Gaia Community

compassion, collaboration & cooperation iN transistion

WE ARE a circumstance of NATURE 

                                                                     Leonardo da Vinci

There can be no better symbolic representation of the fact that we are

individually and collectively dependent on nature and, to that matter,

interdependent on and of  every relationship which exists in nature -

than the example of growing an alder tree from seed as a bonsai  

Over 95% of our body is water. To stay healthy we

have to drink good water. Our DNA is the same DNA

as the tree. The tree breathes what we exhale. When

the tree exhales we need what the tree exhales.

We have a common destiny with the tree.

                                                                              Floyd Red Crow Westerman

Man plants the seed - the alder tree grows - absorbing carbon

from the atmosphere - storing nitrogen in its root sacs -

exhaling oxygen - on which man's survival is predated -

just by adding water - and so the cycle of  LIFE continues 


The catkins of some alder species have a degree of edibility,[2] and may be rich in protein. Reported to have a bitter and unpleasant taste, they are more useful for survival purposes. The wood of certain alder species is often used to smoke various food items, especially salmon and other seafood.

Most of the pilings that form the foundation of Venice were made from alder trees.[3]

Alder bark contains the anti-inflammatory salicin, which is metabolized into salicylic acid in the body.[4] 

Native Americans used red alder bark (Alnus rubra) to treat poison oak, insect bites, and skin irritations. Blackfeet Indians used an infusion made from the bark of red alder to treat lymphatic disorders and tuberculosis. Recent clinical studies have verified that red alder contains betulin and lupeol, compounds shown to be effective against a variety of tumors.[5]

The inner bark of the alder, as well as red osier dogwood, or chokecherry, was also used by Native Americans in their smoking mixtures, known as kinnikinnick, to improve the taste of the bearberry leaf.[6]

Alder is illustrated in the coat of arms for the Austrian town of Grossarl.

Electric guitars, most notably the Fender Jazz BassFender Precision BassFender Stratocaster and Fender Telecaster, have been built with alder bodies since the 1950s. Alder is appreciated for its claimed tight and even balanced tone, especially when compared to mahogany, and has been adopted by many electric guitar manufacturers.

As a hardwood, alder is used in making furniture, cabinets, and other woodworking products. For example, in the television series Northern Exposure 1992 season 3 episode "Things Become Extinct", Native American Ira Wingfeather makes duck flutes out of Alder tree branches while Ed Chigliak films.

NO RESPECT for your environment - NO RESPECT for YOURSELF


Views: 298

Comment by Michael Grove on March 8, 2014 at 10:12

Well we're obviously already embedded in a complex web of

relationships, both with our own kind and with many entities very

different from us. How then is it that we don’t notice them, don’t

honour our relationships with the plants and animals and all

the other elemental presences (soils, rainclouds, rivers...) who

support and nourish us? It can only be because somehow we're

oblivious to that direct, unmediated layer of carnal exchange which

is always already going on - because we're oblivious to the bodily

level of our existence. It is my body that steadily drinks of the

oxygen breathed out by all the green and growing plants, and

my body that breathes out the carbon dioxide these plants

steadily draw upon in order to photosynthesise and flourish.

It is this body, this muscled flesh that rests in intimate relationship

with the tree-trunk I’m now sitting on. From walking barefoot in the

garden or wandering through all these arroyos, my toes are well

acquainted with the life and texture of the soil. But we don't live

our body's life anymore. We live a life of abstractions, of mental

cogitations massively influenced by all of the human-made 

artefacts and signals that surround us. We're incessantly reflecting

off of our own reflections. We have been taught NOT to trust our

senses, and our direct sensory experience. The senses, which are

our most instinctive animal access to the world - our eyes, our ears,

our tongue, our nostrils - these magic organs open us directly onto

the more-than-human field! Yet we’ve been taught not to trust any

of these powers; we're told that the senses lie, we're taught in

school that the senses are deceptive.


David Abram during an interview with Derrick Jensen  entitled ...                                            

Alliance for Wild Ethics || The Perceptual Implications of GAIA



Comment by Michael Grove on March 10, 2014 at 13:14


As it drifts, bumps into the slender leg of a great blue heron

staring intently through the rippled surface, then drifts on.

The heron raises one leg out of the water and replaces it,

a single step. As I watch I, too, am drawn into the spread

of silence. Slowly, a bank of cloud approaches, slipping its

bulged and billowing texture over the earth, folding the heron

and the alder trees and my gazing body into the depths  of a

vast breathing being, enfolding us all within a common flesh, a

common story now bursting with rain.

David Abram - The Spell of the Sensuous

Comment by Michael Grove on July 9, 2021 at 11:10

The Arctic and Antarctic ice-caps are melting very quickly, and water shortages and natural disasters are more common occurrences than at any time in recent history. The civilisations of many countries will be jeopardised and life as we know it severely disrupted. Almost all predictions of the likely rate of climate change have been based on estimates which professional observers in the real world NOW show are consistently underestimating the true rate of change.

As a global community we continue to be fixated by conventional 'green' ideas which we believe will help save our world. Lovelock argues that only Gaia theory, which he originated over forty years ago, can really help us understand the crisis fully. The root problem is that there are too many people and animals for the Earth to carry. And there is in fact only one possible procedure which might bring a permanent cure for climate change, but we are unlikely to adopt it.

'Our wish to continue business as usual will probably prevent us from saving ourselves' says Lovelock, so we must adapt as best we can and try to ensure that enough of us survive to allow a more capable species to evolve from us. There could hardly be a more important message for humankind. James Lovelock has been an active and accurate observer of the Earth environment since the 1960s and was the first to find CFCs and other gases accumulating in the air. His Gaia theory provides insight into climate change in the coming century.

This is his final warning.

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