Welcome to Episode 15 of the Empathic Writing Journey Podcast! I started this podcast nearly 6 months ago as a way of chronicling my intent to:
(1) FREE myself;
(2) BE myself;
(3) deepen + sweeten my love affair with life; and
(4) promote empathy and permaculture/regenerative design.
Being faithful to each of these intentions has helped bring me healing I didn't even know I needed. I was surprised to learn how angry and resentful I had become from feeling like I never had enough time or mental space to simply think.
It seemed modern life was always rushing me along, and crowding my inner world with unimportant clutter and chatter. Two things I'm not particularly fond of, by the way. I'm contemplative. And mystical. And empathic. To flourish, I need plenty of time and space to tend to my solitary arts.
But my life wasn't designed around those aspects of myself. My need to think deeply. Move slowly. Connect meaningfully. Create beauty. And live gently.
Instead of doing those things so important for my well-being, I wasted my energy trying to adapt to CrazyWorld! I had accepted an extroverted, consumptive lifestyle as my own, even though at my core I am neither of those things. I was at odds with myself, and experienced a lot of suffering as a result. So six months ago I just stopped listening, to the cultural mantra that hums in the background like a humidifier, and convinces so many of us to slay our dreams. I listened, instead, to my truth-telling heart which had been holding The List my soul had made, of the things It wanted to do with this life. Needless to say, droning along was not on that List.
Living your dreams is the entire point. Believing otherwise is not only an acceptance of the ho-hum, it's an insistence on it.
I'll close my check-in with this final observation: The caterpillar has NO IDEA of the things the butterfly gets to enjoy. If it is transformation you seek, it's important to consult those who themselves have been transformed. It's a lot of well-meaning caterpillars out there.
I'm interested to know what's new, or lively, with you? Please let me know in the comments.
Jill Lanier of Permie Peeks...
...recently featured my work on her inspiring blog. Please see her article here. She includes some pictures of vegetable beds from my yard, getting a nice watering from young neighbors :-)
A recommended Charles Eisenstein Video
Big thanks to Monica for sharing with me Charles Eisenstein's talk at the recent Slow Living Summit called, "Time is running out. Let's slow down." It helped me better understand the anger I mentioned in my check-in. Please make the time to watch, and consider, what he says.
The 6th Permaculture Design principle.
The 6th Permaculture Design Principle advises us to "Produce no waste." To carry out this principle, I recommend backpacking/"roughing it" at least once in your life for a minimum of 2-3 nights:
(1) You will consider every piece of trash you produce, because you have to carry every piece of trash you produce until the end of your trip; and
(2) When you have an established relationship with the outdoor world -- when you connect to some aspect of its beauty and power, and not just in an exploitive way, but in a relational way -- you will feel protective of its resources and, at the very least, you'll be more mindful about burning through 'em.
Along those lines, below is a two-ingredient conditioner that made no waste, AND made my tight curls soft, defined and frizz-free. See pictures below!
Accepting my naturally coarse + curly hair. Finally.
It took 43.5 years, but I have finally embraced my naturally curly hair! No more forcing it straight with heat, and self-rejection. (I'll share more about that whole process later.) Curly hair is always thirsty and ready for more moisture, so I loved the results of this simple, very effective two-ingredient hair conditioner:
* 1 banana (you can also use an avocado)
* 1 egg
Mix in bowl until the texture is a smooth puree. Rub into hair liberally, from scalp to ends. Pile hair on top of head, and cover with plastic cap for at least 20 minutes. Rinse. Enjoy softness, shine, pattern definition, decreased frizz... and aside from a banana peel, you make NO waste! ;-)
The question "How are you?" is PROFOUND.
But it has been watered-down to a synonym for "Hello."
Forced or fake auto-responses of obligated okay-ness are expected.
(And if you are going through something tragic, it really doesn't matter! Every social encounter OPENS with this well-established Ritual of Insincerity.)
The question "How are you?" prompts an answer that begins with "I AM _____________."
This means many times each day, you are invited to SPEAK THE MOST POWERFUL STATEMENT that can be spoken of yourself.
And the socially-expected thing to do, is be QUICK + SLICK with your answer.
For a change... TAKE YOUR TIME, and tell your truth. ✍🏾