“We are in the midst of a global crisis of perspective. We have forgotten the undeniable truth that every living thing is connected. PLANETARY is a provocative and breathtaking wakeup call – a cross continental, cinematic journey, that explores our cosmic origins and our future as a species. It is a poetic and humbling reminder that now is the time to shift our perspective. PLANETARY asks us to rethink who we really are, to reconsider our relationship with ourselves, each other and the world around us – to remember that we are PLANETARY.”
I am pleased to tell you about an opportunity to come together this week. Wednesday, September 21 is the International Day of Peace. At Golden West College, please join us for a vegan, zero waste, bring-your-own PICNIC FOR PEACE: An Evening Screening of Planetary (RSVP & trailer).
GWC is also hosting day time events and we will be tabling there from 11:00am to 1:00pm on Wednesday. For more details, see Upcoming Events at the bottom of this email.
For those of you who came to Bringing Clean Energy to Orange County, a conversation with Nicole Capretz, you know how great her talks were. Here is the follow up. Come join us in discussing next steps at the Orange County for Climate Action meeting tomorrow night, Tuesday, September 20. We are meeting one night sooner than typical in order to participate in GWC Intl Day of Peace on Wednesday. Details are below. Continue reading
While an environmental crisis threatens the very survival of our species, a renewed connection with nature holds the key to an advanced new era in human evolution.
— Ellen White
A couple of years ago, Scientific American published an article entitled, Why We Are Wired to Connect. It is definitely worth reading in its entirety.
Evolution has placed a bet that the best thing for our brain to do in any spare moment is to get ready to see the world socially. I think that makes a major statement about the extent to which we are built to be social creatures.
And yet, so often we are living lives of disconnection. Disconnected from our self, other animals, (human and non-human) and this earth, the vast living organism that some call Gaia.
Are we actually betting against evolution, and as a result now find ourselves living within the Sixth Mass Extinction? How did we get so far off track, conditioned to accept the status quo while being endoctrinated to squelch awe and wonder? When did we forget how to love and live from compassion for all? How can we restore a sense of aliveness, living more harmoniously and resonating deeply within our most genuine, interconnected, natural state? What does the evolutionary path leading to wisdom really look like?
Let’s have this conversation. And honestly, we really need YOU to be part of it. Please come join us this coming Sunday, June 26, 6:30p for A Screening of Love Thy Nature (RSVP here).
Thanks for staying engaged,
Barbara English, LMFT, CBT, TRE® Certification Trainer
Co-founder and Executive Director, Living Ubuntu
[Ubuntu] n. Every human being truly becomes a human by means of relationships with other human being
To make this world different we have to realize that the self is plural, it’s an absolute delusion that’s killing the planet to think that the self is separate.
— Daniel Siegel, M.D.
How would we as humans innately be different if we fully embodied the truth that we are part of the whole?
In thinking about this I re-watched two brief video clips of Dr. Daniel Siegel speaking about how, “…living the lie that the self is separate is a form of impaired integration…” (video) – and how — “…the self is a plural verb, not a singular noun…” (video).
It reminded me of this:
A person with ubuntu is open and available to others, affirming of others, does not feel threatened that others are able and good, for he or she has a proper self-assurance that comes from knowing that he or she belongs in a greater whole and is diminished when others are humiliated or diminished, when others are tortured or oppressed.
— Desmond Tutu
Beyond living the lie that the self is separate, perhaps it is our impaired integration that has additionally limited us to thinking of the greater whole as strictly human. I would suggest that the phrase diminished when others are humiliated or diminished, when others are tortured or oppressed, is equally applicable to all sentient beings, regardless of species. Additionally, we are sustained and kept alive only by living harmoniously and interdependently within biodiversity.
This understanding of the self-regulating nature of earth, we didn’t know about this for 400 years in science, we just didn’t. But now we’re realizing we are destroying billions of years of creativity that enabled all of this vitality to exist. But we’re awakening to that mistake and now we see, instead of thinking of earth as something to exploit and use, we are beginning to realize, it is a community that we are to join and enhance. That’s the big shift.
— Brian Swimme, Ph.D. (Love Thy Nature)
Come join us for A Screening of Love Thy Nature (RSVP) on Sunday, June 26, 6p at Golden West College in Huntington Beach. This is a wonderfully made, beautiful documentary. After the film we will explore connection and disconnection in its many forms, the relationship we experience within our self and with others, including those of other species and the broader natural world we live within and as part of. Let’s find a way together to join and enhance this community, also known as Earth. Let’s fully participate in enacting the big shift. Continue reading
There is a short list of people that I have personally met that have dramatically changed the way I see the world and the path I choose to walk in this life. One of those I speak of often is the international trauma expert, Dr. David Berceli. Back in 2004, it resonated deeply when I first heard him speak of trauma as our invitation to evolve as a species with its resolution supporting our growth toward wisdom.
When we do not feel safe, we contract, resulting in increased fear, competition, resentment, reactivity, and anger. When safety is sufficient to allow for trauma recovery and great self-reflection on life’s hardships, we do not go back to the way we used to be, we go forward, forever changed for the better by our experiences. In the best case scenario, our sense of empathy and compassion expand as part of a much bigger, broader worldview. We move from the tightly contracted limitations of a self-centered worldview of “me” into the species-preserving benevolence of pursuing the common good in a worldview of “we”.
In 2015, I had the extremely good fortune to meet yet one more of these rare individuals who have met with significant adversity, and come out on the other side with increased wisdom and compassion. That individual is Gene Baur, the Co-founder and President of Farm Sanctuary. Bearing witness to animal cruelty for three decades would cause many to get utterly stuck in cynicism and bitterness, yet, Gene has managed to remain inspirationally optimistic, while embodying groundedness. After 30 years, he carries an amazing amount of knowledge; beyond that, he carries his life experience with grace. His organization seeks “Compassion for All” and gently reminds us that animals are “Someone not Something”.
Wisdom figures are hard to come by in this world. For me, that fosters a profound sense of gratitude when I meet one. Continue reading
Dr. David Berceli teaching TRE in China.
This era of human history is witnessing tremendous trauma on a global scale. It seems impossible to try and stop such tragedy despite our greatest desires to do so. In light of this unstoppable, irreversible and seemingly self-destructive era of our humanity, we need to ask: What possible good can come of all this violence? Once again, if we view trauma as a part of life, we must consider the possibility that the large scale trauma that we are experiencing has the potential of helping us evolve into a more ethical, moral and caring species. This global trauma can be viewed as the pain of the human species going through the birthing canal to be born into a new era of human consciousness.
– David Berceli
I know asking you to think about January right now might be a bit much – yet – the early registration deadline for Toward a More Peaceful World is this coming Friday, December 19 and I don’t want you to miss out on it.
If you are on the fence about attending, here are some really good benefits to consider:
• Participating in Tension and Trauma Releasing Exercises (TRE) has really good odds of making you feel better – e.g. better sleep, more relaxed muscles, calm-alert mind, etc. You get to learn it from the one who created it — a rare opportunity in and of itself — and then, after the two-day workshop, you get to go home and continue its benefits by practicing at home on your own because it really is that easy to learn.
• Learning more about stress, trauma and the obstacles to conflict resolution from Dr. David Berceli is apt to change the way you see the world (personal, local and global) – cycles we seem stuck in will make more sense — and recognizing what needs to change is likely to make you feel more optimistic.
• Celebrating Living Ubuntu’s 10th Birthday in the evening will include lots of fun!
• The whole weekend benefits Living Ubuntu’s project, Trauma Recovery for East African Refugees in San Diego. Continue reading