandela turned to this poem for support throughout his twenty-seven-year imprisonment on Robben Island.


Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

—William Ernest Henley

The Book of Life

I would like to share a concept I personally enjoy using that has helped me to understand the way things unfold in our world—why some beings grow beautifully and radiate life while others wilt with lifelessness. I like to call this tool The Book of Life.

This version of The Book of Life is not a giant leather-bound document that sits on a podium at the entrance of the proverbial pearly gates with a list of names of those who will (or won’t) be permitted into heaven. This Book of Life does not discriminate arbitrarily according to the bias of an anthropomorphic judge, or of a more charitable benefactor dolling out forgiveness like Hail Mary’s. I’m not talking about any biblical or manmade book.

Rather, this version of The Book of Life is the very living soup in which we live and swim; it tells the story of what generates life and what deteriorates it. The ability to read this living story playing out all around us gives us a unique power of perception to understand why some things in our world thrive while others face sure ruin. This is perhaps the most essential form of literacy for a human being, a language that everyone should know but that no educational institution in our culture teaches.

Reading this Book of Life is something of a lost science. The wizards, magi, white witches, high sorcerers (call them what you will) were the keepers of this sacred knowledge. They understood the Natural Laws that explained why something would thrive or deteriorate. They were fluent in the essential communication of life and practiced vigilance as their world unfolded in patterns of blossoming or wilting based on the seeds of what was set in motion.

They observed life in its macrocosmic expressions such as in the health and viability of the solar system as well as in the most microcosmic expressions such as in the cleanliness of the smallest cells. Both the micro- and macrocosmic universes told them the story of these life forms and how they interacted with the whole.

Sickness and deterioration were not mysteries to those fluent in the language of life as they are to modern science. The wise ones would not go into laboratories or pass buckets around community centers to fund experiments for cures. They would trace the undesirable outcome back to its source, the original offense to the Natural Laws, and take steps to correct it. Their fluency would also allow them to divine the outcomes of myriad situations—whether individual, social, or organic—before it was too late.

Once you become literate and fluent in the language of life, you, too, will be able to divine the probable outcomes of the choices you make. Blossoming and wilting are not punishment and reward; both are the predictable expressions of natural energetic flow. A life-generating choice will render a blossoming effect. A life-deteriorating choice will render a wilting effect.

When you step back far enough to gain perspective and read The Book of Life in this way, coming to recognize the patterns of how life unfolds, the effects of your choices will become astonishingly predictable. In fact, the first time you make this connection, you will suddenly wonder, How could I not have seen that before? 

We all have the ability to become our own “prophets” and “seers”—it is actually more of an analytical exercise than a magical one because the Laws of Nature undergirding our physical world are scientifically rooted in fact. Certain things add up to support life and other things add up to undermine it. Most people today fail to put these pieces together because this way of seeing is so foreign to our culturally skewed perceptions.

We learn lots of facts in school and gain some practice in critical thinking, but I have never in all my years of schooling found an institution to teach me about the laws of life. I had to find those on my own, after much searching.

Every generation experiences a distinct mix of the lows to which it has sunk and the heights to which it’s capable of rising. The lows and highs of our generation are engaged in a bit of a tug-o-war, but the risers among us will help to lift all of our brothers and sisters by becoming more “life literate”—by learning The Book of Life as we might have learned a history text in grade school. Becoming “life literate” means literally learning how to read the signs that life is constantly showing us—all of the blossoming and joy and pain and deterioration around us.

Pain, as I have written previously, is not a nuisance, but an alarm bell that tells us something is wrong and requires an adjustment or change somewhere in the works. But we have so many false ways to silence the alarms that only suppress rather than dissolve the pain. We must learn to recognize and receive its message. Only then can we begin to return ourselves—physically and emotionally, individually and universally—to peace and wellness.

I enjoy reading The Book of Life. To me, it is the most engaging book of all. Life is spread out all around us, imparting the most vital stories available to humankind. To learn the language of life is to discover that all the pain, chaos, beauty, and harmony makes sense. When you learn what supports life and what doesn’t, you realize that you really can choose your experiences, not because of some trendy new-age ideology, but because there are indeed Natural Laws undergirding life: certain things that sow a future harvest and others that seal certain drought.

The book is open all around you. Tune in and take pleasure—the more you read, the better reader you become.

Here’s to a new kind of literacy!


Mainstream Modernity vs. The Trajectory of Truth

Dear Love-lights,

My family and I have just returned from five days on a private island in the Bahamas called Little Whale Cay. It was one of those once-in-a-lifetime trips—the gift of our very dear friends whose extravagance and generosity know no bounds. We were eight adults with our children and a small staff whose sole purpose was to meet our every need, poolside, beachside and tableside. We were all alone without any form of modern stimulation. There was the sun overhead, sand underfoot, and curious island plant and animal life to entertain us—nothing more.

The children roamed the island with pure delight, playing with hermit crabs, spying on lizards, and just strolling peacefully, chatting together for hours at a time. The adults, to our credit, didn’t crack a cell phone or laptop or even check for email on our handheld devices. Instead, we all blissed-out on unrushed conversations and languid thoughts about…well, for example, nautilus shells and the curvature of the horizon. What made this trip so special was the lack of any modern stimulation. Without even realizing it, we became what I’ve come to refer to as “stimulation virgins.”

Residing in pure, unadulterated peace became so normal for us, that upon arriving at Nassau airport we experienced a most unwelcome assault to the senses. Suddenly, there were countless shops, fast food odors, advertisements clamoring for our attention, travelers bickering over places in line, brusque security officers, parents openly popping Xanax while feeding their gameboy-entranced children another bag of candy, and media screens flashing everywhere. In that moment, my husband and I shared a look of complete understanding of all the problems of the modern world.

We’d been sheltered from the discordant, modern life for only five days, but in that relatively short period gained precious perspective. The modern world never looked so obviously pained to me as it did just then and in the subsequent few days before my energy readjusted and I began to check emails, watch the presidential debates, enter shops and hail cabs again. I did not want to lose the clarity I had in that moment as a “stimulation virgin,” which reminded me of what’s truly important in life.

When we allow ourselves to merge with the discordant vibes of the modern world, we compromise our perspective and distort our choices. We are necessarily swayed by exposure to media, conditioned thinking, and conventionally minded people, which can make this cleansing lifestyle challenging in the city. These influences can throw even the most enlightened practitioners off the trajectory of truth.

Let’s stay with this concept of “trajectory” for a moment. We don’t need to be prophetic to see where we are headed. The best way to predict the future is to consider the trajectory we are on and the direction in which it is taking us. If we veer off the trajectory of love, clean living, clean food, clean water and air, we will arrive at a place of relative emotional and physical suffering (on the individual, communal, as well as global levels). If we take our guidance from those who are way off the trajectory of truth, we cannot possibly expect to find healing solutions (kind of reminiscent of the old biblical concepts of the “straight and narrow path” and the exodus “out of bondage,” isn’t it?).

This is why pharmaceutical drugs and modern psychology will never resolve our suffering (or carry us “out of bondage”)—they are as misguided as the environment from which they have sprung, offering temporary band-aid solutions at best. We won’t find real healing from such sources. It’s a classic case of the blind leading the blind!

So when we hear seemingly educated people insisting they have the answers for health care in this country, or the results of some new study, or know what drug will relieve the latest ailment or prevent aging, yada yada yada…we will know better. Our job is not to enter their misguided worlds and debate them on their level, but to hop on the one true trajectory and ride it without compromise—like following a rainbow to its glorious source of sunlight and rain!

The only way to remedy our physical, emotional and communal ills is to transition back to a condition that is rooted in the pure truth. This requires us to be diligent enough to sustain the vision long enough to bring it to fruition. Every little step we take toward truth—living from the heart (rather than the head), nourishing the body with nature’s most perfect foods, and striving for harmony in all that we do—will reduce suffering and increase joy.

What is sad and downright frightening is that most people don’t even recognize their own suffering because it blends in with the common suffering of everyone else around them, and therefore passes for normal. However, this false trajectory is anything but normal for human life. Consider where our modern ways are taking us, my newly prophetic friends. Follow the course of that trajectory several miles out and see where it goes.

Ask yourself: “Does the choice before me align with life-generating perspectives from the trajectory of truth, or is it thwarted by a world that I’ve unwittingly merged with my consciousness?” Follow it several miles out. Where does it lead? There you will be able to see at once your past, present and future.

Here’s to riding together on the trajectory of truth—miles and miles out!

From the heart,