Earth Calling: A Climate Change Handbook for the 21st Century (Sacred Activism) by Ellen Gunter (Author), Ted Carter (Author), Caroline Myss (Foreword)


Our earliest mythologies tell us we all start as a little bit of dirt. These stories carry a profound message: each of us is born with a deep and abiding connection to the earth, one that many of us have lost touch with. The Silent Spring for today’s environmental activists, this book offers an invitation to reestablish our relationship with nature to repair our damaged environment.

Chapter 1 examines the threats to the planet’s health through the lens of the human energy system known as the chakras, describing how the broken first chakra relates to our disconnection from our biosphere.

Chapter 2 shows how our current environmental crises–global warming, climate change, dwindling water resources, natural disasters such as wildfires and hurricanes–represent severe manifestations of our disconnection from the earth.

Chapter 3 describes how the preponderance of oil in our culture–especially agribusiness–compounds this disconnection, from our dependence on other countries for our energy, to current issues of oil depletion, peak oil, and fracking, to the dumbing down of our agricultural polyculture.

Chapter 4 explains how the most basic building blocks of our nourishment–seeds–are being compromised with a loss of biodiversity and rise of GMOs, and how that adversely affects the farmers whose sacred connection to the land has in many cases been severed.

Chapter 5 describes the ways in which we as individuals can begin to wake up to climate activism as a spiritual practice. This chapter includes specific activities that you can use to implement change and heal your own connection to the earth. By learning and practicing ritual and understanding the earth’s rhythms and seasonal rites of passage, each of us can find unique ways to heal our own connections and help others heal theirs.

Chapter 6 brings to life Goethe’s wisdom: “Knowing isn’t enough; neither is being willing. We must do,” by providing strategies and resources for exploring how each of us can find our own Earth Calling, then anchoring that calling with the only force that ignites change: Action.

ELLEN GUNTER is a climate activist who lectures, delivers Al Gore’s slideshow on climate change, and writes about the connections between spirituality and the environment. TED CARTER has been designing earth-centric landscapes along the northeast coast for more than thirty years. His award-winning work has been featured in local and national publications. The authors live in Oak Park, IL/Buxton, ME

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Environment crisis: Breaking free from conditioning – Ellen Gunter

Ellen Gunter is a journalist, spiritual director and co-author of Reunion: How we heal our broken connection to the earth. An advocate of ecological concerns since reading Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring as a teen, her deep concern about the health of the earth has remained a constant in her political and social life. Reunion explores the interconnectedness of the environment with our mental, physical and spiritual health and details how each of us can begin to rediscover our connection to our planet through meaningful exercises and a willingness to look more deeply at what surrounds and calls to us. http://ellengunter.com/

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You Can Change the World: The Global Citizen’s Handbook for Living on Planet Earth by Ervin Laszlo (Author), Mikhail Gorbachev (Introduction), Paulo Coelho (Afterword),

You Can Change the World: The Global Citizen’s Handbook for Living on Planet Earth should be required reading for anyone who cares about the future of the planet. Written by renowned scientist, futurist and Club of Budapest founder Ervin Laszlo, You Can Change the World answers two pertinent questions-first, what is at the root of all the conflict and crisis in today’s world? And second, what can actually be done to move toward a world where we can live in peace, without marginalizing and killing each other and destroying the environment?

A handbook that urges readers to become global citizens who aspire to live responsibly on this precious but highly exploited and crisis-prone planet, You Can Change the World provides a simple and basic message: in today’s world it is neither wealth nor power, nor the control of territory and technology that make the crucial difference. How we think and act shapes our present and decides our future.

Dr. Laszlo is generally recognized as the founder of systems philosophy and general evolution theory. His work in recent years has centered on the formulation and development of the “Akasha Paradigm,” the new conception of cosmos, life and consciousness emerging at the forefront of the contemporary sciences. He serves as President of the Club of Budapest, Chairman of the Ervin Laszlo Center for Advanced Study, Chancellor of the Giordano Bruno New-Paradigm University, and Editor of World Futures: The Journal of New Paradigm Research.

He is recipient of the highest degree in philosophy and human sciences from the Sorbonne, the University of Paris, as well as of the coveted Artist Diploma of the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Budapest. Additional prizes and awards include four honorary doctorates.

His appointments have included research grants at Yale and Princeton Universities, professorships for philosophy, systems sciences, and future sciences at the Universities of Houston, Portland State, and Indiana, as well as Northwestern University and the State University of New York. His career also included guest professorships at various universities in Europe and the Far East. In addition, he worked as program director for the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR). In 1999 he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the Canadian International Institute of Advanced Studies in Systems Research and Cybernetics.

For many years he has served as president of The Club of Budapest, which he founded. He is an advisor to the UNESCO Director General, ambassador of the International Delphic Council, member of both the International Academy of Science, World Academy of Arts and Science, and the International Academy of Philosophy.

Twice nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize (2004, 2005), he got Goi Peace prize (2001). He has authored more than 70 books, which have been translated into twenty languages, and has published in excess of four hundred articles and research papers, including six volumes of piano recordings.

Ervin Laszlo on The Future of Our World

Dr. Ervin Laszlo, is a world-renowned philosopher of science, systems theorist and integral theorist as well as a classical pianist. A true Renaissance man and citizen of the world, he is the author of over 80 books translated into 21 languages. In this interview we discuss the very timely book he edited with Allan Combs called Thomas Berry, Dreamer of the Earth — The Spiritual Ecology of the Father of Environmentalism. It contains 10 essays by eminent philosophers, thinkers, and scientists that focus on the environmental and social crises facing humanity and the urgent need for a massive paradigm shift.
Read about this book and others at http://www.ncreview.com/

The Nondual Activist: Interrelatedness & Justice, Drew Dellinger


The eco-philosopher Joanna Macy has stated that, “the sense of connectedness with all beings is politically subversive in the extreme.” In this talk, Drew Dellinger will explore the links between changing our worldview and changing the world. By examining the world-views of connection and mutuality present in all traditional cultures, we can better recognize the cosmology of separation and exploitation underlying the modern West’s ecologically and socially destructive philosophies and practices.

This talk gives an overview of the ecological and cosmological vision of Thomas Berry, the wisdom of Indigenous and African traditions, the worldview of Martin Luther King Jr., and the emerging movements for social and ecological transformation as examples of what Dellinger calls, “a cosmology of connection.”

Living in a thoroughly interconnected cosmos challenges us to act with compassion, discernment, and ethical integrity. From personal transformation, to collective social change, the ontological nonduality of existence calls us to recognize systemic injustice and deepen our expressions of prophetic courage, healing, and loving-kindness.

Drew Dellinger Ph.D., is a poet, teacher, writer and speaker who has
inspired minds and hearts around the world, performing poetry and
keynoting on justice, ecology, cosmology and compassion. He is also a consultant, publisher, and founder of Planetize the Movement Press. http://www.drewdellinger.org

Eckhart Tolle talks about Our Ecological Situation

Published on Aug 5, 2015

Eckhart Tolle answers the question, “How can we address our ecological situation?” For more information about THE POWER OF NOW visit http://www.newworldlibrary.com.

Love Letter to the Milky Way: a book of poems by Drew Dellinger

A small book of very big poems. Drew Dellinger’s poetry reaches out to the far ends of the Milky Way and to the inner depths of the soul. His poetry and performances have captivated thousands across six continents. He is, in the words of Cornell West, “one of the most creative, courageous and prophetic poets of his generation.” This power of his poetry is tied to his passion for ecological survival and social justice movements. The Rev. Osagyefo Sekou calls Dellinger “the poet laureate of the global justice democracy movement.”

it’s 3:23 in the morning
and I’m awake
because my great great grandchildren
won’t let me sleep
my great great grandchildren
ask me in my dreams
what did you do while the planet was plundered?
what did you do when the earth was unraveling?
from the poem “hieroglyphic stairway” read on the floor of Congress during climate change hearings


Drew Dellinger (Ph.D. candidate) is an internationally sought-after speaker, poet, writer, and teacher who has inspired minds and hearts around the world, performing poetry and keynoting on justice, ecology, cosmology, and compassion. He is also a consultant, publisher, and founder of Planetize the Movement.

Dellinger has presented at over 1000 events across the U.S., U.K., Canada, and Australia. He has spoken and performed at numerous conferences–including Bioneers, the Green Festival, the Dream Reborn, and the Parliament of the World’s Religions–as well as colleges and universities, poetry venues, protests, and places of worship. He has shared podiums and stages with luminaries such as Alice Walker, Cornel West, Thomas Berry, Danny Glover, Julia Butterfly Hill, Brian Swimme, Paul Hawken, Ani Difranco, Chuck D, Eve Ensler, and many others.

Dellinger’s award-winning book of poems, love letter to the milky way–now in its fifth printing–has thousands of devoted readers on six continents. His work has appeared in films, books, anthologies and magazines–from The New York Times magazine to YES!, Tikkun, Kosmos, and others. Dellinger’s poems have been cited and quoted in venues ranging from prison workshops to climate change hearings before the U.S. Congress.

Dellinger co-wrote the documentary film, “The Awakening Universe,” which premiered at the United Nations. As a consultant, Dellinger helped develop and design the Pachamama Alliance’s Awakening the Dreamer, Changing the Dream Symposium, now used in 54 countries, in 14 languages. In 1997 Dellinger received Common Boundary magazine’s national Green Dove Award. In 2010 he received a Writer’s Digest Book Award.

Dellinger has taught at Prescott College, Naropa University–Oakland, Esalen Institute, Sophia Center, and John F. Kennedy University, where he was Associate Professor and Director of the Program in Social Ecology. He studied cosmology and ecological thought with Thomas Berry for twenty years, and is currently finishing his doctoral dissertation on the last years of Martin Luther King Jr.

Dellinger has been called “a national treasure,” by Joanna Macy, “a deep and courageous poet,” by Alice Walker and “one of the most creative, courageous and prophetic poets of his generation,” by Cornel West.

Book Trailer / Love Letter To The Milky Way

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Love Letter to the Milky Way: A Celebration

Drew Dellinger

Published on Aug 3, 2015

IONS 2015 Conference

Pope Francis’ Encyclical: Hearing the Cry of the Earth

By Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

The Earth “now cries out to us because of the harm we have inflicted on her.” So begins Pope Francis in his powerful and long-awaited encyclical on ecology. “The earth herself, burdened and laid waste, is among the most abandoned and maltreated of our poor.”

Pope Francis chose to be called after a saint for whom love for all of God’s creation was central to his life, and all creatures were his brothers and sisters. Speaking in the voice of this saint “who loved and protects creation,” he calls for a moral response to prevent the “unprecedented destruction of the ecosystem,”–that we urgently need to recognize the consequences of, and changes required in our way of life. He reflects on our abuse, the violence creating “the symptoms of illness that we see in the Earth, the water, the air and in living things.” And describing how climate change most adversely affects the poor, he combines ecological and social justice, that we “hear both the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor.”

The state of the Earth is our most pressing concern. Our present ecological crisis is the greatest man-made disaster this planet has ever faced: the signs of global imbalance, climate change, and species depletion are all around us. The monster of materialism is ravaging the Earth, its rapacious greed destroying the ecosystem, the fragile web of life that supports and nourishes all of life’s myriad creatures. We are part of a world of wonder and beauty which we are systematically sacrificing to feed our ever-increasing desires. We need to remember the simple wonder of the natural world around us, which St. Francis celebrated in his beautiful Canticle of Brother Sun:

Praised be You, my Lord, through Sister Mother Earth,
who sustains us and governs us and who produces
varied fruits with colored flowers and herbs.

Yesterday, when I went to my small vegetable patch to pick a few zucchinis for supper, I was once again amazed at the Earth’s generosity, how one plant could give so many vegetables. I had to look carefully under the spreading leaves to discover a zucchini unexpectedly growing almost too large. This is the sacred life that sustains us, part of the creation we desperately need to “love and protect,” just as it loves and protects us.

A central but rarely addressed aspect of this crisis is our forgetfulness of the sacred nature of creation, and how this affects our relationship to the environment. Pope Francis speaks of the pressing need to articulate a spiritual response to this ecological crisis and to “feel intimately united with all that exists.” Today’s world is dominated by a divisiveness that encourages exploitation and greed, and we need to return to a sense of wholeness, reflecting the living unity of all of creation and its myriad inhabitants.

The Earth needs both physical and spiritual attention and awareness, our acts and prayers, our hands and hearts. Life is a self-sustaining organic whole of which we are a part, and once we reconnect with this whole we can find a different way to live–one that is not based upon a need for continual distraction and the illusions of material fulfillment, but rather a way to live that is sustaining for the whole.

Each in our own way we can turn away from the patterns of consumerism that drain our money and our life energy. We can aspire to live a simpler life, learning how to live in a more sustainable way, and not be drawn into unnecessary materialism–filling our life with love and care rather than “stuff.” A simple meal of vegetables and grains cooked with love and attention can nourish our body and soul.

But, to speak more with the voice of St. Francis, the Earth also needs our prayers, our spiritual attention. Many of us know the effectiveness of prayers for others, how healing and help is given, even in the most unexpected ways. It can be helpful first to acknowledge that the Earth is not “unfeeling matter,” but a living being that has given us life. And then we can “hear its cry,” sense its suffering: the physical suffering we see in the dying species and polluted waters–the deeper suffering of our collective disregard for its sacred nature.

Pope Francis ends his encyclical with two prayers for our Earth. There is also the simple prayer of placing the world as a living being within our hearts when we inwardly offer our self to the Divine. In this prayer we remember the sorrow and suffering of the Earth in our hearts, and ask that that the world be remembered, that divine love and mercy flow where it is needed; that even though we continue to treat the world so badly, divine grace will help us and help the world–help to bring the Earth back into balance. We need to remember that the power of the Divine is more than that of all the global corporations that continue to make the world a wasteland, even more than the global forces of consumerism that demand the life-blood of the planet. We pray that the Divine of which we are all a part can redeem and heal this beautiful and suffering world.

Sometimes it is easier to pray when we feel the earth in our hands, when we work in the garden tending our flowers or vegetables. Or when we cook, preparing the vegetables that the Earth has given us, mixing in the herbs and spices that give us pleasure. There are many ways to pray, and we will each find our own way of tending the Earth within our own hearts. Just as the song of St. Francis calls us to praise the Earth, and to praise God “through all your creatures.”

As Pope Francis’s message reminds us, we each need to be the person who “loves and protects creation,” who remembers its sacred nature. We need to bring this song of love into our hearts and hands. Through our love for the Earth we can honor the call to climate action that comes from all faiths and from the single voice that is within all of humanity. We are all part of one living being we call the Earth and it desperately needs our love and attention.

Pope Francis urges people to combat climate change

Published on Jun 18, 2015

Carl Apple of the Catholic Diocese of Grand Rapids talks about Pope Francis’ recent stance on climate change. (June 18, 2015)

Living Earth Devotional 365 Green Practices for Sacred Connection By: Clea Danaan

Tune in to nature, care for the sacred earth, and grow spiritually with 365 eco-friendly activities for deepening your connection with nature. Living Earth Devotional offers practical, soul-centered tasks, including meditations, craft projects, gardening and outdoor activities, journaling prompts, and more. Following the Wheel of the Year, this day-by-day guide will help you tune in to the energies of the changing seasons and build a greater appreciation for the earth’s beauty, power, and wisdom. Reduce your carbon footprint, recharge your creativity and intuition, and cultivate a connection with the world that inspires spiritual growth and personal transformation.

Clea Danaan (Colorado) has been gardening organically for over twenty years. Her articles on ecology and spirituality have appeared in SageWoman, Witches & Pagans, GreenSpirit, and Organic Family magazines. She is the author of Sacred Land, Voices of the Earth, Living Earth Devotional, and The Way of the Hen. Her background in Reiki, expressive arts therapies, outdoor education, and somatic psychology inform her integrated and ecumenical writings. Visit her online at http://www.CleaDanaan.com.

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Earth Devotional offers practical, soul-centered tasks, including meditations, craft projects, gardening and outdoor activities, journal exercises, and more. Following the Wheel of the Year, this day-by-day guide will help you tune in to the energies of the changing seasons and build a greater appreciation for the earth’s beauty, power, and wisdom. Reduce your carbon footprint, recharge your creativity and intuition, and cultivate a connection with the earth that inspires spiritual growth and personal transformation.

Prayer for the Earth – Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee


Published on Mar 27, 2015
Recorded December 3, 2011 at the Mercy Center, Burlingame, California

Prayer is a response to a need. Our need. The Beloved’s need. And at this time, most pressingly, the need of the Earth.

From the book Prayer of the Heart: goldensufi.org/book_desc_prayer_heart.ht­ml
Category
Nonprofits & Activism

Rebirth, Miracles, and Magic ~ Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee Ph.D.

Amidst headlines of terrorists and other news of a global darkness, a quiet miracle is once again taking place. While blizzards batter the North East, spring comes here in Northern California–that magical moment when buds break open, when bulbs become shoots that become flowers, and color and fragrance return to a world made grey by winter. Trees blossom, magnolias flower purple and white. One can sense the pulse of the earth, and cannot help but feel the joy of life reawakening. Nature beckons us to be present at this moment when life begins again.

In the Christian story the moment of rebirth will come two months later, when in the miracle of the empty tomb Mary mistakes the risen Christ for a gardener, until he says those poignant words, “Woman why weepest thou?” This resurrection takes place every year at Easter, but it is not just a cyclical happening. Christ’s transformation symbolizes the mysterious moment when the eternal and temporal meet, when the Divine and human merge together. This is the transformation that can happen to each of us, when we reconnect and live the eternal dimension of our own soul, when we reawaken. Like the joy in springtime, it is always a miracle. And it is the deepest promise of being human.

The stories of the soul are all around us, how from the darkness life returns. It is simple and magical, nourishing us with the mystery of what it really means to be alive, to be awake. In today’s world dominated by the rational mind, by the apparent wonders of technology and science, we often forget this more primal wonder. We overlook our need for real magic. Without knowing it we do not welcome spring, we are not there at the empty tomb. Often as a culture we do not even recognize the lack of color in our lives, the lack of the soul’s fragrance.

And as our world spins out of balance, becoming more and more divisive, there is the danger that we will remain in the darkening world of winter without even realizing it. Caught in our culture’s dreams of materialism, we do not notice the magic we are missing. Just as we are destroying the fragile beauty of the outer world, so we are losing its inner mystery. But even if we do not feel the grief, we are all part of this global story of ecological devastation, of species that will never again be reborn in the spring, the trees whose sap will never again flow.

Where can we find the magic we need to free ourself from this self-destructive spell of consumerism, this soul-destroying pursuit of distractions? Magic is always present, just as the Divine is always present. It is there in the leaf opening, in the beating of the hummingbird’s wings. It is in the garden sparrows that everyday crowd around the bird feeder outside my window–such an ordinary miracle that I love it all the more. It is in the moment when the Divine unveils Itself and whispers or at times shouts to us. Sometimes, like for Mary, it becomes visible in our moment of grief, when the tears fall and our heart aches.

Sadly we only talk to ourselves. We no longer listen to the Earth or to life itself. As Thomas Berry says, “We have broken the great conversation.” But if we have courage and humility, if we kneel down close to the earth, we may hear how our whole world is crying, calling to those who are awake enough to hear it, strong enough to bear its grief. It is calling for us to work together, to bring the light of our own divinity, our compassion and caring, into the marketplace of life, to counter the pull of greed and exploitation.

More than any ideas of solving our problems or planning for the future, we need the power of magic–the ancient magic of the Earth, of its soul as well as its soil. And we need the miracle of love that is within our heart. Together we may be able to break this spell that is making a wasteland of our world. In cooperation with the Earth and all of its inhabitants we can weave the threads of a new story, which is also an old story. It is the most ancient story of the Earth and also the story of our own soul: the story of life regenerating itself, being born anew.

View Here on his book, ” Darkening of the Light: Witnessing the End of an Era

Earth’s Crisis: On the Edge of the Roof ~ Tara Brach


Published on Sep 18, 2014
Earth’s Crisis: On the Edge of the Roof (9/17/2014) ~ This talk views the ecological dis-ease of our planet through the lens of our evolutionary unfolding. We explore the egoic trance that has precipitated the destruction of our environment, and the inner practices of presence that enable us to respond from love and wisdom.

Ecomysticism: The Profound Experience of Nature as Spiritual Guide by Carl von Essen (Author)

Explores the philosophy, science, and spirituality of nature mysticism and its Green calling

• Offers a solid bridge between spiritual practice and environmental activism

• Reveals how we can heal the environment by renewing our connection to it

• Shows how spiritual encounters in nature are healing the Nature Deficit Disorder of our psyches and bodies

Many have been struck by a majestic moment in nature–a sole illuminated flower in a shady grove, an owl swooping silently across a wooded path, or an infinitely starry sky–and found themselves in a state of expanded awareness so profound they can feel the interconnectedness of all life. These trance-like moments of clarity, unity, and wonder often incite a call to protect and preserve the earth–to support Nature as she supports us. Termed “nature mysticism,” people from all cultures have described such experiences. However, the ever-increasing urbanization of the world’s population is threatening this ancient connection as well as the earth itself.

In Ecomysticism, Carl von Essen explores nature mysticism through the recorded experiences of outdoor enthusiasts as well as scientific studies in biology, psychology, and neuroscience. Citing consciousness scholar William James and a variety of well-known nature lovers such as Ansel Adams, Henry David Thoreau, and Ralph Waldo Emerson, von Essen shows how the spiritual transcendence from an encounter in nature–like other mystical experiences–is healing the Nature Deficit Disorder of our psyches and bodies, leading to an expansion of our worldview and a clearer understanding of our self and of our natural world. Offering a solid bridge between spiritual practice and environmental activism, von Essen’s spiritual ecology reveals how only through a renewal of humanity’s spiritual connection to nature can we effect true environmental healing.

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Carl von Essen, M.D., studied medicine in California and Sweden. He has practiced and taught in the United States, India, and Switzerland and served with the World Health Organization in Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe. The author of The Revenge of the Fishgod: Angling Adventures around the World and Memory Is a Dwelling Place, he lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The Great Unspoken Tragedy of the Present Time – Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

Excerpted from the talk ‘Spiritual Ecology’ given at the Mercy Center in Burlingame, CA on December 3, 2011.

“Ecology Is the New Theology” – Michael Dowd 2013 sermon


Published on Feb 25, 2013

“Ecology is the new theology; big history is the new Genesis,” declares Rev. Michael Dowd in a sermon urging religions to catch up with the “evidential reformation” pioneered by science.

Click timecodes to advance to topics:

00:10 – biblical scripture reading
00:53 – science scripture reading: Carl Sagan
01:20 – literature scripture reading: philosopher Loyal Rue

02:11 – core theme: “Ecology is the new theology; big history is the new genesis. Those who fail to understand that evidence is modern-day scripture, and that the world we live in is an honorable world, betray God and humanity in the most egregious of ways.”

03:21 – modern-day prophets, speaking on behalf of evidence

04:57 – God is a personification, not a person

07:14 – birth of science’s “clockwork universe” and religion’s response

09:01 – “Ecology is the new theology” for living in right relationship with reality

09:48 – the naturalizing of God, guidance, and good news

11:13 – out-of-date religion holds back response to climate change

12:35 – the “twin idolatries”: idolatry of the written word, idolatry of the otherworldly

15:59 – Michael’s un-naturalism rap: “Supernatural is unnatural is uninspiring”

18:19 – Idolatry of the otherworldly trivializes God, guidance, and good news

19:08 – “We’re not separate from nature; we are the Universe becoming conscious of itself”

20:39 – “the REAL-izing of God, guidance and good news” via science

21:12 – “scientific evidence, historic evidence, and cross-cultural evidence” = public revelation

23:42 – “Religions have been autistic for the last 500 years.”

24:29 – “We are committed to a just, healthy, and sustainably life-giving future.”

25:07 – intergenerational evil

25:22 – Climate change as fact, and action an ethical imperative

26:19 – “I believe that the baby boom generation will go down in history. . .”

26:59 – the need to internalize the costs of carbon through a carbon fee / tax

28:02 – how we approach death; the need to say “no” to costly interventions

29:21 – death, climate change, and the legacy of the baby boom generation

29:40 – Closing words: Carl Sagan, “Science is, at least in part, informed worship.”

Note: Dowd’s guest sermon was delivered 10 February 2013 at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Santa Fe, New Mexico (USA). The original, full-length sermon appears on the congregation’s Youtube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/uusantafe

The exact url for Dowd’s sermon on that channel is http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q21HM-…

The 30-minute version posted here was edited by Connie Barlow (aka ghostsofevolution).

Michael Dowd’s VIDEO and PUBLICATIONS page:
http://thegreatstory.org/MD-writings….

The Third Covenant: The Transmission of Consciousness in the Work of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Thomas Berry, and Albert J. LaChance by Albert J. LaChance (Author), Rebecca LaChance Goodwin (Author)

Pub Date July 8, 2014


The Third Covenant explores the work of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Thomas Berry, and Albert LaChance, revealing through the lens of spirituality, science, and ecology, their understanding of human origin and evolution. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, an early twentieth century geologist and priest, devoted his life as a scientist, clergyman, and mystic, to reuniting the artificial fracture between science and religion. Thomas Berry, a follower of Teilhard de Chardin and a highly respected cultural historian, furthered this reunification by repositioning the human in the unfolding of an evolving universe, integrated and interdependent with the rest of the life systems of the planet. Albert LaChance, himself a six-year, face-to-face student of Berry, brought this new paradigm into his work as a poet, psychologist, addiction recovery professional, and most importantly, as a mystic and scholar of religion. Along with his daughter, Rebecca LaChance Goodwin, LaChance explores the development of this crucial shift in human understanding and its implications for the future.

Parts I and II explore the elements of polarized thinking that makes us believe that we are separate from each other and the life systems of the planet. Thomas Berry’s list of twelve principles for understanding the universe and the role of the human in the universe process describes the creative unfolding of our place in the universe. Part III introduces practical steps for achieving personal, familial, and cultural change. LaChance outlines his Twelve Steps of Ecological Spirituality to help us move from powerlessness and isolation to a state of reawakening to self, to humanity, to all species, to the planet, and to the universe.

About the Author
The author of several books on spirituality, psychology, ecology, and religion, ALBERT J. LACHANCE, PhD, spent six years in a one-on-one relationship with Thomas Berry at his Riverdale Center for Religious Research. For seventeen years he owned and operated Greenspirit: The Center for Counseling and Consciousness in Manchester, New Hampshire. He has counseled individuals, families, and groups, and has consulted with organizations regarding interpersonal dynamics.

A graduate of Harvard Divinity School with a Master’s Degree in theological studies, REBECCA LACHANCE GOODWIN has taught and lectured on comparative religions at the high school and college levels. She has worked with Dr. LaChance for six years as a student of his work and as an editor and coauthor. She contributed the foreword to his most recent book The Way of Christ. The author lives in New Boston, New Hampshire.

Click here to browse inside.

Happiness Is Green-Colored: Why Is There Such a Strong Association Between Gardening and Well-being?

Imagine you realize that you’re not as happy as you should be in your life, and decide you need to take some steps to enhance your level of well-being. There are a number of new activities and practices you could take up: meditation, dancing, singing, running, consciously performing acts of kindness, religious worship, and so on. Research has shown that all of these activities can increase well-being. But one of the most effective things you could do, according to research, is to take up gardening.

Let me say first of all that I am not a gardener myself. I’ve always associated gardening with hard work. Apart from regularly mowing my lawn (which I do actually enjoy) I have never devoted much time to the activity. But I’m beginning to think that I should start.

Research published last year in the UK found that 80% of gardeners feel satisfied with their lives, compared to an average of 67%. The survey also found that the gardeners who devoted most time to the activity were the happiest. Those who spent more than 6 hours a week gardening had a 7% higher level of well-being than those who gardened less. 93% of gardeners also believed that the activity improved their mood. (1)

These results are similar to an earlier US study of 600 gardeners, which found that those who gardened for five hours or more per week were significantly happier than normal. This study found that the activity had pronounced physical benefits too: on average, the 600 gardeners had significantly better overall health, with fewer chronic health problems and longer life spans.

As a result of findings such as these – and a burgeoning interest in the field of ‘ecotherapy’ in general – in the UK, gardening has begun to be used as a therapy for individuals suffering from depression and anxiety. As an alternative to prescribing anti-depressants, doctors in a pilot study are signing patients up for 12 week gardening courses. The ‘Grozone’ project teaches patients basic horticultural skills and encourages them to grow their own plants, which they can take home afterwards. As well as the act of gardening itself, the belief is that the outdoor exercise and social contact will also be beneficial to patients. (2)

Why does gardening have such a positive effect on well-being?

I would suggest a number of reasons why gardening can have such a positive effect. These reflect the fact that, although it superficially seems a very simple activity, there are a number of different aspects of gardening.

First of all, it is well established now that contact with nature in general has a powerful therapeutic effect (hence the term ‘ecotherapy’).Research has shown that a daily through a park or the countryside improves the symptoms of people suffering from depression and schizophrenia. Contact with nature improves children’s concentration and well-being too. Gardening can obviously be seen as a form of ecotherapy.

This begs the question of why ecotherapy is effective. I believe that part of the reason is that human beings – and all our evolutionary forebears – have been closely bonded with nature for almost all our existence. It’s only in recent times that many of us have been confined to man-made environments. For us, contact with green spaces is therefore like going back home, and fills us with the same sense of safety and belonging. Gardening strongly relates to this, because it is such an ancient pastime. Human beings have been tending and farming the soil for 10,000 years, and even before then, the hunter-gatherer lifestyle our ancestors led involved constant contact with vegetation (especially for the female gatherers). The symbiotic relationship with nature which gardening entails is instinctive to us, a powerful part of our human heritage.

Flow and Mindfulness

Another major reason why gardening can have such a positive effect is that it is an effective way of producing the psychological state of ‘flow’ – the state of active absorption in which we lose our awareness of ourselves and of time. As Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s research has shown, in flow the normal restless (and often negative) chattering of our mind fades away, and we feel alert and alive, as if our mental energy has become more intensified.

At the same time – or at other times – gardening can induce a state of mindfulness. Flow and mindfulness are similar states, but the main difference between them is that in flow our attention is mono-focused, narrowed down to one particular object or area, and closed off to what is outside of that area. In mindfulness, however, our attention is open and panoramic, alert to the whole field of awareness. Mindfulness means living in the present, free from the anxieties of the future, and being open to the beauty and wonder of the world. Over an hour or two of work, a gardener probably switches regularly from flow to mindfulness and back again – as well as, perhaps, to some intermediate states.

Gardening provides a sense of accomplishment too – you can see the tangible results of your activity, even if they may take weeks or months to unfold. Gardening involves physical activity, and nurturing too – both of which are also known to enhance well-being.

And one of the best things about gardening is that it’s free. (In fact, other people might even pay you for doing it.) The pioneer positive psychologist Michael Fordyce observed that most of the experiences which bring us well-being involve very little expense and very little planning or organisation. And gardening is one of the best examples of this. Why spend thousands of pounds or dollars on material goods whose positive effect quickly fades, when you can just throw on some old clothes and step into your garden? And as psychologists and medical professionals are beginning to realise: why spend millions of pounds on psychiatric drugs when short periods of contact with nature are just as – or perhaps even more – effective than them?

And now I’m off to the hardware store to buy some tools….

~ Steve Taylor, Ph.D. is a senior lecturer in psychology at Leeds Metropolitan University, UK. He is the author of Back to Sanity View Here

http://www.stevenmtaylor.com

Notes:

(1) http://www.gardenersworld.com/downloads/PDFs/happiness-survey-res…

(2) http://www.valeroyalccg.nhs.uk/news_items/7303-grozone-project-ai…

1.Seeds Of Love 2. A March against Monsanto is a March for Life and Freedom ~ Dr.Vandana Shiva


Published on Dec 18, 2013

At a time where mega corporations want to control our food, it is imperative that we stand together to protect our food, the planet and each other.

in this earth
in this earth
in this immaculate field
we shall not plant any seeds
except for compassion
except for love

-Rumi

A March against Monsanto is a March for Life and Freedom – 25th May 2013

Darkening: A Four-Point Plan by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

One of the first responses I received to my recently published book, Darkening of the Light: Witnessing the End of an Era, view here was that it was “a tough read,” and “I wish he would have been clearer as to what steps we can do in our complex lives to try the best we can to return the soul of the world to its former strength and beauty.” Normally I am reluctant to tell people what to do, as we each have our own inner wisdom, our own guidance and way to reconnect with the soul of the world. But this request struck a chord and in a moment of inspiration I came up with a “Four-Point Plan” to respond to this darkening. read more

Including the Earth in Our Prayers by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

Every morning I love to walk early beside the wetlands where I live. It is a time of natural reflection and prayer, a time to be alone with nature and the divine that is present: in the hawk sitting on the telephone lines, the skyline softening and turning golden. And now, as we move towards the winter solstice, the first light comes later, and the darkness seems more potent. In this natural time of darkening my prayer instinctively deepens, as if in response to the loss of light. I sense the energy withdrawing into the earth, and today, the first hard frost, white and brittle, drew me even more towards an inner light.

In my prayer I wonder how it is for the Earth itself, at this time of another darkening, when our materialistic consumer culture depletes so much of the land. We have all heard the news of climate change, pollution, and species extinction. We have seen the pictures of smog-filled streets and clear-cut forests. But how do we sense this in our hearts? Do we dare to acknowledge and feel the wasteland we have created? Do we feel the grief of a world that is dying through our greed and desires? Do we pray for the Earth as we would a sick friend, a cancer sufferer, a dying partner?

More and more we are being reminded that we are not separate from the Earth and its ecosystem—we are all living together, dependent upon each other and our shared environment. As Thich Nhat Hanh writes: “We will survive and thrive together with our Mother Earth or we will not survive at all.”

We are a part of the Earth and it is through her great generosity that we are nurtured and nourished, eating her food, drinking her waters, clothed in her fabric. Even as we deplete her, she continues to give and give. Her generosity is a lesson for us all. Each morning on my walk I pass a gnarled old apple tree. I watch her boughs become heavy with fruit, slowly reddening as late summer turns to fall. I marvel at how she gives with such abundance without wanting anything in return. Now, in this “season of giving,” if we can remember the constant stream of gifts we receive from her, and be appreciative in our hearts.

As I get older I feel the Earth’s endless generosity more and more, as if I treasure each season in the year and its different offerings, its changing fruits. I know more clearly how I would not be here without this giving. At the same time my heart hurts for the Earth, grieves at the way our culture treats her wonder and gifts, her magic and sacred meaning. And the question arises from my depths, in a culture of seeming abundance how have we lost so much?

So during this natural season of darkening my heart responds to an unnatural darkening. My prayers turn towards a sacred world we seem to have forgotten. This prayer sometimes feels as if the Earth itself were crying through me, imploring us to remember it at this time of need. Maybe in this darkening something can be born, a new way of being that respects all of life, that sustains the whole of creation. Maybe once again we can remember our love for the Earth, our reverence for what is sacred within all of creation, and honor all of its inhabitants. Then our hearts can open and sense the divine that is all around us—our prayers turn into praise. Once again we can live in an ensouled world that nourishes us everyday with sacred meaning.

We are part of a magical, beautiful, and suffering Earth, whose darkening we have created with our endless exploitation. The Earth, which is so infinitely generous, needs our prayers, needs our loving, our open hearts and remembrance. Each morning as I walk in the first light I feel this need, and the response that comes from the depths of my soul: in this time of winter solstice may we include the Earth in our prayers.
We Are Part of a Living Whole – Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

An awareness of the inner worlds is an essential part of our human heritage—those worlds that are invisible to our physical sight, but exist in other dimensions of reality. However, this awareness has been censored by rational consciousness and our present culture. This talk explores our need to reclaim our connection to these realities, to return to the greater wholeness to which we belong.

The Relationship Between the Inner & Outer Worlds – Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

Darkening of the Light: Witnessing the End of an Era by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

A compelling insight into the impact that external, ecological damage has on the inner self, this spiritual exploration argues that although spiritual teachings reveal that events in the outer world are a reflection of changes taking place in the inner world, there is little awareness and discussion of how this outer darkening is reflected within.

The book tells the story of changes that have been taking place in the inner worlds that belong to a collective spiritual destiny and the fate of the planet, changes that are as significant as the ecological devastation even as they are unreported and unacknowledged. It asserts that destruction of the surrounding world, as it continues, is reflected in the inner worlds of all people through a loss of sacred light, and the threat of a soulless wasteland looms large. The book seeks to address readers’ futures as individuals and as a whole, and to inspire people to take responsibility for the earth and reclaim humanity’s sacred role as its guardians.

Click here to browse inside.

Darkening of the Light Book Trailer with Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

“Darkening of the Light: Witnessing the End of an Era,” a new book by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, is a witness to the loss of the light of the sacred reflected in our continued destruction and desecration of life’s fragile ecosystem. This story of our collective destiny, however painful, needs to be heard if we are to take responsibility for the Earth and reclaim our sacred role as guardians of the planet.

Listen HERE Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee Interview with Werner Brandt of the Work that Reconnect in which they discuss the importance of witnessing the ecological crisis of our time, so we might feel and honor our pain for Anima Mundi, the soul of the world, and how we might respond with love and courage.

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