Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Day 1 US Soil- Jonah welcomes me to LA

Auckland - Opine on Sustainability, Consciousness, & Buddhism

Light mind Light Print
I have been in AKl the last 10 days, spending time with Ella; a dear friend, wise, kind and loving Buddhist eco warrior, and with myself and my experiences of the past 3 months.

I have been running each day, meditating, studying teachings of Lord Buddha and thinking about sustainability.
As this trip was an exploration of such it is suffice to say that as in much of the world many people in NZ are very much doing their part to at the least, lighten their footprint on the planet if not live according to a great and high standard of sustainability. Of course, there are many who give it all not a thought.
The environments I have been immersed in have been varied, with some places/people making a concerted effort to do certain 'acts of sustainability' - composting, vegan ism, not buying packaged products, even growing the majority of their food, collecting rain water etc. Then, there are people whose entire way of life is centered around sustainability and it is not even a thought or effort, it is encompassed in every action, interaction, and intention, from the garden to the kitchen to the toilet to the bedroom. This is in one aspect, Permaculture.

What I have concluded at this very moment is that although actions are important as well as key to helping the planet, they are not enough.

What is even more serious that we pay heed to, is our minds. Particularly our mind of desire. For Buddha, the "mind" refers to 'the entire spectrum of our inner experiences: thoughts, feelings, tendencies, personality traits, perceptions, intuitions, and dreams'.

Is it good for the planet to cut down on or cut out getting take out food stuff? Yes. Does it help heal the planet when we consciously conserve energy and resources? Of course. Could it potentially have a more lasting effect to pay attention to what it is in our mind that tells us we need it in the first place? I think so. To inquire into the part of mind that tells us we are too busy, too overworked and overtired to cook and take care of our self, or that it is just easier to get take-away.

It is just a thought really, but something I have felt strongly about over the course of this last week - that although our actions in the world can be highly un-sustainable, I believe that it is our consciousness and our mind states that are even more un-sustainable.

Until we truly deal with our minds (the entirety of our inner selves)- with our attachments, our over-inflated sense of desire, our self obsession, our unconscious eating/drinking/talking/screwing-we cannot remotely deal with the state of this planet in a way that will create permanent change for the good.
For clarity, I am not saying that our positive actions are meaningless, obviously they are not, but I do feel that it is our responsibility to attend to our personal awareness.

And so, I leave it at that, for now, and with a wish being sent that we all can make use of our unlimited potential for consciousness, for love, for compassion, and for service.
Light Mind Light print

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Last of my money

Last day

Bright amazing hilarious and loving Gen came down from Kerikeri and drove Belinda to Mt. Albert to see me the day I left. I am so blessed to have spent the day with you Gen to receive your light and love before my departure. Thank you!
and to boot she gave me the cassette tape of Boney M we have been listening to for 2 weeks!!
see this link if interested in becoming a fan :)

Auckland with Ella and Wynne

Mt. Albert, Auckland was my last stop. I stayed with the lovely sisters Ella and Wynne where each day I was inspired by sisterly love, teaching myself to cook Indian food, running up Mt. Albert each day to look at the panorama of Auckland environs, and Ella's Thangka paintings and Buddhist teachings.

Waipara Forest stop for snacks and 3 sisters

Tane Mahuta

Tane Mahuta is in the Waipoua Forest of Northland Region, New Zealand. Its age is unknown but is estimated to be between 1250 and 2500 years old. Its Māori name means "Lord of the Forest", from the name of a god in the Māori pantheon. We also saw the three sisters and hundreds of other amazing Kauri trees throughout the incredible forest of which contains three quarters of New Zealand's remaining Kauri trees.

Rawene- rainbows and my cabin necessities

Funny thing I noticed here is that everyone has an electric kettle and most houses are equipped with instant coffee and black tea. So, for nostalgia sake

The road from the back of the camper

The trip from Ahipara back to the beginning

So I made my way to the far north and now back down again to where I began in Kohukohu and Rawene. By Grace, I found a ride with Gail and Graham and joined them on the road to return to the first town I stayed in and worked at the Permaculture Garden. I suppose it is a time of nostalgia and a time for quiet before I return soon to New York.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Kauri Trees carbon printed at being aprx 49,000 yrs old

Agathis australis

Which way home?

Cape Rienga

Catch My Spirit

The Meeting/Leaping place

The Aupori Penninsula known to the Maori as Te Hika o te Ika (The tail of the fish), recalling the legend of Maui hauling up the North Island while in his canoe (the South Island) is the path to reach the very tip as well as a spiritual path to journey before releasing one's spirit into the Otherworlds. The most northerly point (Cape Rienga) is believed to be the "place of leaping", where spirits of the dead depart. They begin their journey by sliding down the roots of an 800 yr old pohutukawa into the ocean, they climb out again on Ohaua, the highest of the Three Kings Islands, to bid a final farewell before returning to their ancestors.

This is where I sit, at the place of leaping. Sending prayers to my loved ones and thanks to Aotearoa (NZ) for all the gifts I have received on this adventure.

almost there

sandboard location

The person on camera duty didn't get a shot so you will have to use your imagination to see me plummeting down the dunes and getting a mouth full of sand.

Te Paki

Heading off the beach after driving for an hour and a half we pull into the famous Te Paki sand dunes where we will embark on some sand boarding!!

90 mile beach (actually about 50 km beach)