Of Horseshoe Crabs and Empathy

Posted on Jul 26, 2016
Of Horseshoe Crabs and Empathy

  “That estuary used to be full of kelp and eels when we were kids,” said Stella. “It was full of all kinds of wildlife. Crabs, clams, horseshoe crabs – there was a mussel bed right over there – one time I was swimming in that pond and came face to face with an eel.” […]

In a Rhino, Everything

Posted on Feb 20, 2016
In a Rhino, Everything

This article has been translated into French and Russian.   I received the following email from a young woman, a student at an elite law school. I want to quote it in full, because it cuts so deep to core issues so many change agents face. I don’t cry very often. But this week I cried […]

On Immigration

Posted on Aug 27, 2015
On Immigration

This post has been translated into Chinese.   I recently received the following question from my contact form. I’ve decided to answer it in public, because similar concerns are woven into the immigration narrative far beyond the UK. “I work for a women’s refuge, recently a Turkish women can to stay with us. Her attitude     […]

Qualitative Dimensions of Collective Intelligence: Subjectivity, Consciousness, and Soul

Posted on May 11, 2015
Qualitative Dimensions of Collective Intelligence: Subjectivity, Consciousness, and Soul

This article appeared in Spanda Journal (v. 2/2014) Abstract:  This essay plays with two definitions of collective intelligence, drawing on two meanings of the word “intelligent” that bring to bear relevant arguments from the philosophy of mind, particularly in reference to artificial intelligence (AI) and its distinction between “strong AI” and “weak AI.” One definition […]

A Neat Inversion

Posted on Nov 23, 2014
A Neat Inversion

As an American visiting South Africa I was struck by the near ubiquity of domestic servants among white South Africans. Households that are in all other ways decidedly middle class have at least one and often two or three domestic servants. This bespeaks the enormous inequality of wealth that prevails in that country, one of […]

A Beautiful World of Abundance

Posted on Sep 10, 2014
A Beautiful World of Abundance

You can find a French translation of this essay here.   Scarcity is one of the defining features of modern life. Around the world, one in five children suffers from hunger. We fight wars over scarce resources such as oil. We have depleted the oceans of fish, and the ground of clean water. Worldwide, people […]

De Kringloop van Terreur

Posted on Jan 16, 2014
De Kringloop van Terreur

In de nasleep van terreuraanslagen verkondigen politici graag dat “We ons niet laten intimideren”. Daarmee lijken ze te bedoelen dat we ons niet angstig terugtrekken, maar de terroristen uit zullen roeien, ze berechten en ter verantwoording roepen. “Laat daarover geen misverstand bestaan”, zeggen ze dan. Er wordt hard en doortastend optreden beloofd, waarmee verhoogde beveiliging […]

Fear of a Living Planet

Posted on Nov 7, 2013
Fear of a Living Planet

Does the concept of a living planet uplift and inspire you, or is it a disturbing example of woo-woo nonsense that distracts us from practical, science-based policies? The scientifically-oriented nuts-and-bolts environmental or social activist will roll her eyes upon hearing phrases like “The planet is a living being.” From there it is a short step […]

The Cycle of Terror

Posted on Apr 17, 2013
The Cycle of Terror

There is a Dutch translation of this essay.  You can also read this article auf Deutsch.   In the wake of terror attacks, politicians are fond of proclaiming, “We will not be intimidated.” By this they seem to mean that we won’t cower in fear, but will boldly root out the terrorists, visit upon them […]

The Cynic and the Boatbuilder

Posted on Apr 10, 2013
The Cynic and the Boatbuilder

This essay has been translated into Spanish.   A few days ago in Stockholm I was walking by the water and was accosted by a youngish man from Ireland who shouted out my name. This is not something that happens to me often –– apparently he is among that small subset of humanity that has […]

Latent Healing

Posted on Jan 7, 2013
Latent Healing

The purpose of this essay is not to instruct the reader on the fallacy of the technological fix. We can assume that by now the environmentally conscious person has seen through the delusion of applying technology to remedy the problems that have been caused by previous technology. It is obvious that a new pesticide won’t […]

We Are Unlimited Potential: A Talk with Joseph Chilton Pearce

Posted on Dec 10, 2012
We Are Unlimited Potential: A Talk with Joseph Chilton Pearce

Last week I sat down for a telephone conversation with Joseph Chilton Pearce, an author who has had a big influence not only on my work, but on the way I have raised my children. He alerted me early on to the damage that hospital birthing, day care, television, and modern schooling do to the […]

The Lovely Lady from Nestle

Posted on Oct 6, 2012
The Lovely Lady from Nestle

At a conference recently I happened to overhear a conversation between one of the speakers, a vice-president of Nestle Corporation, and a college student who was questtioning the VP’s glowing portrayal of Nestle’s social and environmental policies. The student bravely interrogated the VP about their leading beverage category, bottled water. “Do we really need such […]

The Healing of Congo

Posted on Jul 5, 2012
The Healing of Congo

Congo is like a microcosm of the entire planet, taken to its extreme. One of the most beautiful places on Earth, it is also among the most troubled.   Today I received the following letter from my dear friend, Cynthia Jurs. For the last two decades she has traveled all over the world on a mission […]

Sacred Economics: Money, the Gift and Society in the Age of Transition

Posted on Jan 12, 2012
Sacred Economics: Money, the Gift and Society in the Age of Transition

Transcribed Talk from January 13, 2012 at “The Hive” in Vancouver, BC.   Thank you for such a warm welcome. I’m quite amazed actually. I don’t think I’ve ever spoken to this large a crowd that was just here for me. I’ve spoken to more people at conferences, but that wasn’t just for me. Part […]

The Lost Marble

Posted on Dec 10, 2011
The Lost Marble

Chuang Chou dreamt he was a butterfly, fluttering about happily, completely forgetting he was Chou. Soon he awoke, and was very much Chou again. Was Chou dreaming he was a butterfly, or was a butterfly dreaming he was Chou? –Chuang-tse   When I was a child, before video games were invented, I spent hours and […]

Elephants: Please Don’t Go

Posted on Oct 10, 2011
Elephants: Please Don’t Go

A week ago I was invited to join in a worldwide meditation on behalf of the elephants in Africa, which are under renewed threat of extinction. Ordinarily I am resistant to vigils, meditations, and “sending light,” because it feels like a cop-out, a substitute for doing something. There is something obviously wrong with the attitude, […]

Why the Age of the Guru is Over

Posted on Jul 7, 2011
Why the Age of the Guru is Over

For a few decades now, it seems, humanity has been on the verge of a breakthrough in collective consciousness. Perhaps it was the Hippies in the 60s who saw it first. To them, it was crystal clear that the consciousness revolution would sweep all before it, that within a few years’ time such institutions as […]

A Circle of Gifts

Posted on Nov 1, 2010
A Circle of Gifts

  This essay is also available in French Wherever I go and ask people what is missing from their lives, the most common answer (if they are not impoverished or seriously ill) is “community.” What happened to community, and why don’t we have it any more? There are many reasons – the layout of suburbia, […]

Truth and Magic in the Third Dimension

Posted on Dec 10, 2009
Truth and Magic in the Third Dimension

In a past life, you were a Midwestern farmer and I was an Indian woman. I had the ability to make seeds sprout and grow in my hand. I taught you ways of growing grain in harsh weather, which you shared with the other settlers in the area.” A psychic intuitive told me this at […]

Rituals for Lover Earth

Posted on Dec 10, 2009
Rituals for Lover Earth

The medicine man enters the outer vestibule of the sacred healing chamber. He dons the ceremonial vestments and performs the ritual ablutions, purifying himself for the healing ritual that is about to commence. Putting on identical masks, he and his acolytes enter the chamber, to which all others are forbidden entrance. The man they are […]

A Gathering of the Tribe

Posted on Dec 7, 2009
A Gathering of the Tribe

Once upon a time a great tribe of people lived in a world far away from ours. Whether far away in space, or in time, or even outside of time, we do not know. They lived in a state of enchantment and joy that few of us today dare to believe could exist, except in […]

Reuniting the Self: Autoimmunity, Obesity, and the Ecology of Health (Part 2)

Posted on Nov 10, 2008
Reuniting the Self: Autoimmunity, Obesity, and the Ecology of Health (Part 2)

This article is Part 2 of a two-part series. Read Part 1 here. What is a human being? A human being is a nexus of relationships: the sum total of the connections among his or her cells, organs, and inner ecosystem; connections to other human beings that define the psyche; connections to the rest of […]

The Miracle of Self-Creation, Part 2

Posted on Feb 10, 2008
The Miracle of Self-Creation, Part 2

This article is Part 2 in a series. Read Part 1 here and Part 3 here.   If we are to end the war against the self, the struggle to be good, and the war against nature that goes along with it, we must instead trust nature. First and foremost that means to trust our […]

The Stars are Shining for Her

Posted on Dec 10, 2006
The Stars are Shining for Her

If I say, “The reason the hawk circled over me nine times and headed East was to tell me to begin my return journey,” does that sound scientific to you? Or am I projecting meaning onto a world that is essentially random? Do the events of our lives have any meaning, or do they just […]

From Opinion to Belief to Knowing

Posted on Dec 8, 2005
From Opinion to Belief to Knowing

It all started when I was living in Taiwan, 21 years old, having just graduated from Yale with a degree in mathematics and philosophy. Of course I did what most people do with such a degree—I got a job in a bar. One day on my way to work I attempted to kick-start my motorcycle. […]

Soul Families

Posted on Dec 7, 2005
Soul Families

A main theme of The Ascent of Humanity is an Age of Reunion that is to follow the Age of Separation whose end we are witnessing today. In this transition, the converging crises of the planet are the birth pangs. Like a newborn coming to the breast, our species will experience a Reunion with each […]

The Ethics of Eating Meat

Posted on Jun 28, 2002
The Ethics of Eating Meat

Most vegetarians I know are not primarily motivated by nutrition. Although they argue strenuously for the health benefits of a vegetarian diet, many see good health as a reward for the purity and virtue of a vegetarian diet, or as an added bonus. In my experience, a far more potent motivator among vegetarians–ranging from idealistic […]