March 24, 2013 § Leave a Comment
. . . Eric whitacre does it again – this time all live
eric’s soaring sequences set to octavio’s earth-sensual lyrics
( as if human techy had no place here on nature’s soils ! )
filmed @ TED, march 2013, 13-min
December 12, 2012 § 1 Comment
This moving invitation to all the Americas -south, central, north- from the indigenous kogi people of colombia’s sierra nevada de santa marta, on this special calendar date of 12/12/12.
( gift from amparo -my special gang-of-six colombian friend, i pass along this special invitation to you, dear blog reader, as my own pagamento in our mirroring internet firmament )
We Mamos ( shamans ) of the Kogi people invite you to sow Anugwe with us in Mother Earth (Seynekan), and deeply in our very selves too. It is our pagamento ( offering ) to her.
Anugwe cannot be maintained if it is not accompanied by commensurate behavior on our part. The spirituality that reigns in our Mother impregnates us and is tinged in turn by our own actions.
Plants or animals are not the ones that distort that spirituality, because they follow her naturally. We can too through our coherence, our unconditional love, our adherence to the word, our intentions, and our attitudes. When we sow the Anugwe in Mother Earth we harmonize with her, express our inner love -the unconditional one, the one that respects her laws of nature.
We align mind, soul, and inner self. We take an amethyst stone in one hand and an ambar stone in the other. We invoke Arwaviku, Father of Intuition; I’narwa, Father of Food; Sokakurwa, Father of Plants & Animals; and Geinigeka, Father of Energy and Spiritual Strength -present altogether in Kankurwa, our cosmic universal temple.
We ask these spiritual masters to cleanse and harmonize the energies of Mother Earth in the four directions, the four colors, the four elements, and the four essences of being- physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual.
We invite you to follow this our Mamos ritual with us. Or prepare your own pagamento for Mother Earth using fruits, seeds, flowers, and / or personal belongings of your own choosing. During your meditation, keep that pagamento close. After the ceremony, sow it in the ground -your very own Anugwe- where it can remind you of the presence of Mother Earth- her harmony and her unconditional love.
watch BBC’s 1990 one-&-a-half hour from the heart of the world – the elder brothers warning, a deeply meditative consideration of kogi earth-wisdom.
watch the three-&-a-half minute preview of ALUNA, BBC’s updated 2012 production of the kogi lost civilization and their message to us, their ” younger brothers “.
Now we find ourselves in a period of the greatest disturbance that the Earth has ever known, a period when survival of both the human and natural worlds in their present modes of being is threatened. The identification of our human fate with the destiny of the planet was never more clear. . … Now a new sequence of liturgical celebrations is needed. Even more than moments of seasonal renewal, these moments of cosmic transformation must be considered sacred. … First among these celebrations might be a celebration of the emergent moment of the universe itself. This was the beginning of religion just as it was the beginning of the world. The human mind and all its spiritual capacities began with this moment. ( ipad kindle loc 1477/2110 in thomas berry’s THE SACRED UNIVERSE: EARTH, SPIRITUALITY, AND RELIGION IN THE TWENTY FIRST CENTURY )
December 7, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Terrific narrated filmed reviews of where we’re coming from, where we need to be going. check each out in order on TRANSITION CULTURE’S UK SITE: 6 abbrev trailers, 2 5-6 min trailers, a 35-min animated film, and yet one more fine BBC documentary on living with Mother ( 50-min ).
but first, promised word on-topic from favorite commentator THOMAS BERRY
The story of the Western world is the story of how the peoples whose culture took shape through the religious inspiration of the Hebrew Bible, the New Testament, the humanism of the Greek world, the political-legal genius of the Romans, and a brilliant medieval period became so entranced with a secular, scientific, industrial civilization serving limited human needs that it was willing to devastate the entire planet for the immediate benefits received ( by the few ). Their assault upon the Earth has been so violent in modern times, both to its geological structures and its living species, that we ( now ) face a tremendous crisis . . . This new situation is so inherent in cultural structures that it seems to be the inevitable consequence of ( those very ) religious, political, educational, ethical, and economic establishments of Western peoples. ( ipad kindle loc 1686/2110 of thomas berry’s THE SACRED UNIVERSE: EARTH, SPIRITUALITY, AND RELIGION IN THE TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY )
here’s rob hopkins’ own review of his transition network’s chosen top ten films.
click on embedded trailers & films directly @ TRANSITION CULTURE’S SITE
here is my own favorite, their #2 selection, naturalist filmmaker / farmer rebecca hosking’s deeply honest, probe into her own farm of the future.
November 25, 2012 § 2 Comments
SACRED UNIVERSE shows the way like none other i’ve read
this is hard
yes of course, she moves me
beautiful shots of mother -the colors,
textures, sweep who can ignore
then those places loosely heard tell
someone now describing in moving detail
places where ma most hurts -those melting poles
there’s been undeniable science
pointing to horrendous overstepping
facts hard-&-fast, the evidence ever mounting
so much of all of that
to blog about here
to take in, digest
even breakthrough guides
like brave go-it-aloner james lovelock
father of holy cow, she’s alive!
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
and then there’s thomas berry
1st thought: my god!
how come so long to hear this prophet?
talk about she moves me!
does mother ever move him!
words rung clear as chiming matins
THE SACRED UNIVERSE to be sure, but
not just religion any more
not even earth by herself
let’s start with alienation
ok, one hellofa way to start
but clearly the one we chose
here in the west straight from day one
say, so-called enlightenment day. and on those heels
industrial revolution: enslavement days
thence our god, our land
even our constitution, our very one-another
look around to see -what’s left??
but berry doesn’t leave us there
takes us back to places deep-known
a great looking back w/o going back!
no way i can summarize this work for you
so here on out, in blog posts to come
rattling-pillar quotes -as they have my own
meantime please, if you haven’t already, and
if still hobbling on this trek with me
do pick up thomas berry and see for yourself
insights original, work that glows
sure to change your life on earth
can’t now imagine other way to get going . . . !
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The future must be felt as already present. Humans cannot long sustain ecstatic bliss that is the culmination of all great cultural traditions. If this is not granted in the immediacy of the present in its legitimate reality then we will seek illusory fulfillment in whatever ways are available to us. We must live in paradise not tomorrow but today.
. . . The primordial symbolism and the spiritual disciplines of the ancient traditions were not ephemeral productions of passing human fancy. They are tough and enduring realities capable of carrying the weight of the centuries and the larger hopes and destinies of humankind. They are more real and more needed today than ever before if human life is to have the serenity and vigor required to move the peoples and civilizations of the world into deeper integration with earth processes.
( loc 575-579/2110 on my ipad kindle )
What is needed is a new pattern of rapport with the planet. Here we come to the critical transformation needed in the emotional, aesthetic, spiritual, and religious orders of life. Only a change that profound in human consciousness can remedy the deep cultural pathology manifest in such destructive behavior.
. . . The poets and artists can help restore this sense of rapport with the natural world. It is this renewed energy of reciprocity with nature in all its complexity and remarkable beauty that can help provide the psychic and spiritual energies necessary for the work ahead.
( loc 634-637/2110 )
November 3, 2012 § 1 Comment
Four must-read articles on overdue wake-up politics
along with evidence of sandy-climate change connect . . .
* * *
coming soon . . .
a look at three books i couldn’t put down
June 7, 2012 § 1 Comment
( What could we add ? . . . )
( except be sure to watch full-screen )
May 24, 2012 § Leave a Comment
HOME: has to be the definitive statement on global warming. thank you YANN ARTHUS-BERTRAND & team. and thanks julia mader of RASAYANA COVE our unique healing ashram here in florida who finally just brought the placid-shattering documentary to my attention during a recent retreat.
after watching this preview click HERE to to take in the full 1.5-hour extravaganza. if you’re like me, it’ll take you more than a single sitting to take it all in. i advise you give it all the time it’s asking. and need i add, it’s best @ full-resolution, full-screen, and turn up those ancillary speakers!
going on 3 yrs now since its release; where’ve i been??
devastating, of course, but doesn’t just leave you there; simply too late to be a pessimist! as they put it. music – aerials – narration – silences all of highest caliber and orchestration together, nothing less than what our miraculous, embattled mother planet deserves. ties in everything you’ve already heard about our number one global crisis- and then some! talk about moved by mother!
the film appeared on june 5, 2009, world environment day, the first film ever to be released simultaneously in theaters – on tv – dvd – internet, free in 5 continents and 14 languages, the director giving up all copyright rights. YOU’LL WANT TO READ THE FILM’S WIKIPEDIA ENTRY
April 22, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Here reviewed by scot thill of alternet 4/19/12 . . .
Co-executive produced by Martin Scorsese and co-directed by Mathieu Roy and Harold Crooks, this meditative documentary examines humanity’s currently crucial crossroads between self-wrought runaway consumption, rapacious economics and natural resource exhaustion through the prism of so-called technological progress. Anchored in author Ronald Wright’s 2004 Massey Lectures series A Short History of Progress and fleshed out by theoretical physicist cyborg Stephen Hawking, dystopian sci-fi author Margaret Atwood, famed primatologist Jane Goodall and others, the visually impressive Surviving Progress analyzes what it will take to dodge a global collapse that is priced into the future thanks to short-sighted past and present mistakes.
It’s a poetic analysis, with a spare score that cedes ground to its visionary subjects, and their destabilizing subject matter. But it’s also an optimistic exploration, holding out hope that humanity’s exponential technological development can discover solutions to stave off what Hawking calls the next two centuries of natural and social disasters we’ll have to negotiate to survive as a species. Some answers come from Craig Venter’s Synthetic Genomics, which is scouring the planet’s oceans for microbes whose genes can help us “write software for life.” Others can be found in the internet, which Surviving Progress posits as our interconnected planetary brain. If you’re looking for a fiery polemic, Surviving Progress, opening in April, is not the film for you. But if you’re looking for a sweeping think piece, welcome to the machine.
the island president
Earlier this February, Mohammed Nasheed — the Mandela of the Maldives, who like his forebear has spent much of his life being tortured in prison — was allegedly forced from his presidency by gunpoint. A month later, The Island President, a documentary exploring Nasheed’s campaign to reverse climate change in order to save the low-lying Maldives from being swallowed by inevitable sea rise, finally debuted in a United States that probably couldn’t even locate his country on a Google map. Even so, The Island President’s award-winning political and environmental intrigue still managed to capture the consciences of its viewers, critics and even his own country.
Although director Jon Shenk’s documentary takes place in a remote corner of climate change’s evolving dystopia, it remains a cautionary tale for any nation that thinks its elections are clean and its political and economic priorities are being properly addressed and administered. And the show goes on with Nasheed’s one-time ally, vice-president and Stanford graduate Mohammed Hassan — whose own brother fingered him for helping oust Nasheed in a coup — now sweating uncomfortably in global warming’s hot seat. He’ll soon be joined by politicians at the center of power webs in places Americans do know, like Miami, New York and others subject to the ravages of sea rise.
After bidding on 14 parcels of pristine Utah public land near national parks and landmarks during a Bureau of Land Management oil and gas lease auction, Tim DeChristopher was taken into custody by federal agents and sentenced to two years in prison by judge Dee Benson, a controversial George H.W. Bush appointee.
Award-wininng director team Beth and George Gage’s Bidder 70 tells the compelling, infuriating tale of DeChristopher’s conscientious civil disobedience, and the ludicrous legal ruling that has kept him behind bars for longer than anyone involved in the Deepwater Horizon spill or the global economic recession, tragedies much more deserving of judicial overreach. Despite the fact that his brilliant stunt allowed the incoming Obama administration to invalidate the auction altogether in lieu of adequate environmental review, the uncompromising DeChristopher is still unfairly incarcerated, awaiting his moment of triumphant redemption. One fervently hopes that Bidder 70 brings that moment much closer than his scheduled release date of April 21, 2013, which is perhaps not accidentally a day shy of Earth Day.
( no trailer; linked movie site viewed separately )
You’ll have a hard time finding the sobering Chasing Ice in the malls, as it’s still on the competitive documentary circuit. But one thing is for sure: There’ll be even less ice to find when director Jeff Orlowski’s documentary about climate change and vanishing glaciers finds foreign and domestic theatrical distribution later this year. Chasing Ice is produced by the team that brought you the dolphin horror documentary The Cove, and it’s just as arresting, as it follows acclaimed National Geographic photographer James Balog to the Arctic in search of something that won’t melt away before our eyes.
Balog’s project to photograph the region’s warming climate is not called the Extreme Ice Survey for nothing. For the last five years, it has mounted 30 time-lapse cameras across three continents to chronicle the jaw-dropping loss of Arctic sea ice, drawing a sharp, immediate focus on the ramifications of that nearly unprecedented warming. The EIS has published these results in National Geographic, but the still photographs are nothing compared to the existential terror and environmental beauty of Chasing Ice, one of 2012′s most important documentaries. Watch it by any means necessary.
( linked trailer viewed separately )
Chasing Ice may be a more wide-ranging documentary analysis of the entire Arctic region, but it is To the Arctic’s tale of a mother polar bear and her twin cubs that is getting the 70mm IMAX treatment this April. It’s also boasting narration from Meryl Streep, as well as songs from Paul McCartney, in case you were looking for further pop crossovers. But this is not to say that To the Arctic is a lightweight crowd-pleaser.
Directed by outdoor IMAX filmmaker Greg MacGillivray, To the Arctic is an eye-popping exploration that hangs its environmental message on three live animal leads, hoping their modest story of solitary survival can teach us all a lesson about living in an interdependent system at the mercy of the natural world’s disruptively real-time changes. That it does so in stunning visual fashion doesn’t derail that message, so much as couch it in an empathy perhaps more suitable to a much less cynical era. But if every parent in the world took their kids to see To the Arctic instead of The Lorax, the world might be in a lot less of a mess.
( linked trailer viewed separately )
Being extraordinarily large nomads who like to graze on open land, bison stick out of our light-speed 21st-century technopolis like sore reminders of times long past. For this reason and others, we haven’t been able to stop killing them. Or worse, privileging the unsustainable factory-farming of cattle, consumption of which drastically raises our chances of illness and death, all while hypocritically crying about the tragic loss of the West in the process. This April, Public Broadcasting System’s Independent Lens series airs High Plains Films’ Facing the Storm: Story of the American Bison as a timely remainder of this historically problematic human-animal relationship.
It’s an intricate analysis, brought to life by archival imagery, original animation and wildlife photography that will hopefully compel its viewers to get out of their cubicles into open spaces where existence takes on more dimensional meaning. Facing the Storm also examines not just the ages-old battle between cattle ranchers and Native Americans and like-minded conservationists, but also suspicious domestication strategies designed to strip bison of their nomadic instincts altogether, so that we may better contain and eat them.
October 8, 2011 § Leave a Comment
Forgive me, dear reader
too long since my last um . . . entry
( yes, again! )
well, this morning there is something i need to add
adele & i have this practice of sharing readings first thing
bit like church right in our living room
can’t tell you how often she finds something that hits home
tells me how she’s earmarking it for the book she’s writing
have to say this morning laugh’s on me
my turn down the mine shaft
anyway, too good not to share with you
while waiting to find the right moment
to tell you about paul gilding’s book just finished
this morning, picked up an old friend
CHOP WOOD – CARRY WATER
fell open to chapter twelve
much to carry me through this rainy day
here’s an excerpt . . .
According to an old Jewish folktale, one day a child, Honi, saw an old man digging a hole in the earth. Honi asked the man, “Must you do heavy work at your age? Have you no sons to help you?” The man kept digging. “This work I must do by myself.” Honi asked, “How old are you?” “I am seventy years and seven,” answered the man. “And what are you planting?” “I am planting a breadfruit tree,” was the answer, “and the fruit of this tree can be made into bread.” “And when will your tree bear fruit?” asked Honi. “In seventeen years and seven.” “But you surely will not live that long,” said Honi. “Yes,” said the old man, “I will not live that long, but I must plant this tree. When I came into this world there were trees here for me. It is my duty to make sure that when I leave there will be trees here also.”
At its base ecological awareness is spiritual; it is a return to the simple, profound respect for and responsibility to the earth that our ancestors knew and practiced. Ecological philosophy, like spiritual philosophy, teaches that we are all one, all united. No matter how deeply we look into the fabric of material being -the biological level, chemical level, subatomic level- we see that life forms are interdependent, co-conditioning and co-evolving. Every human effort, civilization, thought, and spiritual insight, requires and is supported by the whole of organic life.
“Pantanjali, Buddha, Moses, and Jesus did not go to workshops or seminars or even churches,” says Dolores LaChappelle, author of EARTH WISDOM. “They went directly to nature: sat under a Bodhi tree or on top of a mountain or in a cave. We’ve been living off the residual remains of their inspiration for thousands of years, but this has about run out. It is time to return to the source of this inspiration -the earth itself.”
The first step toward rediscovering this spiritual fountainhead is simple: go out and observe the natural world (yourself). We need simply to look very closely. In this way the earth teaches us its eternal message, quietly, in a way unlike the textbook learning about nature.
As Robert Hunter says in O SEASONS, O CASTLES: “In nature, there is no such thing as a clash of colors. The more carefully you look, the deeper the subtleties of harmony. It is not so much that things flow into each other or around each other like perfect jigsaw pieces; rather it is that there is only One Thing out there. And, somehow, it is not really ‘out there’. Somehow, it is ‘in here’ too. Inside. At the furthest wavelength of thought, the sea and the wind and the trees and sand are … me. It is a thought that blinks into the mind, like a giant laughing eye, and then is gone for a long, long time.” . . .
One of the most stirring and beautiful ideas to have emerged in our time -the Gaia Hypothesis, described as a “wedding of the traditional intuitive wisdom to contemporary scientific insight”- was first put forward by James E. Lovelock in 1975, in the book GAIA, A NEW LOOK AT LIFE ON EARTH. Lovelock rejects the popular notion of the planet we live on as an inert lump of rock. Instead, he suggests that “the entire range of living matter on Earth, from whales to bacteria and from oaks to algae, could be regarded as constituting a single living entity … endowed with faculties and powers far beyond those of its constituent parts.”
In other words, the world is a giant living creature that sustains us in the way a body sustains bacteria. Lovelock gives this theoretical super-being the name Gaia ( pronounced like “maya” ), which is the name the ancient Greeks gave to the goddess Mother Earth.
Interestingly, we have a distinguished scientist telling us in the last half of the twentieth century that the ancient Greeks were right after all. The native Indians, too.
Lovelock used the techniques of gas chromotography to measure and compare the atmospheres of Mars and Earth, and made the startling discovery that while Mars had been dead for millions of years, something had been manipulating Earth’s atmosphere during all that time, maintaining a perfect temperature for life to thrive.
“This led us,” Lovelock writes, “to the formation of the proposition that living matter, the air, the oceans, the land surface, were parts of a giant system which was able to control temperature, the composition of the air and sea, the pH of the soil, and so on as to be optimum for survival of the biosphere.”
Lovelock carries his idea one step further. He suggests that the human race, collected together as a species, is Gaia’s emerging nervous system and brain. We are the planet becoming aware of itself, awakening to some kind of incredible consciousness, greater than anything any individual human could ever hope to know.
Something of this special feeling that one, indeed, is probably part of an entity like Gaia ( at the very least ) is expressed by another scientist, John A. Livingston, in his 1953 study of humanity’s fancied separation from non-human nature, titled ONE COSMIC INSTANT, A NATURAL HISTORY OF HUMAN ARROGANCE:
“Though I do not expect that I shall be reborn directly as a crocus, I know that one day my atoms will inhabit a bacterium here, a diatom there, a nematode or a flagellate -even a crayfish or a sea cucumber. I will be here, in myriad forms, for as long as there are forms of life on Earth. I have always been here, and with a certain effort of will, I can sometimes remember.“
In his 1979 attempt to express the awareness that had evolved in the previous decade, Theordore Roszak, the historian, published a book titled PERSON/PLANET in which he stated:
“The needs of the planet are the needs of the person. And, therefore, the rights of the person are the rights of the planet. If a proper reverence for the sanctity of the Earth and the diversity of its people is the secret of peace and survival, then the adventure of self-discovery stands before us as the most practical of pleasures.”