Alternative Living

Challenging Scarcity

A Couple of weeks ago I joined Tim Vireo Keating on one of his city forages in Prospect Park, Brooklyn.

Tim leads regular events in New York highlighting the abundance that is all around us. His passion is for the wild edibles that nature delivers free to those ready to look and gather.

We didn’t need to look too far. As if to make the point we stopped just 10 yards inside the gate of the park. We found an impressive variety of common edible plants to be picked for free. Weeds to many of us these plants are packed with nutrients and can help to cleanse and detoxify the body. Venturing further into the park we picked and ate leaves straight from a Sasafrass tree, delish!

The Man Who Lived in a Tree

Years ago on the west coast of Africa I met a man who lived in a tree. It was a gorgeous majestic tree just back from the beach. He lived there with his cat and you could have dried your washing on his smile.

Sometimes I wonder if he’s still alive, beaming out at anyone who takes the time to go and see him, a glorious accompaniment to the African sun. I imagine him sitting high on a bow looking out onto a night sky of dazzling stars. He was as rich as any man I’ve met.

Yesterday in a traffic jam in wealthy suburbia I looked at the tight lips behind the tinted glass of shiny 4×4’s and late model status symbols and I longed for the sorted life of my African friend.

The simplicity of his lifestyle is the source of his security, there is little material he can loose and yet he has everything he needs. It was impossible not to smile sharing his understanding of real living.

Sitting in my car I felt very sad. Surely our carbon intensive lives will wreck the simple existence of people living natural lives. Clearly there was little happiness in that traffic jam, even in the tallest of the gleaming vehicles spewing out their greenhouse gases.

It’s time to reconnect with the true source of joy and security before we screw it up for everyone.

Smile you have everything you need!

Sometimes I wonder if he’s still alive, beaming out at anyone who takes the time to go and see him, a glorious accompaniment to the African sun. I imagine him sitting high on a bow looking out onto a night sky of dazzling stars. He was as rich as any man I’ve met.

Yesterday in a traffic jam in wealthy suburbia I looked at the tight lips behind the tinted glass of shiny 4×4’s and late model status symbols and I longed for the sophisticated life of my African friend.

The simplicity of his lifestyle is the source of his security, there is nothing he can loose and yet he has everything he needs. I smiled.

And then I felt very sad. Is it not our carbon intensive lives that will wreck the simple existence of people living natural lives? Clearly there was little happiness in that traffic jam, even in the tallest gleaming all wheel drive vehicles spewing out their greenhouse gases. It’s time to reconnect with the true source of joy and security before we screw it up for everyone.

Smile you have everything you need!