Painting by Galileo Chini

“There’s a revolution that needs to happen and it starts from inside each one of us. We need to wake up and fall in love with Earth. We’ve been homo sapiens for a long time. Now it’s time to become homo conscious. Our love and admiration for the Earth has the power to unite us and remove all boundaries, separation and discrimination. Centuries of individualism and competition have brought about tremendous destruction and alienation. We need to re-establish true communication–true communion–with ourselves, with the Earth, and with one another, as children of the same mother. We need more than new technology to protect the planet. We need real community and co-operation.

Once we can accept the impermanence of our civilization with peace, we will be liberated from our fear. Only then will we have the strength, awakening and love we need to bring us together. Cherishing our precious Earth–falling in love with the Earth–is not an obligation. It is a matter of personal and collective happiness and survival.”

— Thich Nhat Hahn

And now our whole planet stands at the doorway between the worlds, the outer world that we are systematically poisoning and the inner world of the soul and the world soul, whose existence we have forgotten. As mediator between the worlds our human presence and practice are a vital life force; our awareness of breath and its spiritual dimension is healing both for our individual self and the world around us. At this pivotal moment in our shared destiny the world of light needs to be consciously connected to the physical world, and we are this connection.”

— Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

I’ve spent my adult years trying to reconcile the call of both nature and culture, living in cities where I felt intellectually engaged but physically hampered and in the country where I was naturally happier. We moved to the French countryside before the Internet started to connect everyone and their thoughts, but when it did, it reduced that conflict for me. Until that time we spent a fortune on phone calls to the States so the kids could maintain their friendships. We hovered with a stop watch.

A lot of friends my age won’t use it. They’ve heard about hacking and identity theft and they have lived their whole lives without it, so they don’t bother. For me, it has been a whole new world to explore. I took an extensive library of physical books to France, but you never have enough books. Being able to read online has been a boon.

For anyone who has a hankering to write, things have gotten easier because of the Internet. On Medium you can put your toe in the water and see if anyone is interested in what you have to say. You can practice communicating in words and take note how that works for you, how it feels. If you hit a nerve, you might even make some money.

Like a pianist playing scales, I sit down and write some kind of meditation every day. It’s an angst-free practice. Something always shows up. I have more to say than I realized. An image or a quote reminds me of a recurring emotion and I dive in without a clear idea until the end what it was about.

In the meantime culture and nature are working out their dance steps inside me, just as they have done on other stages. The body has its own spirituality and for me nature encourages those energies. By the time I was a teenager I knew I needed an intellectual life but for years I discounted my equal need for nature.

The unexpected appearance of the Internet in the world has made it possible for someone like me to become more myself.

I occasionally write fiction and also about creativity, loving, language learning and travel. I’m a longtime painter and reader.

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