Reforesting Eastern Australia

There are some folks who are able to live without money, (rare) and even travel through the world without existing on the monetary system. This has always been a dream for me, but not really realistic or at least too far ahead still yet for my capabilities and wisdom of how to make it happen. Fortunately, I do alright with very little, and just try to spend what I have responsibly and with good intentions. As I see how money can corrupt and is it at the roots of most world issues, and it is tempting to leave it, but it can be daunting. I usually rely an the old codes of gift economy, exchanging my gifts for monetary support, volunteering my service, trading systems, and funding. It is a humble lifestyle without excess and luxury that doesn’t always work, and I am still figuring out the mechanics of it all. This brings me to something I have been putting into the works since February…
I’m trying to move from this island (Newfoundland) before the winter hits to go plant trees in Eastern Australia. This is my next big project and I can’t do it alone. I’ve created a fund for anyone who would love to help me. It is hard enough finding work in my own country, as the farming and fishing season is over, and the building year is coming to end. All visas are in place to move to Australia to work with the folks at Timberwolf. Help me in this mission, and support something larger than myself, an effort to bring back native animal habitat and large forest in the surroundings of Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney and New South Wales.

The Mission: Travel to Eastern Australia to restore natural forest and create native habitat in both rural and urban areas through large scale reforestation, private land and landscaping.

What for: Any money raised from this will go toward the project. The flight from Canada to Australia, basic hostel accomodations, forestry gear, field specific training, and transportation costs. I am looking to make this happen with a start date during the Australia summer (December-February)

Where: Queensland territory:  New South Wales, Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne.

Why: Finding public and community support to back me on this objective for planting thousands of trees to restore the balance of a healthy ecological function to Eastern Australia. To help me on my way to complete this job to return beauty to the country, and green spaces to the city, and in the process building a new sustainable example for commercial forestry.

I plan on spending up to 6 months in Australia on this project, in order to plant enough trees to make a noticeable difference. Using modern Canadian tree planting techniques, it is possible to plant 2000-4000 seedlings per day. It is non-invasive to the environment and does  not require heavy machinery, or destructive techniques that disturb animal habitation. Instead it is a smart, efficient, and non-confrontational method of planting, using only a shovel, bags, and fertilizer. I can not do this alone, and seek the donations of those who recognize the importance of healing damaged and exploited areas of this earth. For those who read my blog at you are already familiar with my field of work in permaculture, rewilding and bringing forests back, as well as my documentation of indiginous peoples from my travels.

I don’t want to just ask for money without giving anything back, and I want to give people the possibility of supporting me if they feel they want to. I will be making a textually narrated photo album with selections from my latest travels, and stories in the coming months to provide to those who would like to own one. I have always wanted to put one of these together, and possibly in the future I can self publish it.

If you like what I’m doing with my life, what I write about, or if I inspire your dreams to come alive, to travel, to take an adventure or you just enjoy reading about my adventures, your energies, thoughts and donations are extremely valued to me.

$10 I will have your name on a personal honor page on my blog of contributors
$50 I will write a personal email to you and mention on blog of contributors
$100 personal email, mention on blog, letters of progress from the work, and digital version of ‘photostory’ album
$200 personal email, mention on blog, letters of progress from the work, photos of the land, & digital version of ‘photostory’ album from travels
$500 personal email, mention on blog, letters of progress, photos from the land, & digital version of ‘photostory’ album from travels, and a handmade gift

I am interested to get involved with travel and culture magazines out there who may want to support this journey too! And I am always happy to hear from you with feedback, insights, or recommendations of places I see myself traveling to next, namely Australia.

Here is a story from a fellow world traveler who wrote and made a video about his tree planting experience in Tumut, Australia, and the link below to my ‘gofundme’page.

Re:wild Eastern Australia

Australia: The hardest job in the world


The Reservation

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt’s been about two weeks now at the cabin, and it is growing on me, even though I know I will probably only have it for a month. After I leave, someone elses energies will mingle in this space, a different fire will be burned in the hearth, maybe more efficient than my own, new foods will stock the fridge, and the aromas will linger into the wood grain. I think about all the sentimental aspects of cabin living, usually, silence and solitude, sometimes the company of a few friends. Within these walls are more than furniture, there are memories that go beyond this solitary hut, to all other dwelling places I have chosen to inhabit, visited, or spent a night in along the way. As another traveling writer friend of mine wrote about mileage, they are times-stamps of memories, and the most permanent aspects that have importance.

I feel that I could view the history of places I’ve slept and lived on like a timeline going back in a line, one that would number over 100 strong in the past 4 years. Often these places take on behaviors and energies of their own, or aptly titled names. My Icelandic cabin ‘Hvammur’ had a name meaning something like ‘by the Bay’. The abandoned pick up truck with no axles I slept in while picking apples in Nova Scotia was dubbed the ‘whiskey bandit’ because I used to drink fireball before sleep to keep my blood warm,
as the frost would cover the windows in the morning and create quite the chill. In Vermont, a Faroese style cabin held the moniker of the ‘Hyggelig Hytte’ or cozy cabin, in Norse. When thinking I wanted to christen this cabin with a name, instantly ‘The Reservation’ came to mind. There was already some signage on the gate with ‘The Living End’ which I thought too dystopian, but The Reservation rather exemplifies the metaphysics of this cabin. Semi-off grid, no running water, no indoor anything, just an outhouse and a chemical toilet, not fully adequate for winter quarters because of insulation, located in a rather wealthy area, but situated down a dirt road from said urban affluence, in a large wooded land in various states of disregard, cut down, neglect and development. Yes, it has its downfalls, and I think Trump would probably knock it to the ground to build some hotel maybe, because it doesn’t match the rest of the houses. The Reservation stands for the free land, where animals can still roam, and the human being can focus on the being part of human. But even on the Reservation, there are limitations.

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The reservations are plots of land given to the First Nations where they are allowed to carry out restrictive cultural practices, and community lifestyles. But they are not adequate for living off the land, there is little to no big game, no wild orchards or clean water sources, and they live in a semi-primitive state. These were given  to them by the government because they didn’t want them on ‘crown’ land because it had resources like coal, uranium, gold, diamonds and copper. Thus, you either lived on the reservation with little, or were forced back into the cities with a decreased quality of LIFE.

But this is my chosen Reservation for now. I know I can not live here forever, it would not sustain me, but it is a place where I can feel the Indian spirit, through the warping colors of the trees, and the foraged earth, the shallow minnow pond, and the fresh air. If I want to make a brew, then I have to work for it, collect the twigs, and appropriate kindling for the job, throw in some birch-paper, and some moss then patiently blow on the flames, heat up the hearth and fill the pots with water, it takes about 25 minutes to get a good heat while the pots sit on the metal, then another 5 to steep the coffee in filters. I add some Quebec maple syrup, and it is a fine treat. I use it as a kind of social medicine, to take the shy edge off my persona, if I want to go to town. I tried fishing, after over a year of not being out on the water, didn’t catch anything and I think my pond is understocked. After dark, the nights are long, and lonesome. I use this time to heal my body and mind, stretching yogic routines besides a hot fire, meditation, and contemplation. I’m currently reading ‘A Walk in the Hindu Kush’, so my  mind can travel to landscapes beyond what I see out the window. Sometimes I’ll listen to an old Jazz album of Sun Ra or Pharoah Sanders, the frequencies fit will within these walls. I try to relax, and not ‘do’ much, by take time for being here, before I can’t. If I am bold enough to turn on the radio, I hear how the government is trying to dam the Muskrat Falls and river system in Labrador, and risking the safety of the water and the health of the Indigenous Innu and Nunatsiuvut. Of course, this is almost commonplace now. The program switches, and the story of young Native  Americans at the highest threat to suicide in Newfoundland. Nothing good to hear from The Reservation, what else is new. More people complaining about health care, because their medicines are not working, or the people of St. Johns voicing political and social welfare issues. I try to help, to put myself out there for service, attend the Native Friendship Centre, offer work for the community, and I don’t seem to get anywhere.
I am forced to turn the radio off again and return to here and now. The smell of woodsmoke, the howling wind, a far of croak of a raven and a sight of a whirring blue jay. The knowledge of this endtime, maybe the original moniker was more of a satire? Would these be the last places people try to eke out a living when the cities are taken back by the primordial grasses  breaking through concrete, and civilizations fail. I put on a nature documentary from Carl Sagan’s Cosmos and let him offer an opinion from beyond the grave. There are not many other worlds to talk to besides our own. I guess that’s a segway into next week. Life’s pretty rough without money, and I need to keep myself busy with something if I will ever get to Australia. I have been quietly mapping out this move since February, and I have until next July to make it happen, but I don’t want it to take that long. I sit in the cabin, thinking, watching the flames and I don’t know where I’m going next, but just know I need to wait.

Wife Hunting

In the Darwinian view, why is there any reason why we shouldn’t set parameters, and rigorously hunt for a partner in this mating game of life who not only impresses our eyes, but can offer something to the courtship that will become useful and grow. Many women have come and gone in this life, that is just the nature of modern day relationships, people are afraid of commitment, or don’t have the wisdom and spiritual patience to recognize monogamy as a worthwhile experiment. There is a balance here, but one rarely kept.
I have shared my nest with those both older and younger in age and maturity, have forged long distance relationships from oceans apart only to see them wither on the vine like rotting leaves, I have lived every sad country song of love lost, and gained only to lose it again and being kept apart from my lovers arms by interminable circumstances. I have seen beautiful goddesses work black magic and ruin their reputation, and broken women with nothing to their name emanate the purest energies of love, longing and honor. I get lost in the romantic hunt, in the forever sacrifice of being alone, and again thinking you have found a heart like yours. They are a rare breed, the girls of the past, and those I have yet to meet. Some living in their own kingdom, past their stage of opening their doors, or their legs to anyone new. Others, with a confused passion seek the thrills of free love, so called innocence, and the pleasures of the flesh.

I have learned a lot about myself, some things I didn’t want to look at, others I knew were there buried in the rubble and waiting to be cleaned off, or the revered traits I knew were latent but could never really acknowledge. Traveling through this world, by their pull of affection and desire, the women that make me me. Yet, I have lost sight of them, or at least the memories of them are what I have left, and special fragments of their existence that once was, a borrowed sweater, a coyote pelt, crystals and an iron bird, maybe a few strands of hair, or an avocado seed that we ate, carved into a pendant. These are the tangible proofs of my belonging, at least once, to her, and no other, and yet sometimes there seems to be another on the outside, waiting to come in, but when they don’t, you just fondle the items leftover, and think about the hours, days, weeks, months, a kind of force illusion.

Maybe it is that I am hard to keep up to, and this would be true. The woman of my deepest heart would need to support my mission, whatever that is, and if not share in my obsessions, then at least acknowledge them as real. So often it is about the menial substances that get in the way; money, timing, distance, law, nothing to counter the presence of true love, yet somehow like great walls of limitation. I am left wandering, wondering where to find her, on my travels? in a bar? in the countryside? on the street? online? There is always the romantic ideal, and I am one who tries to preserve such sentiments, yet there is only so much waiting a man can do. His primal nature overcomes in the end. The need to find a mate, a lover, an ally, a wife. All of these. So here I am with only a semblance of what could be, caught in all my desires and expectations. I am tired of being alone, and feeling isolated on this planet. Though I am a full person, and do not seek ‘my other half’, I hold open my hand to her who would be the counterpart to my highest self. Where there is true growth, and freedom of being all.

Cabin Days

As I once heard it said by a young Irish boy, “city life is too fast for me, I’m not clever enough to keep up”. So I feel the undeniable truth that country life is the only life I want to live. Cities are more like voluntary prisons, you can always leave them, but once you are in, with your convenient routine, and your contracted existence, you start to feel trapped.
Fortunately I have native roots from the North and was born into small fishing, mining, Indian villages in Canada for the first 7 years of my youth. You know what Robert Anton Wilson said about this first ‘circuit’ of life and the imprinting stages. Anyways I diverge. Now I am staying in a small cabin in Newfoundland, so these are my cabin days, which I so cherish and need from time to time.

There is no internet, so I write my journals from home, and bike to the nearest town to get wi-fi connection via an old railway trail that runs through a broad-leaf forest, then a gorge, and over the Manuels River Hibernia, in Conception Bay. The same rail trail runs all the way to St. Johns, and back through the island to Port-aux-Basques. I have a small stack of books to keep me company if the weather is off, or later in the evenings,
and sometimes the morning, I just find it pacifying but also engaging. I’ll stoke the fire and take the cold edge off, but there is no frost or freezing temperature yet at night. There is no running water, so it is hauled here in carboys, and there is an outhouse in the woods. I have a loft, a balcony, two beds, and a porch, a small kitchen area, a bbq and always stock the mini-fridge with healthy food and stuff dragged from the sea. I like to bring in new or exotic things that I haven’t tried or don’t eat enough of like buffalo cheese, kombucha, kefir, frog legs, and chocolate. It is modest living, the routine is slow, but I find it really efficient and the solitude is abundant. Just watching the fire, sitting by the lake, listening to old music that I love, or writing. All the things one dream of. The downsides are loneliness, excessive daydreaming, and loneliness.

I have found a lot of junk just walking in the arboreal clearings, big iron machinery from the city that might be worth something, old shacks, consumerist crap, sometimes useful items, and a lot of different mushrooms. I am actually becoming a lot more ‘mushroom conscious’ lately, just keeping an eye out for them, identifying them, understanding their role, what they are eating, collecting them. The other day I found psilocybins, amanitas, and reindeer lichens, and possibly also pine boletes though I need a brush up with some of the other edibles.

My days usually go by without stress and I always make things to keep myself busy, thinking about how to fix the fishing rods so I can catch some lake fish, walking the dirt trails and being observant to what birds live around here, watch a documentary or movie now and then, listening to my favorite country music. There is also a radio, which I have checked out, and listen to the outside, what’s going on south of the border, stuff about the election, trump, or social commentary, not that it interests me much, I don’t feel part of it. I think about distant friends, future travels, and past mistakes, then try to remedy them and move forward with making things better here and now. It’s a nice diversion, however long it lasts, maybe a month, maybe until winter, not sure really. I’m wondering who will be my first company, or if I will have any life changing experiences here, and how I can be ready to integrate them in my life.

The cabin lifestyle can be challenging but I have been a man of a cabin several times before, in Nova Scotia, Cape Breton, Vancouver Island, USA and Iceland, not to mention several other semi-primitive homesteads, so I am well acquainted with the modalities, and routine. Chop wood or be cold, gather water, learn to enjoy the silence, take lots of walks to stave off the boredom, make new hobbies and generate pastimes. Just keep yourself busy, it can be kind of isolating if one is not careful. You take high regard for your health and well being when you are living like this, without the distraction and constant infringement of noise, concrete, construction, traffic, crime, and congestion of cities. My heart beats to a different beat, I feel love that is non-personal, I open myself to new things and new experiences while partaking in the tried and true, and you get a lot of time to think things over. In the meantime I am trying to get work with the local trail maintenance group for the Manuels River and East Coast trail, or on a local hobby farm.
There is no farmers market here that I know of but I have seen stalls on the roadsides of people selling some fresh produce, or home-made goods, even right on the town roads. I want to make a few connections here, and find out what’s around. I’ll make another report when things get moving.

Why I Farm

Subjectively speaking, I don’t think farming today arouses the interest of the majority of this human population, nor do I think it could be adequately defined in a cohesive manner by several different cultures simultaneously, as one can observe the radical differences between American farming, Mexican farming, Moroccan farming or Icelandic farming. But this is not an attempt to define the niche of farming into a scientific field, they are the musings of someone who IS a farmer, and knows what that means, at least in my own way, and why that is important to me.

A lot of people would describe me as an atavist, seeking ideals lost in the old world, preserving archaic religion and spiritual abstractions that are peculiar to so few, as to have almost little significance in the current community ethos. I would say they are right on the surface, but wrong to the core. For me, I see farming as a pathway into tradition. A force of creative labor that uses the libidinal energy, in a ritualistic AND habitual manner towards the fertility of the earth, and the production of abundance, both of sentient life, and vegetable life, which by this I mean to incorporate all things that can grow from the soil. Farming uses soil as the alchemical prima materia, or so we can imagine for this metaphor I want to give. Each soil is different in its humus content, its clay deposit, its minerals, or bio-matter, its life and organics. From the soil can be seeded the microcosm of an entire ecological habitat, or it can be depleted in a bad Image result for zapatista corn paintingexperiment. In the smallest of seeds, protected by it’s husk of armor, the entire biological existence is already mapped out, to come into fruition with all the order and beauty that unfurls. From these very seeds, a culture can grow, one of maize, or coffee, rice, and potatoes. We think of the Irish or the islanders of PEI and their world renown spuds, or the golden corn and blue agave of southern Yucatan that are so ingrained in Mayan and Zapatista lifestyle. We honor vicariously the coffee culture of old, from it’s roots in South America every time we drink a brew. I for one have picked the ripe cherries in the cloud forests of Oaxaca, to be transported away by donkeys, and sorted on sun drying racks. Every time I caffeinate myself with a dark bitter cup, I think about these times.


Farming for a connection with the source, with the past, and with an integrated culture, but also with the future. Being a provider. I often think farming is a form of altruism and meditation. There are no mass profits, unless it crosses the threshold of commercial industry, which I witness to be more of a factory like labor than real farming. You make enough to get by, and support your kin. Small scale farming, centered around the family, community, or clan, is for the most part where I focus my labor and time in the world. Image result for coffee picking oaxacaThough my four years of experience on the ground do not stack up to the multi-generational farm-steaders I have met in my travels, this only leaves me with something to aspire to. This is perhaps the second reason why I see merit in farming life, for it’s longevity of spirit, and the fact that there are families who have known nothing else, not because they couldn’t have integrated into a modernistic society or business profile life, but because the tenets of life on the land were satisfying enough to the soul to allow a continual feeling of satedness. The modesty that accompanies most farmers is something of a lost human countenance. You don’t meet anyone who brag about their grandfather who worked as a stock exchange man, and his grandfather before that, and the great-grandfather before. It just doesn’t happen, because there is no pride, no learning process, and honor in that field, and above all no growth, literally, and spiritually. I find especially in sustainable small scale farming, there is no need to go big, or to have large amounts of excess surplus because the minute you start producing multiple times more of your fodder, your produce or your product, then you start working for someone else other than yourself, or the extended self, being the family. Your abundance is only abundance in so far as it is now tracked and portioned out, marketed and controlled. Now you have met with the expectations of a society who can not fend for themselves and are parasitically dependent on your work for their sustenance.

I was recently co-erced into working on a rather large dairy. Living in Newfoundland, thinking I knew a fair amount of the heritage here, I went into it with open arms. Tending a 500 cattle herd, milking routine twice a day, right up my alley. But my expectations fell quite short, and the illusion of the matter came out in the wash so to speak. I was hired as a dairyman, and with any sense of truthfulness I was told I would be in doing the milking routine. Well, after three days of being around the cows, morning and evening, not a single drop came from my work. Instead, the cows were auto-milked, and the whole human interaction was missing. Powerful sucking machines placed on the utters for mass production of milk. I thought with a touch of humility, sure you are getting more from the cow, but what about the talent? and the relationship? and the actual work of the body? It all seemed backwards to me. It felt like a factory. Instead I spent my idle hours of work moving manure piles, scraping stalls, moving cows, cleaning the ground, shoveling shite, and nothing else. Nothing with the cattle themselves. There was no work outside, it was all in several barns, and I thought, these are just like my production line days when I lived in French Canada, completely pointless and directionless. I have not learned a thing, and my health was suffering from constantly inhaling the scent of ammonia. I did not get the sense that the other workers cared much for my well-being, and it all felt more slavish than anything. I had a jolt of reality, and realized I could not do this, I couldn’t even bear it or trick my mind to thinking it was still farming because it wasn’t. I had to remember who I was, where I cam from, and why I am. The objective had changed, while these cows were not treated cruely, they were not allies in the sense of other sentient beings worthy of interaction, they just represented a tag, a value, a commodity to be moted about. Besides the fact that I don’t even drink the milk coming from this farm, so how could I support the production of it. Personally I prefer raw free range, goat milk, or some of the alternatives to milk like almond, oat, or rice milk, but that is another tangent. Needless to say I could not continue here, and it brought to the surface an old paradigm of keeping one’s integrity, even in the face of survival.


As a traveler, I am always looking for work, I am kind of an international hobo in that way, but instead riding airplanes and buses, less than hopping trains. The field of labor generally intrigues me and interests my higher self, because I see a limitless potential there so I am genuinely interested in work, and when it comes to farming, I want to have as much archived experience as I can bottle up until the day I have my own land to put it all into practice. I left the farm, and now i’m jobless, but none less the farmer. Because I see one to be not only a provider of the people, you may have heard the adage ‘farmers feed cities’ but also a kind of hero of the land, cultivating it’s worth and artistically rendering the earth to produce nutrients, proteins, and vitamins for the great cyclic system of life, and recycling.

Rather new to the agrarian lifestyle are the agendas of ‘Rewilded farming’, Perma-culture, and Bio-dynamic farming. The latter, a spiritual agricultural disciplined invented by the genius Rudolf Steiner. It’s like sustainable farming with ritual, and moon cycles tied in, which really is a kind of throwback to the Farmer’s Almanac. The former two of these are reactionary, and somewhat archaic types of farming. Rewilding farms to smooth off the hard edges of industrial mono-culture, and seeing the land in a more primal, gaian manner, that can be let to go feral, and still yield abundance. While permaculture is ultimately a counter to intensive agricultural practice as well, global warming, resource availability, politics, and neo-community building. There are amazing principles in each and I have dabbled with all of these, both personally and communally. But the tenets do not change.

I like to see farming in the scope of it’s effect on the consciousness, or more simply put, on the methodology of why. It is one of these past times that preoccupied our ancestors, and farming really means, living in tune with the cycles of nature and is a kind of symbiotic relationship between biology and the people. It represents a society who are dependent on agrarian principles. One must be knowledgeable about the seasons, about ripening times, about pest control, about harvest schedules, about the weather and temperature, about soil health, planting periods, and I can run the gamut, but these are some basics. You can even get more intensive about it, when permaculture is involved and talk about things like; grafting, animal co-workers, hybridizing, hydroponics, soil building, and so forth. These days, these concepts are no longer really seen as important
in mono-culture. The dirt is already robbed and growing one crop in over-tilled soil, seasons do not matter when vegetables can be grown all year round, and we can find something like peppers or cherries in the market even when they are out of season, the state of the food is compromised by a slew of pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides, it seems all knowledge and wisdom of natural ecology is thrown out, and there is a single pointed focus on production instead. Even now 3D printed food is a thing, and I consider it almost a marker of a new age, a bizarre one to say the least.


So if farming can mean draught horses, black earth, strong bare chested men, and potato harvests, but can also be chemically induced, genetically modified, big CAT tractors, laziness, destruction, cruelty, and stock shares. I just wonder for the future of farming if I as a holder of the tradition by the very work of my own hands will not be able to place it into the arms of my forebears, if this is the last generation to see real farming. It is a scary thought.

Aldous Huxleys Island: review

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I just finished reading, and experiencing Huxley’s utopian novel Island, the third of his works I have bitten off now after the Doors of Perception, and Brave New World, and this is another work of genius, foresight, ingenuity, and pioneer literatureship, is that a word? Now it is.

Where in Brave New World, a strange society, and strange is the world for it was quite removed from it’s political and social setting of the time, is set as the status quo, a population of genetically engineered beings, who are perfect in every way, with manicured behaviors, and conformist attitudes, and if anything happens there is always Soma. This narrative is one of futuristic outlook on a rapidly evolving world and the authors own subjective fantastic analysis of one of it’s possible outcomes. The upheaval of a hyper-modern and industrial age, set betwixt an aristocratic backdrop of representative England, and the savage and brutal worlds of American and Iceland, for those that missed those references. While in The Doors of Perception, there is a personal account of a self-induced experience with the alkaloid mescaline, and a kind of social commentary of drugs, medicine, social politics, and a slew of interesting academic brain scratchers, it really gets you thinking in a transcendental way. But I think Island is the most approachable so far I have read, for someone who is looking for a lighter work with a higher spiritual inclination. It is a book that was relevant then, and I would say is even more so important to read today, and its subject matters are something growing in concern for us all. The revolving themes of colonization, industrialization, modernism, teaching, drug use (in an atavistic religious way), community forming, human behavior, consciousness and a few other metaphysical concepts that are intersticed through the grain of this work.
The subjects are part of the everyday life of the people of Pala, a small island in the tropics, with a stable population of essentially Indo-Europeans, tuned onto Mahayana Buddhism, self-sustainability, and radical schooling. This is a dart on the bulls-eye for all those out there who are interested in seeing the precepts in potentia, or theorizing and observing how they can function in a small population, so I would recommend it not only to people like permaculturalists, environmentalist country folk, psychedelic thinkers and activists, but also vastly different personalities like city planners, politicians, and government officials, though for that sake, I don’t really have the latter in my friend circle.

Will Farnaby is washed ashore this island, and gradually starts to meet the ‘indigenous’ people there, and it is through him and his questions, juxtaposed through a ‘your way and our way’ perspective, that is of Pala vs. the West/America. The main character comes with his problems, nervosas, and issues, and gradually learns, through the brilliant mind of Huxley’s fictional residents, what a healthy population looks like, how it works, and what to be aware of. That is a key thing throughout the book, awareness, and is quite humoristic in the way it is passed across. The people of Pala came from abroad, but chose to settle here, until they were reformed, and started to practice a kind of spiritually enlightened branch of Buddhism. There are these religious tenets stuck in through the daily life and text of this book that even I found highly intriguing from a heathen perspective because it is not overbearing or dogmatic in any way. The island has something they call mutual adoption clubs, which is a practice that most indigenous tribes of the Amazon, Africa and the rest of South America instilled in the upbringing of their offspring. Image result for huxley islandBasically these were larger tribal families, and one child had several mothers, several fathers, and many siblings, so there  was a preservation of diversity of care, intelligence, teaching, and discipline. This was one of the main teaching points I thought, and represents how far modern families have diverged from this healthy paradigm, where now the nuclear family, usually 2 parents, 2 children of opposite sex, all living in the same house until the children reach full maturity, which ironically takes about 18-20 years in these conditions, and sometimes embarrassingly longer. The youth are stifled from lack of attention, integration with society, and a diminished form of love when being raised, and family socialism becomes a kind of limitation for interaction with the world, the neighbors and even stagnates by itself in the household, because of having no outlet for problem venting. So the nuclear family vs. the mutual adoption society is a keen thing that is addressed, but in a novel sentimental way. Huxley has a way of conveyance that opens empathy, sympathy, and mutual understanding.

Another rather taboo confluence of thoughts that runs through the book is the use of indigenous drugs for conscious altering experiences. Not for the sake of pure hedonism and leisure, but as medicine. This is the distinguished difference here. Today we smoke weed for leisure, at least the majority, for thrills, for sexual stamina, and sometimes there is nothing wrong with this, but the medicinal value is often disregarded or forgotten and instead the commercialism of product reigns in its place. The people of Pala use something they call the moksha-medicine, which early in the book they refer to the biology of, in what I took to be the Amanita, even describing it as red, but then later talking about the effects, and considering the climate and ecology they exist in, I am rather convinced it may be Psilocybin but it is hard to say, as also Asian shamans have traditionally used the Muscaria, and not the latter. I would have to consult Huxley’s ghost for that, but it’s Image result for mynah birdbeside the important point, and would be missing the meal offered here. The Palanese use this medicine, and encourage to youth to take it as a rite of passage, after they have undergone an ordeal. So it is shamanic in nature. Their reasoning is, the moksha can take one to vistas of the luminous bliss and light, to realms that are beyond the mundane, the ordinary, and profane, while their spiritual practices, like anger management, and all the Yogas of being they persuade are ways to maintain the perpetual course taken to preserve the closeness of that state. In the end, Will Farnaby himself takes the moksha medicine, and is elaborated through a psychedelic experience that would make McKenna blush, and Lovecraft grin. The advocacy of this drug, and their philosophical stance of control over consumption should be a model for this bizarre paradigm most of the developed world, especially first world, still tries to impart with the war on drugs. They are only drugs, because their healing and evolutionary properties are undermined, and used improperly.

Their use of Yogas I highly admire, as well from Aldous’ view essentially, exudes a more subtle truth of the real Yoga. Something I was turned off of for a couple years, after heavy intensive practice in my early-twenties because of the sheer commercialization, profit mongering, and pseudo-spirituality that surrounded that scene. I just didn’t want to be part of it. But the Palanese practice a form of personalized and subjective yoga that I think is way more important, one that goes to the roots. Of ‘yoking’ with the intentional actions of their body, and will, thus building soul. It really just has a lot to do with awareness of everyday passing ons, and proper behavior. There are no deep secrets in this yoga, which I also practice every day in my own lifestyle, even this very minute. So there are things like the yoga of love making, the yoga of not doing, the yoga of remembering, the yoga of speaking, and every other niche sympathetic, and mechanical function we have as humans. This is part of the Palanese teaching, as well as a unique kind of stress management. Using energy arising from possibly violent tendencies and turning them towards productive means. They have a whole group who just chop wood, or scale cliffs, or stamp their feet in a bizarre dance form. They cultivate skepticism in their youth, and teaching them all the practical sciences when they are young, the hard stuff first, which I think is really radical. The children grow up to actually appreciate the relative simplicity of surviving, and thriving through responsibility and change. They have an interesting experiment that involves checking their sons/daughters for hypnotic tendencies, because they can then be taught to defend themselves against future commanders, authority, outsiders, religious fanatics and militants, into exploiting them.
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Pala is a picture of an organic community that has not been developed, they have no wars, no plantations or factories, no harbor for possible invasion, no self-defeatist and dogmatic religions, or surplus, no need to import or export. They are their own microcosm, where the individual is as sovereign as the whole. I would be interested to know if the general plot of the Western man who visits a native population, still in touch with their spiritual heritage and animistic lifestyle, using entheogens and cut off from the world mimics Ernst Junger’s work A visit to Godenholm? If anyone has read it in German or the English translation, I would love to hear about it. Also if anyone might recommend another gem in Huxley’s line up, because he has quite the stack of literature he was written, I am really getting to be absorbed by his mind. Their are many take-aways from this one, insights into our certain cultural crisis’, personal sentiments, empathy of characters in sometimes dark ways, and an intriguing eye into thinking you are actually reading a real anthropological account of a lost people, which I love.

Flying Saucers: A Modern Myth of Things Seen in the Sky: review

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Believe it or not, Jung wrote a book on UFO’s and it took me a couple years to find it, but I finally tracked down a copy here in the Newfoundland University library, to which I left quite happily with. It’s a short book, only 145 pages with the epilogue but it is a worthwhile tome, and reads like a full book. There are copious mythological and archetypal references in here and a full dose of symbolical language, that I found I had to read several times over before getting a grasp on it. It is one of these books that require its readers to be familiar with several others of Jung’s work before really diving in, and is worth its weight for any scholar or amateur researcher to pick it up.

The first chapter which I found most useful and helpful is ‘UFOS in rumors’, which Jung in his traditional verbose language dives into the psychological and analytical nature of these flying saucers, touching on the links to a post-war collective consciousness, but also digs into random anomalies like the diversity and variance of how these UFO’s have been experienced through time at different geographies, set and settings, through those both with former knowledge of them, and without. Jung talks about how the rumor mills came to take an empirical existence in the form of these archetypal flying saucers, and why they mean what they mean to us even today. Then he goes on to talk about the early radar stations that were set up, the influence of George Orwell, and the involvement with military aircraft sites in building up the mythos of the UFO. I found all this information intriguing, and easy enough to believe. The psychic aspect he postulates is quite convincing, and though he was not going out to prove or disprove anything, he offers the clearest window into the phenomena the world had at the time in the late 1950’s. So this was quite novel, written over 5 centuries ago, and really captured people’s imagination. Jung goes into all the metaphysical reasons why they can and should exist, in his sort of psycho-analytical praxis, as if these flying saucers were part of a universal language of emblematic symbols, belonging to humankind, which they actually are.

The second part is about UFO’s in dreams, and for it’s worth is a study not only of the dream evidence of flying saucers and everything that comes with it, like little men, voices, sexual imagery, and strange lights, but also a mine of symbolic figures, historical reference, psychology, cultural mythology, and mathematical genius. A lot of it went over my head, no joke intended, as my insight and knowledge of all the worlds different archetypal pantheon of gods, deities, religions, metaphysics and such is shallow compared to anyone like Jung, and he really goes deep with it, to the point of it seeming like fantastical association. After the dream, he goes into the commentary, where the big words and references come in, and where the reader needs to know about his other works; to which I would suggest Man & His Symbols, his Black Books a.k.a. Dream books, and perhaps the Red Book. So he relates the dreams through these filters of information of what they represent. For this part I find even reading the dreams alone, stimulating in a more sensual, imaginative way. Some of the interpretations are quite bizarre

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The third part looks at some UFO’s in paintings at the time, and talks about the artwork which is a nice part if you are artistically inclined, they are what I would call psychedelic paintings, for the way in which they were painted. Printed here in black and white, but still capturing the imagination in very obscure and provocative ways. The intentions behind the paintings are very peculiar and worthwhile to read if you have interest in art history.

The fourth part is the previous history of the UFO phenomenon and looks back at some documents, literature and engravings that hint at things that relate to UFO’s though they may not have been called such at the time. Some of these are from well known medieval works, and I found this to be kind of a testament that this is not some just a science fiction illusion of the 21st century but something as well our ancestors experienced, and preserved the memory of through writing about it, or making emblematic art directly inspired by the experience. These engravings and representations of the UFO come from an age that to us seems less learned, but actually it was a time in which things like flying saucers were observed without the same criticism we see today.

The last part before the epilogue is about the flying saucers in a non-psychological light. So if there is any physical evidence, than what are they? Jung kind of ask a lot of probing questions and leaves it open ended. I will probably give sections of this book a re-read, because it is fascinating, and I know there are a lot of hidden gems of information in there. The epilogue is about another experience, by someone named Orfeo Angelucci, written in rather a prosaic style, I don’t know if it was the mood I was in, but this account really felt involving, and made me think of a couple scenes from Fantastic Planet, for it’s strangeness, contact with the Other, and then the kind of psychedelic come down into mundane humane routine, and talks about Orfeo’s re-experiencing of contact, and willingness to talk about it, for which he is ridiculed of course. Jung’s work also forced me to think about my experience with some kind of ‘unidentified flying object’ that I saw over a jungle in Yucatan, to whom I haven’t really related to as a story to anyone outside the country, for it is a rather local phenomena.

The value of this book I think is underrated, and has a lot of relevance for the whole conspiracy theory movement of today in which to understand it by. This is a tool for those seeking to settle with the unknown, and as Jung calls it, the collective union with the subconscious into a self that is whole.

The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt’s New World review

Before reading this part biographical, part memoir and historical account of Humboldt’s life and journeys in South America, Russia and Venezuela, I can honestly admit I did not know the character. A man well before other naturalist writers, like Muir, Thoreau, Darwin, & Haeckel. His life works came to inject a current of holistic understanding into nature’s complex biography. This tome written by Andrea Wulf, literates Humboldt’s well, not so humble beginnings, he was born into an aristocratic family, though his mother and father always expected more from him. For years they tried to shape him on the potting wheel of the latest moral ideals of that time. There is a stress on the political climate of Humboldt’s childhood right through his coming of age, and later years of life. There are descriptions of him and his brother, who seemed to long for entirely different ideals in life, one entirely reserved on his studies of language and scholarly things, and one on completely immersion in nature. This is an interesting kind of ‘twin paradox’, though the brothers were not twins, but are archetypal of the diversity of even closest relatives and the mystique of what fate becomes a man, regardless of birthplace, parental heritage, or cultural surroundings. It actually reminds me somewhat of the split in persona between myself and my own brother, one (the author of this journal) a wanderer, feral, and extrovertive with the right people and places, the other, rather sedentary, domesticated and reserved. After this early smoke clears and goes through Humbdolts desires to travel, he eventually finds a place on a ship and makes a journey through Venezuela and the Americas of the new world.

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What follows are sweeping prosaic accounts of his personal steps in a time before plane travel, and mass tourism. I find these narratives of old most interesting for their pioneering value, the adventures in the jungle were not catered and mapped out along distinguished tourist routes like what modern day Latin and Central America. Those who visited these parts of the world were left to their own devices, brought in their own maps, or made them by hand, carried several scientific instruments, a camera was usually not one of them, made their own rations and food supplies, and relied on biological and botanical knowledge to read the landscapes they now inhabited. These were not just quick trips into the Amazon or the Andes for bragging rites, a few selfies and a return to the hotel. Humboldt met some of the Indigenous people and hired one or two of them along the way for assistance, but his journeys lasted longer than a year, in which he was collecting specimens, taking measurements, making sketches and diagrams, writing journals and hypothesis, analyzing natural phenomena, sending letters, pressing plants, and gathering knowledge from locals. These were exhaustive journeys.

The book follows his beautiful adventures in the Andes, and traces his observations on deforestation, man’s effect on nature, and slavery. But the main vein of his travels focus on the new insights he brings to the ontology of nature, his precious observations, and poetical way of narrating his account. He eventually meets Thomas Jefferson, and lives like his right hand man before returning back to Europe, stocked with new specimens, collections, books filled with data, and so forth. There is melancholy in his new life, as he drifts between London, Paris, and Berlin quite often, teaching lectures, classes, meeting with scientists and naturalists, and trying to plan another trip to India. Though his fame grows as he lives royally under honor of the King, but he doesn’t enjoy being back in Europe. There is an emphatic strain here I can relate to as he comes back from his epic adventures into the highly modernized and progressive Europe which is at war at the time. He feels a loss of authenticity and wonderment in his life. Something felt by almost all travelers I know after going home from a long time away in the world into foreign landscapes and cultures.

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After years of trying to convince a branch of the Indian government to allow him to travel there, he is still not permitted. But over thirty years later he finally is able to forge eastwards to undetake scientific research on geology and mining, which he uses an an excuse to wander through Russia, Mongolia and the China border of his own accord. The most important aspects of this book are his observations of the patterns of nature, such as what he observed at a river in Russia, where the plants on one bank are entirely different from the other, this posed a new theory of the geographical movement of different species across the land. And not only this but many of his thoughts were quite radical and praised at the time, the world beyond Europe was so exotic to the white man. Some things that are today common knowledge also took root in Humboldt’s ideas, like his Naturegemalde picture which showed the regions, lattitudes, and longitudes of plant and arboreal distribution, using a mountain as an emblem to show this and later compared his findings to studies in Europe and Russia.

After the portions about Humboldt, there are small sectionsImage result for alexander humboldt journey about other naturalist writers who came to know a kind of solitary fame, namely Darwin, Bonpland, Thoreau and Muir. There are passages from their books and journeys, all tying back to relations with Humboldt. For he built the skeleton which the others fleshed out in their own way. It is a pretty involving book and hard to put down, there are copious new ideas, and some historical views into the social situation at that time, so it serves for anthropological interest of me as well. I don’t think I am really giving justice to the near 350 pages of this work, but I found the same pleasure reading it, and it has lead me to his personal works which I may come to enjoy later.

Grassroots Remediation


Sometimes I think it’s me that’s crazy, until that is, I am in the company of those who remember… Those we call the tribe or the community, those working from the bottom up, out of the soil and growing to the high reaches of organic life building. Sometimes I wander as a man estranged, almost alien to the rest of the country, the wider modern world, and an ocean of questions pour through my mind, where am I? how did I get here? where am I going? what am I doing? The same mulling thoughts that drive my every day.

For the latter part of my life, from my late teenage years until now in my mid-twenties, I have always adopted a rather acquainted and old fashioned nature, especially when it comes to my work in the world, and my involvement with our fellow species, both human and fauna alike. I often define true ‘work’ to my friends as a voluntary involvement with a creative output that outlives even oneself, like a higher valued praxis of labor or service to the often altruistic and dynamic function of a collective project, directed towards an aim of success. I see this true work as something that by it’s nature is loved to be done for the sake of the reward and importance it gives and holds, where as the modern day workforce is mostly revolving around survivalism. Not the Darwinian kind of fitness for survival, although that has its use, but work as a means for so called ‘surviving’, which I actually use lightly as a means to; pay bills, rent, insurance, groceries, cell phone, habits, etc. None of these actually truly integral to life itself, and usually usher forth the supply of img_1137invented jobs, that are a dead end road, for no expanding purpose other than the profit of a company or to further an agenda that ultimately harms the maker. Since I was sixteen and found my first job selling pumpkins on a street corner in one of Canada’s busiest cities, I have never ventured to far into the world of several tier degree, university scholar level, academic, ‘professional’ workforce. Blatantly because I find this field so incredibly boring, and always leaves me in the same position, combing my whiskers in a rat race, trying to win out against everyone else for who has the most attractive resume, that never gets read, and losing out against someone with a piece of paper that I don’t have. The irks I have with this kind of system, should be evident but I will write a few reasons I don’t see this as a fluent, practical and efficient way of working in the world.

For the past 4 years, I have not used a resume to get a job, and it’s not something I believe in. I see the merit of grassroots work based on personal reputation, codes of honor, representational experience, and personal confrontation. I have traveled and worked my way onto small and large scale farms throughout U.S., Europe, Mexico, the British Isles, Scandinavia and Canada, into the heart of communities, the forestry commissions of Scotland & England, linking with activist groups, gilds, and indigenous peoples, all without a single piece of paper. Nothing more than a few exchanged electronic letters, references of character, photographic documentary of past work, relevant knowledge and experience, and personal encounters. Some of this partnership was in Mexico, I joined the Lemurian Embassy in southern Yucatan, after an invitation from it’s ambassador tumblr_nx3dynmdlq1s5roa8o1_500Guillermo. Some of my work here was to work with those fellow volunteers to build a spiritual community that revived old Mayan heritage and tradition, and used the grassroots archetype to kickstart new growth and innovative systems of ideas into a functional retreat, wildlife refuge, and spiritual nexus of this community ethic. A beautiful work I must say even in my short time here, I did promise to return some day, and continue where I left off. Actually all of my work in Mexico involved traditional, communal, and service oriented roles, from picking coffee in the cloud forest on a family plantation, to beekeeping in the Oaxacan mountains with a collective of young students and veterinarian, to co-running  a hostel from the 60’s on a pacific beach and renovating an earthship in Tepoztlan. There is a bloodline of continuity that has run through my work, and I can say the majority of my work I have not received a single dollar, euro, kroner or peso for, though I have kept the hospitality and humble company of farmers of the new and old world, entrepreneurs, small Nordic families, lone wolves, and spiritual charities. I have fond memories of every ‘job’ that has kept me in my later years, something I can not admit from my days working in a factory, mindlessly on a production line, a-socially awkward because of the language difference with the employed immigrants, and feeling greatly unfulfilled with my time.

This brings me back to my window, staring out again at maritime Canada, after a trip through Scandinavia. The myth of Canada’s working nation, bound up in old country tunes, museum plaques, fisherman’s tales, and pure romanticism is almost non-existent anymore. Returning back to old Canada, stationed out of St. John’s, I looked forward to what I might find, on the docks, and in the field, in the country, or on the fringes of the city. There is this outsider view of Canada, and even still to some of it’s residents, that we are all farmers, fishermen, miners, lumberjacks, and stevedores. Well, this is partially true, only I don’t see the individual character within that list. No longer do I find it possible to Image result for stevedoring old newjump on a ship, and prove your worth at hauling fish, or to merely show your prowess with an axe and timber-man skills, and certainly there are no modestly dressed chaps hauling barrels of whiskey, barley, and sugar onto skippers and schooners at your local wharf. Everything has become industrialized, mechanized, people replaced for machines, or they are sitting behind one pushing all the controls. Talking to the local fisherman here in St. John’s I was gloomily reminded of the ebb of small scale fishing because of the influx of commercial trawling, asian offshore fisheries, pollution, governmental regulations, costs, large scale harvesting, and so forth. Social and environmental factors have immensely influenced the way people make a living. The grief of those whose father may have taught them how to fish in deep ocean waters, down rivers and silent lakes now need endless permits, fees, certificates, training, and constantly updated gear to even pull their dinner out of the sea. The farmers words reek with the same depressing customs on quotas Image result for milkman picturefor production, illegal to sell raw produce or milk, code lists for barn building and infrastructure, expensive machinery, competition with big agricultural, and mono-cultural farms. Wherever I go in the so called ‘first world’, there is a heavy hand, trying to control the ins and out of societies breath. This myth of Canada’s working nation, the jobs that built our country; the railroad, fishing, hunting, mining, stevedoring, lumberjacks, farming, and building are hardly recognizable as trade skills, or resemble the grassroots ethics they first operated on. Why is this? Because there are too many people, and the public service sector has replaced all ‘real’ work. Now instead of growing up learning to build traditional log houses for their families, fully qualified men will take a job in an office, or work in city construction instead, and instead of midwifery or child care for the women, they will bartend or takes their clothes off for a living. A lot turn to drugs, because there is money there, and more and more people will sacrifice their soul just to get by. There is a false notion of abundance of work, and there will only be fewer of them as we get more industrial and ‘futuristic’.

All real skills from the trades are becoming lost, or replaced with automation, and everyone wants formal proof to even get anywhere in the once traditional work field. That is, a lifelong skill taught down from the fathers and mothers to their offspring to carry the custom to the next generation. The youth today don’t want to work hard, or even work ‘out’, by that I mean, doing practical field and trade jobs. They choose static, low pay barrista jobs as an excuse for ‘community involvement’. There is a kind of illusion and romance that go together for people like me seeking to merely ‘make a living’ in this modern world. I do not have any degree, or scholarship, no formally recognized documentation of training or certification in a field, no resume or cv, nor do I think it takes a computer to manage a farm, or four years training to harvest a crop. 1186426_1396281925-9118_multiI often find the irony when someone asks what my ‘highest level of education’ is, and they expect a grade or institution where I last studied. I usually answer with saying my education is from life. From real world experience and first hand knowledge. It is not about theory, and potential. What I do have is a range of stories from my travels, of what I have learned, because I have also failed, and learned more directly then. And of witness first hand the variety of methods different cultures use towards working on the same fundamental basics; food provision, shelter building, community involvement, social services, etc. I have the skills to show that I know exactly what I am doing when I am doing it, and if I don’t then I listen and watch someone who does.

Coming back to the Grassroots movement. The experience is becoming harder and harder to actualize, with increasing rules and a rapidly changing economy, where money is the new God, and it is worshiped at the peril of social unity, and quality of life. Attempts have been made, through outlets like ‘kickstarter’ or ‘indiegogo’ to create a sense of communal effort on a project but I honestly don’t see how these are actually functioning in the same way as an organic and cohesive community would in real life. Usually it is the wealthier part of society who don’t have the initiative to actually get involved in such a project who will donate their funds, and feel the comfiness believing they are involved with something heroic, without doing the work of course. And those without the money, the modern peasant class as I sometimes talk about are those who have the skills and the perspicacity of accomplishing it, but lack the funds. I also see a lot of fakes on here just pushing a product or idea of something that doesn’t always come out to fruition the way it was promised. It promotes a quasi-do it together aesthetic, but in reality, there is no dynamic or tribal like connection with those who support it.

People are scared of the sacred, indeed they fear to live, and those who try to preserve or retain a sort of atavistic lifeway into the sphere of now, are looked at as hermetic, outcasts, dysfunctional, and ultimately ignored. But in reality, these are the people building bridges between two cliffs, while others would rather try to jump across, always on the route of the silver bullet. They want to build a world but they don’t want to do the work on the details.

“God told me one time, nobody can bother you if you don’t open the door to let him in. A wise man never reveals his wisdom. And for what purpose other than money does most people exist. And once I don’t want the money, than those people don’t exist. They’re only existing as much as you can buy and sell them. They’re a commodity. And then you say, I’d like to breathe some soul back into your existence. So I have to pretend like I’m from another planet.”

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Does good old fashioned hard and honest work even exist anymore? Instead of waitressing, computer programming, and hotel servicing, why don’t we have more jobs focused on bio-remediation? roadside cleanup? habitat restoration? sustainable eco-housing projects? or permaculture farming? You don’t need a degree to pick up trash, and yet there are no opportunities to yet make a living for cleaning up the earth, getting people off the streets, and supplying healthy organic food, there is constant struggle, and you are not supporting yourself off this work, this is where I think there should be change.

The practice of grassroots bioremediation and regenerative earth work not only involves detoxifying and revitalizing the land by working with plants, mushrooms and micro-organisms; it must also include the powerful work of decolonization that seeks to deeply repair and enliven both the ecosystems and the communities that support thriving natural systems.”~Leila Darwish

All of the work in agriculture, forestry, fishing, and the majority of animal husbandry or sciences like botany and ecology is dying out with the older generations, and the younger folks are becoming estranged and no longer interested with the work their grandfathers and grandmothers did. This epoch must witness a resurgence, starting with your own individual work that cuts to the core of what this world actually needs, not wants, with the division of labor to more appropriate and necessary roles. I know personally from the stories of my elders, of what kind of life they had even five or six decades ago.With the division of labor to more appropriate and necessary roles. Just two generations back, my grandfather was cutting blocks of ice in the Quebec valley, then hauling it 3 hours through snow fields to trade for pelts, my family milked their animals, knit their clothes, cut all their own wood, hunted, fished, and lived in the bush. Today, these people are called ‘hard natured’, but are they really? These are the most humble persons I have met in my existence. We will certainly wither if these grassroots ethics of work of the organic community fails to reach the heights of importance that our world calls for, and those who hear the call to get involved. This is the only way we will thrive, but what do I know?

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Organic Lifestyles for Travelers

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The term organic has become somewhat of a metaphor these days, taken under wing of the 21st century, the label of organic is used push a brand than a qualitative descriptive noun. Eating organic is probably the most addictive of the consumer side of this lifestyle, that is if you can read between the lines. But beyond the certified organic hemp milk, ‘fair’ trade cocoa, and rare amazonian nut crops that you may find in your health food store, there is more to the organic way of life. It takes a bit of universal knowledge, interest in biology and botany, intrigue into ecological issues, studies of anthropology, product awareness, conscious negation of modernism, disciplined use of substances, and well, I guess you really need to cultivate this type of lifestyle like a farm, with all aspects of your existence working coherently and balanced towards a sort of unified holistic machine, an organic primordial force, rather, that is, You in your fullest potential.

Beyond the diet, the hygiene, and yoga classes, there are deeper ways to go into a sustainable and ‘organic’ lifestyle. Everyone has a hygiene ritual of some kind, but some let it become habitual, then sporadic, then neglected, then not at all. If you have ever tried to monitor your hygiene, speaking from a travelers point of view, it is a tricky thing when on the move. The water you are drinking and showering in, the air you are breathing, what you are putting on, and in, or around your body, as in scent, are all factors to your personal makeup.Also think of all the plastic accessories you might be using on your body, like your toothbrush, comb, hairbrush, and the fire retardant chemicals and plastics in your clothing. As a traveler, you pass through the urban megalopolis of the worlds cities, staying in hostels, showering in chlorinated water, drinking the same, cooking on dishware that has been washed in chemicals, sleeping on bed sheets and pillows that have collected the essences of thousands before you, on spring filled mattresses, and probably compromising your diet to eat the continental breakfasts of sausage and battery cage eggs, or buying some inconvenient superstore foods. This is the average European or British hostel. There is an illusion of cleanliness, abundance and proper facilities. The instant resources in every building are attractive, until you start to question. I won’t shy from saying I have spent my own nights in hostels on last resort, but I never stay longer than a couple sunrises, and I always pack in my food, and quick out of the crowded rooms.

At all costs, I am not a tourist, so I prefer to seek out the locals in the countryside, with access to clean well water, fresh breathing air carrying scents of woods, plants, and livestock. Health to me is sacred, and I don’t care if I pay 5 euros for something that would cost me 2 for the heavily processed version on sale. And I would rather walk 5 km for a couple pints of free range goats milk than buy the vitamin-d deficient pasteurized variety in a store. When I look at the labels of modern industrial food, I see to myself, this is not even food. If you took all the individual ingredients of modern food for example, and you imagine them separated on a table, sometimes over 20 items of unnatural flavors, preservatives, sulphites (poisonous), colors, starches, sugar and derivatives of sugar, modified milk, acids, salt, chemicals, syrups, and pasteurization of perfectly nutrient animal products, then you mix it together, this is no longer even recognizable as food. Why can’t something just be essentially what it is, instead of long lists of unpronounceable ingredients. So people are buying these, and because the label on the front is lying to them on what the label on the back says, they are deceived, thinking, it is all one and the same, consciously neglecting their health for a sale, cutting the minutes off their life, and actively killing themselves by depositing these things in their body. Then throwing away a lot of packing. I think individuals just become apathetic and no longer regard their health as vital, so sometimes it is not a question that they know what they are eating, but rather, they have lost the care. This is when it is important to educate. Many people seek a kind of ‘alternative’ source for food when they want to eat clean, and this can be useful, but I don’t like this term. The alter-native denotes something that would have pertained to our indigenous ancestors and is no longer used, an alter native method is proposed, instead I like to think in terms of original sourcing. The ur-product that one always has to start out with, and what is readily available for nature. Nature is the greatest health food store, medical cabinet, supermarket, and pharmacy on earth, if you know how to benefit from it.

It is of extreme importance to me when I img_2307travel to forage, whenever the opportunity provides, even in central Europe where there is limited species available for foraging, you can find abundance. I have been able to find tens of species of berries and wild fruits, leaves, and even roadkill meat some times. This is something I hold belief in, that one should not waste perfectly good life. Not by consuming less than nutrient food, or by buying meat. This is why I have only collected, grew, or traded or caught my meat in the last 4 years, though I have found vegetarianism suitable to a routine diet, in reality and biologically, I am an omnivore. I will eat a dead pheasant, deer, or squirrel found on the roadside if not bloated and still fresh, I think there is no disposition in relating this to an organic lifestyle, and I think there should be no taboo surrounding this in the mass population. It is wild, and free meat, so travelers take note, this is some of the finest dining you can get. Cooked over a fire, at your camp, I have even found fish brought up from the lake shallows by gulls and other seabirds, then dropped on rocks, salmon still with the eyes dark, barely hours old, that ended up on my iron skillet. I see the importance of foraging as well for the connection it brings to our most primordial nature. This form of organic living is a proponent I want to propel into anyone reading this. I have yet to be on a hunt, but now in Newfoundland island, I have prospects out for the annual moose hunt, which I hope to procure some high quality proteins for the autumn, though I may have to start small first, the odd squirrel maybe. Hunting is the natural progression of foraging I think, and is not a question of morality or sympathy, but empathy and understanding of ecology.

Beyond food and what I put in my body, I try to advocate for those seeking a simpler and more natural existence, a life without plastic. Yes, this laptop I write on has plastic elements, and I listen to music on a plastic ipod which is a decade old, but I have chosen deliberately to live a life almost completely devoid of plastic. I am always looking for better, more sustainable and reusable products. I have even been investing into a laptop from Africa, running completely off solar energy. From the hygiene products I use made from wood and bamboo, to the surfaces I sleep on and in, a down filled sleeping bag, clothes made from hemp, pure cotton, wool and tweed, my tools and instruments, footwear and even the rucksack I carry everything with on my world travels, built from waxed sail canvas. It is easy to acquire gear and not think about these things, like cheap tenting equipment, books, clothes, and self care items. Often I have rather spent the time building a temporary shelter or sleeping out in the open with just some warm wool sweaters and a goathair blankets under shelter of some broadleaf trees when on the road, for want of not carrying around a plastic house. The modern tents are manufactured with petro-chemicals, polyplastics, fire retardants, dyes, and inorganic fabrics, that are not only claustrophobic, but also carcinogenic to breathing, not biodegradable, not aesthetically pleasing, and stressful to the movements of the person within. A plastic free lifestyle is closer than you think but you have to start from almost nothing. Strip down, naked, and carefully select everything that could be useful for a traveling lifestyle, then work at refining your stock, until everything you own actually brings you joy, rather than just ephemeral use. website is a source I found out later, but seems a pretty good start.

Besides being a traveler, I am a farmer, so the fusion of nomadism and agriculture is my main means of survival, and thriving in this world. I find it harder and harder, in the modernized and industrial ‘first world’ countries like those of Northern Europe, Canada, U.S. and the British Isles, but also in the Mediterranean, the prospects of finding good img_1757fertile land. And by that I mean, soil that has not been deprived, and manipulated to only grow a few select crops in the millions, or diverse grasslands that have not been mowed down and seeded with one type of greenery for the specific grazing of one variety of livestock. I wish it were not this way, and I don’t feel any pride saying even my home country is hugely guilty of this. With the loss of cultural tradition, subsistence small scale farming, the shifting of age demographic to older generation groups, and the rise of big-ag. there is increasing difficulty to find work, not only for me, but other young travelers I meet wanting to get back to the land. I have been stuck volunteering for the bulk majority of my work, I would say 8 out of 12 months of the year is spent working for free. Romantic and altruistic maybe, but it is because I can not even find a meager living with a sustaining wage on any farm that uses permaculture principles, multi species grazing, diversity of crops, variety of landscape, traditional slow paced practice, hand tool ethics, and manual labor. People are being replaced my john deere tractors, sorting machines, auto-tillers, and massive equipment, and the people who run them are pressing all the levers and buttons to make it all go. Modern farmers aren’t really working hard, or efficient, they are just getting more done because they have more money behind it, and they still have time to live completely modern lives, watch the news, drive gas guzzling trucks, and live in futuristic houses. To add to this, I do hitchhike often, but I have never owned a care, and I advocate highly for riding bicycles, rollerblading or just walking, it is our bipedal feature after all, it would be embarrassing if people forgot how to do it and had to start learning the basics of walking in survivalist workshops. Last week I called a farmer on another part of this island, known for its prestigious farm heritage and pioneering. I was answered by an old man, who upon hearing that I was a traveler looking for work, looked past all my experience with old world breed animals, diversity of gardening experience, self style work ethic, and huge curriculum of experience, and exclaimed his disinterest in even greeting me. This used to be the running creed. Young people are now moving away from life on the land and forced into city lives, working barista jobs at starbucks, or marketing. These dead end routines do not conform to an organic lifestyles, and I see no honor or merit in them. Thus I would continue to urge those dirt worshiping feral men and woman to continue to push towards the farming life, there is untold beauty in it’s embrace and one that I can wholly backup.

With work, hygiene, and diet covered, you can think about your housing, most of the population live in cheap housing. Modern carbon copy houses, insulated with fiberglass which carries asbetos, surrounding by brick, or cinder block walls, chemically treated wood, carcinogenic painted rooms, plasticized furniture, gypsum rock which often has hidden black molds, bacteria carrying carpets, and grimy cooking, eating and sleeping surfaces. All for the sake of ‘public safety’, zoning permits, codes and governmental rules. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out when you spend a few nights in a drafty cabin in the woods, how much better your health will be even after 72 hours. You may get a draft of wind, the odd spider or insect, or even a drop of water through the roof once in a while, but the benefits of submersion in raw nature far exceeds the over-safe cocooning in element proof housing built into concrete wastelands. A week in the jungle even further proves this, you are not competing with unwanted destructive sounds like cars, and sirens, no walls of glass and steel outside your windows, in fact you don’t even have ‘windows’, just mesh screens to keep mosquitoes out, the air is not dead and stagnant inside, and there are plants growing just outside your door. I think the earthship movement is quite radical and worth its salt for how it’s adapting to climate change, and available ‘waste’ materials, to build homes. It is localized and skillful construction on mostly organic principles. Try moving into the wild, and just taking shelter in a natural setting, see how it affects your mental health, your sleep, your dreams. Analyze your thoughts during the day, do you have a long list of chores, or are you content with just sitting in your clearing or on your mountain peak and just being for awhile? There are no cafes nearby to get your morning brew, but fresh air, and unfiltered sunlight are adequate enough to wake you up, and get you going for the day. Then you can even think about bringing others into your company in a set and setting that are attractive to anyone.


Your impact on this world is not only for you, and to paraphrase McKenna for a second “we are the meaning of our ancestors lives”. Such a sentiment should be carried everyday, and I would extend to that, we are the progenitors of our descendants meaning. To follow an organic lifestyle, recognizing your health as sacred and uncompromising, your spirit as sovereign, your hygiene is the way you present yourself to the people around you, and yourself, your work is ethical and important beyond filling your ego and your bank account,  culture is not your friend to rap on McKenna again. You need to build your own. You can be unconsciously naive, and never grow, pleasantly idling in ignorance until your shell breaks from revelation, but then you have the responsibility to shift to consciously choosing, what and how you become, as you rapidly adapt to the changing ontology of this game of the fittest.