Heartfelt thanks to my lovely friend and fellow travelling companion to revolutionary Egypt, Corina Bloom, for citing a section of Paul Hawken’s talk (given at the 2012 Bioneer’s Conference. The whole talk is deeply moving.  The material quoted starts about minute 14).
Hawking invites us to recognize and accept the wildness in us, in the natural world, and in doing so to commit again to our healing, our deepest purpose in being alive.

“From being outside, I learned this: no matter what you do to a creature, plant, forest, meadow, ocean, reef, wetland—whether you scrape it, cut it, burn it, poison it, or strip it—within a nanosecond of when the destruction ceases, all of life does one thing: it starts to regenerate…without exception.

We see wildness outside but not in ourselves. If we say wild, we think crazy or uncontrolled. But it doesn’t mean uncontrolled.  I mean wild as original, innate, authentic, instinctive, deep-rooted, sanguine, and fearless. The overwhelming array of industrial forces lined up against the living world—the pipelines, the mines, the pesticides, the pharmaceuticals, emissions, the trawlers, the Foxconns, the banks—favor uniformity, sameness, repetition, control, hierarchy, force, violence, oppression.

That is not wild. It is death.

Wild is exquisite. Wild is a life that is about benefiting all beings. Because that is what life does. In Janine Benyus’s famous words: “Life creates the conditions that are conducive to life.”

Wild is not crazy. Crazy is double-glazing the planet with the carboniferous era, and killing the oceans with carbonic acid; crazy is sterilizing our soils and then genetically manipulating our seeds to fix our stupidity; crazy is drone attacks on children and women in Afghanistan and Pakistan. This is not wild, it is psychotic. Psychosis is a severe mental disorder where thought and feelings are so impaired they have no relationship to external reality. Wild is the opposite. It is when our thoughts, feelings, and actions are exquisitely sensitive to our relationship to the living world.

Wild is why we dance, write, sing, protest, do permaculture and become slam poets. It is the feeling of our feet as the earth—our eyes and smiles as heaven—our hearts like headwaters—our breath the air. Not just citizens but denizens.”

Jill Schroder is the author of BECOMING: Journeying Toward Authenticity.  BECOMING is an invitation for self-reflection, and to mine our memorable moments for insights, meaning, andgrowth.  Check the website for a sample chapter, or see the reviews to get a flavor for the volume.  Follow me on Twitter, let’s be friends on Facebook :-)

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