Are you a Nature-person or a Human-person?

Birch and electricity

On what side of the divide between nature and culture do you live? Or are you one of the few who are living wholeheartedly in the Biosphere?

I used to be a nature-person, but then something unexpected happened. This text from my diary April 2011 tells it well:

“Yesterday evening during meditation, the Field of Humanity emerged/came down on me or how to say it. I was a part of it, inside, home. Breathed in deeply. One with all of humanity. Humanity as a specific field of consciousness that I’m a part of.

Feel like a lost sheep coming back to the herd. A herd I never belonged to. Not even knew it existed. Not in this way.

My life so far has been about the Planet and Nature. It has been my home and focus, where my heart has been. Humanity has been a concept – all those other people living on the Planet.

Tonight I dared to open to the pain – all the pain humans suffer, the suffering we, as humans, cause other beings, my pain of being a part of this, the pain of being able to do almost nothing about all this pain and suffering.

When the pain had finished its session in me, I dropped into the embrace of ”Everything is perfect as it is”.

To not go crazy on this Planet, you either have to numb your self or hold a paradox.”

Greater distance, more love

The day after, when I went for a walk, I met a beautiful pheasant. I, as a human, met the bird. We were in different fields. It was a bigger distance between us than before, but more love. Before we were both inside the field of Nature and more of the same; a we. Now it was a different love. Then I met a woman I know, and we also had a different relation, much closer, less distance, we were two humans talking together.

After this experience, I could hear and feel from what perspective someone I spoke with came; if they were identified with the field of Humanity or the field of Nature. My environmentalist and nature photographer friends mostly belonged to the latter, my other friends to the former.

So what are the perspectives and where do you belong?

THEY destroy nature!

Nature-people feels deep pain when a forest is cut down, when the bees get fewer, when ecosystems collapse and species go extinct. To handle the pain, we disassociate from humanity. It’s THEM destroying nature, not me. I’m not part of this!

We grief every extinct species for the loss in itself, and every habitat loss is a wound in our body.

We pay a high price for this; always feel a vague distance to other people. Though we are so used to it, we think this is how it is for everyone.

As a nature-person, my challenge is to realise that I belong to the Embrace of Humanity, unconditionally. My life is part of the destruction of the planet. It hurts, but it’s true. To dare to feel into my personal part in the destruction and my part as a member of Humanity.

Being a part of Humanity also let me take pride in all the amazing human achievements and feel more at home among other humans. For me, this has been very healing on a personal level.

harvest energy and food

Humans first!

Human-people feels pain when other humans suffer; we humans are the important ones. Nature is over there, and I’m not a part of IT, I’m a human. Though of course I can visit nature and enjoy its beauty and go hiking, biking, skiing, outdoor life is great for my health.

We disassociate from nature, and the guilt and grief we may feel are towards future generations of humans.

We talk about preservation and sustainability from our human-centred perspective. We protect the animals and plants for the benefit of our economy, and we are grateful for all the ecosystem services nature gives us. And pandas are adorable and should be saved so my grandkids can enjoy them, and we don’t know what plants may provide us with a drug for a disease, so we should keep the rainforests.

As a human-person, my challenge is to feel into all the pain we cause other living beings on the planet. To sincerely grief the death of every tree and bumblebee. Not as a loss for us humans, but as a loss in its own right; to meet the guilt. And to feel into the truth that I’m part of life on Earth, part of our vast family tree and the global ecosystem.

On the other side of this process lays a deep belonging to both Humanity and the Biosphere.

The Embrace of the Biosphere

Culture vs. Nature

The path to healing the divide inside ourselves and to handling the guilt, despite we are a human-person or a nature-person is to realise that it’s not two separate spheres.

Humanity inside the Biosphere

It’s two nested Embraces, and I live inside both, we all are, always.

All living beings inside the Biosphere

And I’m part of the Embrace of the Biosphere as a single human being, as are all living animals, plants, fungi and bacteria. Unconditionally.

Nature and Culture are words of separation. The word Biosphere transcends and includes them, that’s why I prefer to use it when we are talking about the bigger picture. But when I’m going for a walk in the forest or planning a trip to the theatre, nature and culture makes perfect sense. But to move into the future on our planet, the Biosphere is a much, much better and more accurate concept.

To dare to belong may take some courage and time.
To own the guilt and become aware that I belong to both Humanity and the Biosphere.
Unconditionally.
It’s the only path forward.

The Biosphere and Alignment

Alignment and the Biosphere

I love the word “Alignment”. It’s a gentle move; finding my place together with others in a broader structure, and as an over-arching structure, letting my parts find their optimal place. All the way up and down.

All the cells in my body are aligned, forming this human being. All species in a healthy eco-system, are aligned with each other and the environment.

I see alignment as an essential path forward, whatever happens in my life and on planet Earth. It’s a tool for building stable foundations, and it’s a tool for handling rough times together, and for healing myself. It’s an outer and inner work, done by individuals together.

As a human being, I align all of me with the Biosphere.
As the Biosphere, I align all my parts, all living beings.
Unconditionally.

Alignment and the Biosphere

The Wider Embraces method, is the best tool for alignment I know about. Please tell me if you know a better one!

It’s powerful, yet soft.
It’s complex, yet simple to do.
It’s a collective work, yet respects the integrity of every individual.

Alignment is essential, and I insist that you give it a try.
Do it for yourself, Humanity and the Biosphere. We need each other.
Join here.

2nd Wave Future

2nd Wave Future

In August 2018, I had an extraordinary experience that I’ve hesitated to share because I don’t want to be seen as crazy, nor as hopeless and pessimistic.

But the more I’ve dived into the message I got, alone and together with my beautiful friends, the more I’ve come to see that it’s a very fruitful and powerful perspective from which to feel and act. So I’ve decided to share it.

From my diary 7th of August 2018:

Took the perspective as the Embrace of the Galaxy and held all my stars and planets. Unconditionally. Focused on all my planets with life.

In an instant, I realised that the first wave of a technologically advanced culture on a planet never makes it. It’s the second, or more commonly, the third wave that succeeds in creating a long-term, non-destructive culture.

As this human being, I gain some comfort from this. Being a part of the first wave on Earth, we are not supposed to make it. We are a part of a long planetary development.

There is no way to check if this message is true, but the quality of my experience was vivid and clear. I’ve had similar types of insights before, and it has always been a good decision to take them seriously. We can use the message as a lens and look at our planet and moment in history through it, and we can feel into it and let it hold us. It’s a surprisingly nurturing and comforting place.

The Life Force and Our Guilt

The Life Force and Guilt

The message tells us that we are not evil or doing it wrong; it is just an impossible task to switch from 3.7 billion years of striving to survive and grow while being firmly limited by external forces, to in a few generations, becoming so powerful that the only thing that could hold us is us. And we are not able to do that.

We have come far in our development, to the beginning of global solidarity among humans, that is huge. But focusing on only humans have undermined all other life forms and the climate, and that is not a path to ”creating a long-term, non-destructive culture”; it’s a path to collapse.

I’ve written more about this in the blog post ”The Irrepressible Life Force”. It builds on experiences from a small gathering of friends where we dived into the forces that have brought us here; how one cell that lived around 3,7 billion years ago has exploited the whole planet, how we all are related, and how we are all descendants of the survivors from each generation.

Meaning – Hope – Hopeless – Hopefree – Future

Meaning in the Long Run

I’ve been a part of the environmental movement since the 70ties. Always with a positive attitude, things are getting better, and we can fix the problems! Now I’ve come to a point where I don’t believe that anymore, the challenges are too numerous and sever. You can read more about this in my former blog post “No More Polite and Positive Thinking“.

With the message about the 2nd wave future, I’ve gained a long term view that gives meaning. It’s not about us humans here and now; it’s about life on Earth in billions of years ahead. It’s humbling and motivating.

A Foundation

Creating a Foundation for the 2nd Wave Future

So the vital question becomes; how do we create the best possible foundation for the second wave of a technologically advanced culture on planet Earth?

  • What not to destroy or invent that will cause long term harm to the planet?
  • What gifts and warnings would we like to send forward to our successors?
  • How do we do that practical? Ceramic plaques, stone carvings, hard drives?
  • Can thought patterns and consciousness be sustained over time?
  • Is it about some hundred years, some thousand years, some million years or more?

What would you like to send into the future?

How to deal with this?

How do you feel when you think about the future?  It’s not easy to grapple with what’s going on and how to hold it as a single human being. Our local group of women have been processing the “2nd Wave Future”-message in several ways since August. Here are some hints about how we have dived into it:

Get the Facts

Dive deep into the facts about the state of the Planet. The dark and the lights. Knowledge is essential and also to acknowledge uncertainty.

Hope or Hope-free?

Choosing between to keep hoping that we will make it, or let go of that idea. Changing energy from hopeful to a palliative state of mind, or not. It’s scary to lose our usual way of living, to face the death of civilisations, species and ecosystems on a global scale, though humanity has gone through that on a regional scale throughout history.

Mourning and Grief

Let all the emotions that your hope blocked flow freely. Let them pour out into a mighty river of sorrow, grief and mourning. It’s a sane response. And even if you think we will make it, there are so much to grief amid the sixth mass extinction.

Gratitude

Gratitude for what we, humans and the whole planetary family tree, have accomplished so far. We created the first wave of a technologically advanced culture on this planet together!

Process

Joy and Beauty

Enjoying life and all the small things we can do together; eating good food, dancing, painting, walk in nature, and so on. We do this both for our own sake here and now, but also as a part of our legacy.

Since I made the leap and started to focus on the second wave, the value of the present moment has increased. Joy and beauty are everywhere, here and now! Though some days are dark, and that is okay.

Moving on

The path to eventually turn our 1st wave of a technologically advanced culture on planet Earth into a long-term success, or to provide for the 2nd wave, are very much the same work. Though the later offers a broader perspective, less stress and a more open heart; so I go with that, it motivates me much more to act and live fully.

My Trigger: Deep Adaptation

It was viewing two videos by professor Jem Bendell that triggered me to write this post now, more than half a year after my experience. He is working with a concept he calls Deep Adaptation; how to live and act in a world of ecological and social collapse. I recommend the videos and his paper:

14 minutes video: Jem Bendell – Deep Adaptation
44 minutes video: Deep Adaptation – Jem Bendell & Toni Spencer
Pdf: Deep Adaptation: A Map for Navigating ClimateTragedy

What I found diving into his work is that the “2nd Wave Future”-message adds two significant aspects; the release of guilt, both on a personal and societal level, and the meaning that comes from sensing into a future civilisation, even if it’s far away. And the Wider Embraces method adds the broader perspectives as the Biosphere and the Galaxy, that transcends and includes Humanity.

Photos: I love to photograph ice, its so organic and diverse in its expressions.

No More Polite and Positive Thinking

No more Positive Thinking

The last days I’ve come to a point where I’m fed up with being nice. I feel trapped in a bubble of politeness and normality. Our current time on planet Earth is not normal. Positive thinking and pointing at alternatives and being polite is not the way forward anymore. It has been overdue for a long time.

Below is a brief summary of some of the common thought-patterns, that I see as false or counterproductive or both. How many of them do you subscribe to? Why?

I end this text with my suggestion for a path forward; Alignment.
It’s not a solution, but a decent path.

Uncertanty – Reluctant to comprehend feedback loops, tipping points and consequences we can't foresee

Uncertainty

We talk as if we are in control and can choose between 1,5 or 2 or 3 or 5 degrees rise in global temperature. Reluctant to comprehend feedback loops, tipping points and consequences we can’t foresee.

The forecasts, the goals and the treaties about degrees make us believe that the scientists and politicians have it all under control. They don’t.

The idea that the earth is a system we humans can control and steer is false. It puts us above the planet. Yes, we are making a vast impact, but we are not in control. The earth is not a machine, and we are not its stewards.

Our brains are not the most complex thing on Earth, they are part of the global ecosystem, of the biosphere.

Other Crises

Other Crises

We have narrowed our narrative to climate, but the Earth is a system in many crises. Today’s focus on climate change makes us forget all the other problems and provides us with the illusion that if we solve this issue, everything will be fine. It won’t.

The problem is not carbon dioxide, it’s our way of thinking and acting, our dominance and strength. That we see the Biosphere as resources and not as our home.

We hope that technology will save us

Technology

We hope that technology will save us. That the solar panels and some future machine that sucks carbon out of the air will solve our problems. But the climate is in essence not a technological problem.

If technology delivers one solution, we will use that extra space to consume more or become more people. There is nothing that will limit us, except the break down of the planet. Or that we, in one way or another, align ourselves with the Biosphere.

This has brought us to the midst of the sixth mass extinction.

Human Centeredness

We focus on people, on each other, we are the ones that count. Forgetting that this planet is the home to millions of species and a multitude of organisms that are non-human. We externalise the costs to other species to make this a beautiful world for us. This has brought us to the midst of the sixth mass extinction.

We, humans, are related to all living beings on the planet, all life on Earth formes one huge family tree and we live and breath together. We belong here, as do all other organisms. Unconditionally.

It will not be a wonderful world for anyone if we don’t align ourselves with the Biosphere.

This prevents us from feeling into the situation on the planet.

Positive Thinking

We assure ourselves that positive thinking is the best way forward. If we are hopeful and look for solutions, we can find new paths and inspire others. This prevents us from feeling into the situation on the planet. It makes us shallow, artificial and neurotic.

We are living in the midst of a global funeral. It’s time to mourn, not to be optimistic. To breath in death and pain. To accept what is going on.

To align ourselves with the Biosphere is a path forward. To open ourselves to the pain and the deaths we are causing.

Alignment is a gift to the future.

Alignment

I will prioritise truth over nice and share my fears and sorrows, even if it upsets you. But most of all I’ll work with alignment; all the way up and down. Finding my place, both in the Biosphere as a whole and in the Biosphere as a system of related parts.

Alignment is a way to deal with what happens here and now.
Alignment is a gift to the future.
It’s a path forward whatever happens.
Not a solution.

Join

If you are interested in being part of forming a new online group that will use the Wider Embraces method to explore and work with alignment, a group with space for truth and sorrow.

The first meeting will be at the beginning of March 2019, and you are very welcome to join, read more.

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 All images are composed of two photos and are from my series “A New Level”.

Innside Earth – Hell or Healing?

Inside a Swiss Mountain at Rosenlaui

When you think of planet Earth; do you see the oceans and the continents? The air? I guess you do.

But are you aware of the inner of the planet? The part of Earth that is hidden, that we can’t see, nor visit. I must admit that I’ve almost entirely related to Earth’s surface and hardly ever conceiving it as the massive globe it is.

A Sunday evening a few weeks ago during one of our online Wider Embraces session we took the perspective as the Group. Then we felt a pull downwards, and we sunk into the inner of our planet, into the magma.

It’s a surprisingly interesting perspective, and we’ve been exploring it since. It’s also one of the most healing places we’ve been to, both physically and psychologically. We don’t experience any heat, but a dense, slow-moving ocean of melted rock, very comfortable. Our bodies relaxing on a deep level and our unexamined fears of the underworld dissolving.

My Atoms Feel at Home here

The atoms in my body know this place, they’ve been here before during their 4,5 billion long planetary journeys. When the Earth formed, its inside and outside shifted in intense volcanic activity for the first half billion years.

Yesterday we descended all the way to the centre of the planet. Strange place with upward all the way around. Took a while to wrap my head around, though my body had no problem to rest here. Not being stretched between up and down, but gently embraces from all directions.

So on an atomic level, this place deep inside the planet is home, but as biological beings, we wouldn’t survive here a millisecond. We are surface beings, with a planetary body.

Not a Trace of Hell

But where is Hell? We looked around, but couldn’t find it, not a trace of evil creatures lurking below the surface. No trolls, no eternal fire, no shadows or dark impulses. Only peace.

The downward direction is almost always considered bad and wrong in our languages and our myths. As humanity, we are walking on the ground, imagining that beneath our feet there is hell and above us is heaven. And even if we are secular and don’t buy into the stories, it’s part of our collective subconscious, and it makes us disconnected from Earth. Aiming for Mars and the stars, instead of feeling our deep bonds with this planet.

For me, this journey into the inner of our planet has been healing and grounding. There is nothing between me and the massive body of Earth. I belong here, unconditionally.