On building an empower Social Ecosystem

I hope this Sunny Friday in February has been a great one for you.  The last Ecology of Prosperity support meeting was very powerful and helpful.  The theme of the evening was the importance developing your social ecosystem.  And there are two keys to that.  One main key is developing trust.  The second is all parties involved getting and giving value. It is those mutually beneficial trusting loyal long term relationships that are at the root of success, prosperity, health and happiness.  So how do we develop and strengthen those relationships.  Here are a few suggestions:

1)  If you need new relationships, look for people who share your values and interests and reach out to them.
2)  When you find those people who enrich your life, enrich their life.
3)  Actively seek to find ways in which you can add more value to their life.
4)  Communicate with them on a regular basis.  Do fun things together. Do projects together.  Do service together.
5)  Work on a project that is important to them.
6)  Be an Indian giver.  The Native American’s had it right.  All healthy relationship between humans and between humans and nature are reciprocal.  In order for a relationship to thrive, both parties need to benefit from it.  If you always give you will burn out and resent.  If you always take you will become vain and eventually sad and alone.  So seek reciprocity in all relations.  Give to those you have taken from and receive from those whom you have given.
7)  Be clear.  Offer what you have to offer and ask for what you want.  Be compassionate but not a door mat.  If a relationship lacks reciprocity, deal with it.  Make clear requests. Keep the lines of communication open.  Be willing to work things out.  All long term relationships have their moments of strain.  If people leave your social ecosystem as a result of your requests and your offerings, it is likely for the best.  It takes courage stand for empowered relationships.  A transformation of self means a transformation of your entire ecosystem, especially your social ecosystem.  As you grow in capacity and capability be prepared for change to happen around you.  Let go of any social ecosystem that is no longer aligned with your values and mission.  Begin to rely more on your social ecosystem that is aligned with your values and goals.
8)  Treat your relationships as life long bonds.  Seek out people who will do the same.  People who will stick it out through the hard times are the ones you want in your life in the long run.  In a world where people come and go, it is still those who have intimate relationships that last, who thrive on the deepest levels.

So in summary, One of the most important things we can do as Earthlings is to develop and maintain mutually beneficial trusting relationships among humans and among our community of living creatures.  Give and take, be clear, make it last, and enjoy each other. The greatest form of wealth is having deep, lasting, meaningful relationships.  May you all be truly wealthy.

Next meeting same place, Happy Place Yoga, Bodega, CA 6:15PM

With love and respect,

Mike Stokes

Ecology of Prosperity Training System
Organizational and Personal Coaching
www.ecologyofprosperity.com

Lush Planet Design Build
Ecological Construction and Design
www.lushplanet.net
CA Lic#934358
707-922-4790

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Ecologically grounded principles and practices that will create prosperity in you life.

In all the things that I suggest here, the most important thing is to not shut down and stay energized while considering these things. Rome was not built in a day. In every pursuit start with what you have from where you are. Lean into the effort, Take the smallest steps you need to keep moving forward, the pace is irrelevant, only forward action is important. Nothing else. A thousand small steps is better then 1 giant leap. The force of character is built in the many small steps, the giant leap is fantastic but soon fads to a memory and leaves little trace on the psyche. where as every small step that was taken consciously moving in the right direction builds apon the other and creates an everlasting strength and become rewards in themselves.

Higher levels of prosperity come from
1. Maximizing your energy through inspiration and enthusiasm
2. Increasing your organization by aligning the time and details of your life with your values and a mission
3. Increasing your effectiveness through focus and alignment with your values, energy cycles and the cycles of nature.
4. Increasing your efficiency including conserving your energy{read money in here as well}
5. Responding to feedback from your body, the people around you and your environment: taking in that information and adjusting your actions to get a more direct route to your destination
6. Continually refining and giving your unique contribution (value you add) to the world.
7. Increasing your capacity for objective analysis of information.
8. Never blaming in thought or speech the world or others for the circumstances of your life. There are no excuses in nature only adaptation and evolution Adopt the philosophy that your mind makes you an all powerful human creator who can create anything(as long as it is aligned with the laws of nature) that you believe in and are willing to dedicate your life to in belief and action.
9. Creating an environment of people and things that pulls you in the direction of doing all these things.

So the next and probably more important question is how do you do that?

Here are some ideas.

1. Write down everything that inspires you and gives you energy that your can think of in 5 minutes. Commit to doing at least one of those things for 5-15 minutes today. Tell someone that you are unwilling to let down that you are going to do it and ask them to call you at the end of the day to make sure you did it. Write down what time of the day or day of the week that you feel the most energy and the least, for today do tasks that require focus and effort on high energy times and ones that do not on low energy times. (ask them to check in with you on the things that follow as well).

2. Right now, stop reading take 2-5 minutes and organize your purse, briefcase of wallet. Make sure that it functions better then before you started. Then make a list of 5 things you could do to better organize your life that will take less then 5 minutes to do and can be done today. Pick one commit, tell your accountability person and do it today.

3. If you have not already make a list of 3-5 values that you have. Write down a goal or a mission that empowers you and benefits others as well as your self. It is not important that it is the right goal only that you choice it. You can always change it later. Do one small thing that is aligned with those values and that goal today. Tell your accountability person.

4. Identify 2 things that you buy on a regular basis and can give up once and if you were to give them up it would benefit you. Give up 1 of those things in the moment you can afford it for one day starting the first day you are going to buy something. Identify 1-5 things that you do that reduce your energy and that you intuitively feel would be beneficial to give up. Give one up once.. Then decide the next day if you are going to do either again.

5. Now that you have clarified your values and created a mission, begin to record feedback you are getting from your body, people and the environment. Too much “negative” feedback can shut you down, so only take in that which you can absorb without stopping your forward motion. You are always getting feedback. Start by writing down 1-5 things you noticed today in the way your body, people and the environment responded to you. Make sure to note as many “positive” feed backs as”negative”
.
6. Make a list of 2-5 things you are really good at. If you are having trouble with this, ask someone who knows you well and is observant. Create a sheet of paper with 4 columns. In the first column write your skills, 2nd your values, 3rd your current mission or goal. In the forth column write your dream life in one to two sentences in wording that is personal, positive and present tense. Let those first three columns inform it. Now write that down in a place where it will not be lost and you will see it on a regular basis. Practice believing it at it at least once a week but better once or twice a day and ask yourself, how can I be that today. What action could I take that that person would take today? Do at least one small thing that person would do. And one day that person will be you.

7. Do you remember the last time you thought one thing got some new information and realized you were wrong? Well that was the last time you increased your ability to be objective. No one is right 100 percent of the time. But how often do we thing we are right. For most of us it is darn near 100 percent of the time. Today try to learn something new, be it online, or in a book or documentary, that fundamentally challenges something you believe, See if you can identify the emotional reasons that believing this would have benefited you. Today let go of one false belief. I guarantee you, you have plenty. it is not hard for others to identify them for you, but see if you can begin to identify them for yourself. Like it or not our beliefs are shaped more by emotion then by reason. it is only by a careful deconstruction of our beliefs and a reconstruction from a near objective place (total objectivity is impossible) that we begin to approach reality as opposed to our perspective masquerading as reality.

8. We need practices that help us to control our thoughts. The mind will run wild with all kinds of interpretations that suit the comfort or infatuation of the day. One of the best ways to tame the mind is to create a boundary of types of thought that we allow and types that we do not. One of the most destructive thought forms is that of blame and complaint. If your thoughts are predominantly blame oriented and complaint oriented you can never have lasting prosperity nor joy nor health.

In addition to the importance of controlling our thinking, we need to have the power to build, to create, to persevere and to complete. This is impossible if we believe the outside world can stop us. If we were not blessed with an empowered inner voice that constantly assured us we could do it, then we must come to realize that the largest enemy to our own progress is not the economy, our education, our upbringing, or lack of time or money but rather our own habits of thinking and believing.

Once we adopt the idea that through our personal beliefs, we can create anything that is aligned with the laws of nature, we become capable of things that the greatest men and women throughout history have achieved. It is important to note that our understanding of the laws of nature are limited, so there are all kinds of things that are possible to create that have yet been unthinkable, but if you try to violate the laws of nature no matter what you believe, you will fail. Your belief in your ability will not bend or break the laws of nature but your belief, if it is strong enough and backed up by enough action, adaptation and evolution will call nature to reveal her yet unknown secrets to you. I like the way Bruce Lee used to put it. “Limitation as no limitation.”

9. Once you have clarified and recorded your values, created a goal or mission and identified an ideal life, you now have a foundation to organize your life around, Now we need to create the conditions that will support a new trajectory. Will power is not the answer.

An object that is at rest will stay at rest unless an unbalanced force acts upon it.
An object that is in motion will not change its velocity unless an unbalanced force acts upon it.

Therefore any area of your life that has been at rest will try to remain at rest any in motion in motion. The laws of the universe are fractal, the same things that affect the stars and planets affect your ability to change and move as well. But this is good news because we simply need to apply a force to that old habit until a new trajectory(habit) is created.

So how do we do this. There are many ways, but they all involve changing your environment and your role in your environment. Here are a few things to try first

A. Join a group of like minded people aligned with your value, mission, ideal life.(VMIL)

B. Join a volunteer cause that is aligned with your VMIL. There are a multitude of groups out there and every one will take your time and effort without hesitation.

C. Start your own support group with people that are aligned with your (VMIL)

D. Go the places where those like minded people hang out and socialize

E. Look around your home, office, car, any place you have some control over and ask yourself, is this aligned with my ideal life? If the answer is no, take one small action today that would be. Maybe it is cleaning, maybe organizing, maybe it is getting rid of something, whatever, the point is to take some easy action that is consistent with your created life.

G. Get photos of people that are most aligned with your Ideal life and put them all around you at home, office, etc.

This is so important that I repeat it here.

In all the things that I suggest here, the most important thing is to not shut down and continuing moving forward while considering and implementing these things. Rome was not built in a day. In every pursuit start with what you have from where you are. Lean into the effort. Take the smallest steps you need to keep moving forward, the pace is irrelevant, only forward action is important. Nothing else. A thousand small steps is better then 1 giant leap. The force of character is built in the many small steps, the giant leap is fantastic but soon fads to a memory and sometimes leaves little trace on the psyche. where as every small step that was taken consciously moving in the right direction builds apon the other and creates an everlasting strength and become rewards in themselves.

If you made it this far you are a trouper. Let me know what you think and if you are going to try any of the suggestions and how it feels if you do

All the best,

Mike

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Ecological principles to help achieve your goals: Principles 7. Identifying energy producers / decomposers and adapting to your ecosystem type

There are many different types of ecosystems on earth ranging from rain forests, to deserts. In each different ecosystem, the species within them have adapted very different strategies to thrive. The basic characteristics that determine the different ecosystems are solar energy, heat, water availability and frequency, mineral, carbon and oxygen availability.

It is pretty obvious to the lay observer that hot wet terrestrial climates are highly productive ecosystems and that dry or cold climates are much less productive in terms of biomass and diversity. What might be less obvious at first glance is the way the species that live in these types of climates adapt to survive. In highly productive environments, the species within those systems adapt to the other species primarily, whereas the species that live in much less productive environments adapt primarily to the environment itself.

So how do we apply this concept to our personal and organizational projects. First we need to determine if our project lies in a productive or scarce ecosystem. If it is productive, our primary adaptation strategy should be to adapt to the other players in the arena, if it is less productive, it should be to adapt to the environment itself. So lest say you want to start the first, CSF(community supported fishery) in the North Bay of San Francisco, CA. In that case, there are no other players in that arena. Your strategy to adapt and evolve should not be based on what competitors are doing but on the consumers of fish products in your area. If on the other hand you are going to start another CSA (community supported agriculture) business in the North Bay of San Francisco, there are many players in that arena. In that case you will need to adapt to what the other players are doing and fill a niche that they are not filling.

There are only two requirements for an ecosystem. You need energy producers and decomposers. So identifying your project ecosystem’s energy producers and your decomposers is another key element to creating a thriving project ecosystem. In our world, like it or not, dollars are, at this point in time, a form of stored energy. So anything that brings in dollars has to be seen as an energy producer, in addition to that anything that literally captures energy from the sun or atmosphere and makes it available to you is an energy producer in your project ecosystem. IF your project is something like being fit enough to compete in a triathlon, then an energy producer would be anything that motivates and enables you to train and compete.

Decomposers are equally important in an ecosystem as energy producers. in our culture we don’t give much value to decomposers. Decomposers take spent energy and materials and make them available for reuse. If we stay with the example of a becoming able to compete in a triathlon. The material inputs to your project ecosystem are again anything that motivates and enables you to complete your triathlon. A decomposer in your project would be something that breaks down and recycles that motivation and enabling stuff. So for example, lets say that you are motivated by your spouse who has participated in 5 previous triathlon and is vibrantly alive in a large part because of her relationship to competing in triathlon. It may seem funny to say that a decomposer is critical in this case but it is. By analogy, the decomposer in this case would be you. specifically your ability to break down the inspiring and motivating influence of your spouse and to internalize it into yourself in a way that transforms her energy and action into your own. You literally take the energy she gives you and metabolize it into its component parts and transform that psychic resource into energy that is utilized by you to train and prepare for your own triathlon. This particular ecological principle needs more examples to make the value of it clear and I will present them, but I assure you if you start honoring and enabling the role of the decomposers in your life you will be amazed at the benefits.

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Ecological principles to help achieve your goals: Principles 6 Proper Nutrition and Exercise

Proper Nutrition and Exercise may not sound like an ecological principle but it is probably the most important foundation for all personal achievement.

In a nutshell we simply can not function at our optimum if we do not get the proper nutrition and exercise. There are 4 realms of nutrition and exercise, 1 physical, 2 emotional, 3 spiritual and 4 mental

When it comes to physical, emotional and spiritual nutrition and exercise, we share those needs with our close relatives, the large primates. We can learn a lot from them as to what makes them thrive. As far as the mental nutrition and exercise, that is a uniquely human need. With advent of complex language came the need for meaning and understanding about our lives and our world as well as the need for mental stimulation and mental relaxation.

There are volumes on proper nutrition and exercise on the physical level, so I will not mention much other then the most cutting edge and important facts that are not common knowledge or practice in our culture.

Starting with nutrition, there is a basic formula that if you follow you will begin the move to optimum functioning. First there are five main things that each meal should include: Low fat protein, high omega 3 fats, live food enzymes, diverse pro-biotic bacteria, complex carbohydrates. The biggest more calorie dense meals should be eaten as early in the day as possible to increase the possibility of aerobic digestion. 3-5 meals a day with at least 2 hours between meals is optimal. One fact overlooked by most in our culture is the ability of your body to digest your food. Any food that is undigested is toxic to the body, in that case your stool should: not be urgent, not be hard or stuck, be the consistency of a banana, smell of rich compost like you would buy at the nursery, and have zero undigested food in it. Culturally we are taught to think that digestion is yucky and to not pay any attention to it. This is one of the largest mistakes we can make if we are committed to excellent health. Simply put, everything starts in the digestion, it is our power plant, our battery and waste processing system. If it does not function optimally, we can not. So experiment, pay attention and get yourself on a diet that optimizes your stool and you will be amazed at the results.

As far as physical exercise goes, we all know that we should do it. Here is another reason to make it a priority. There was a recent study that determined that 10 minutes of mild cardio exercise secreted the equivalent brain chemicals antidepressants. Put another way there is a huge body of evidence that indicates that exercise is the single easiest way to improve your mood, the essential brain chemicals that make you happy oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine are all secreted when you exercise and as you age your brain looses the receptors for these chemicals and if you do not get them continually they degrade faster. So like everything, use it or lose it. So if you want to be, not just healthy but happy exercise regularly. A key to exercise is making it fun for you, whether that is listening to your favorite music while doing it, Dancing in your living room by yourself, or find a new outdoor activity that is fun for you, make it fun for you, and don’t worry about what any body else thinks.

Now on the Emotional nutrition and exercise. The notion of emotional exercise may seem odd to some, if you think of it in a context of nature all living things grow. Once growth stops, then death begins. It is the same in the emotional self, no growth equals the beginning of dying emotional. So emotional exercise is growing emotionally. The easiest way to exercise emotionally is to take on a new role in your life, Coach a soccer team, work in a soup kitchen, start that career that you have always wanted to, take a class in something that you have always wanted to get better at.

As far as emotional nutrition goes, it is pretty simple but so often overlooked. We all need unconditional love and attention from people close to us, Large primates will die if they do not have a troop to live in. They and we need to feel that we belong. Being accepted by someone or someones, is the almost exactly same in our consciousness as being loved. There are volumes of information that outline the negative effects of a lack of loving relationships in one’s life. There is a much smaller but growing body of evidence that links high functioning and happiness to high levels of love / acceptance. The easiest way to increase the amount of unconditional love in your life is to go out and unconditionally love another.

Proper mental nutrition and exercise is pretty straight forward. you need good information on subjects that are interesting to you. Exercise can be simply explained this take the information that you acquire and express it somehow. Through writing, teaching, art, profession, etc. The point is to take the mental inputs and move them out into some medium outside yourself.

Proper spiritual nutrition is finding deep meaning and value in your life. You must come to a place where you know that your life has meaning and is important. This can be achieved through organized religion, science, art, profession, relationships, service, etc. The bottom line is that your proper spiritual nutrition depend on a conviction that your life is on purpose and valuable.

Proper spiritual exercise is the process of regularly updating your beliefs and action to make sure that they are consistent with your deepest held convictions and current understanding. In nature everything evolves. Evolution is life. It is the key to thriving life. As you grow you will learn new things and acquire new capacities and your understanding and conviction should naturally change with that evolution. As Emerson says, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.”

In another article we will discuss one of the most important topics. how do we create these new habits.

Wishing you and all life health, happiness and prosperity,

Mike Stokes

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The Ecology of Resolution: A New Beginning for a New Age. How to succeed using nature as your guide.

Why This Workshop is So Effective:

  •    Ecosystems can be described in terms of functional principles that create abundance seemingly with little effort.  Very few of us can make substantial change on will power alone, ecosystems show us what we need to succeed without relying on will power.
  •    Applying the principles of ecosystems to your personal goals will give you the greatest chance to create success that will last.
  •    The principles of ecosystems are free to all and have been proven to work over billions of years.
  •    Applying principles of successful ecological adaptation to your personal ecosystem will help you focus your efforts in a direction that will maximize your potential to thrive
  •    Using the principles of resilient ecosystems will heal and invigorate you and everyone you touch now and for the long term.

Date    Saturday January 5, 2013 plus 8 weekly progress check-ins TBD
Time    11am-3pm
Place    The Dhyana Center, Ste 250  186 North Main Street, Sebastopol, CA 95472
Cost    Cost: $50  10 work trade seats available. 4 hours of trade for full tuition.  Some Barter Possible.  Includes the workshop and 8 weekly progress check in meetings.

   How is this workshop Different.
Most workshops just give you information and then turn you loose.  We will begin and sustain the process of creating new habits.  The Ecology of Resolution is about results.  Nature does not philosophize, nature acts and the results are beautiful and bountiful.  The main session and the progress follow up sessions are designed to maximize your potential for success and give your the progress, structure, tools and knowledge you need to sustain that success for as long as you like.  You will not be left alone to accomplish your vision.   In nature we are never alone. The level of support you will get in this seminar is unparalleled.

   Who Should Attend
The Ecology of Resolution is for anyone who is committed to the environment and/or social welfare and wants to create more in their personal and/or professional pursuits.  It is for people who want to evolve and realize more of their latent potential.  If you are serious about moving forward on your goals,willing to work for it and willing to support and be supported, then you can benefit tremendously from this workshop.

Even if you have failed on every resolution you ever made, this workshop can work for you.  This system really does work because it does not rely on willpower, it relies on the power of nature itself.

   Note    Please have, at a minimum, an idea of the area you want to work on and the result you would like to accomplish.

Who is the Instructor?
Mike Stokes, creator of The Ecology of Prosperity Training System

Mike Stokes is a Personal and Organizational Coach teaching the Ecology of Prosperity system.  He is in private practice and consults throughout California.  He is the co-founder in 2006 of Abundant Life Support Group.  He had founded and run 3 ecologically grounded businesses.  In his previous career as a yoga instructor and writer, he formulated his ecological approach to human development.  Mike currently lives in Monte Rio, CA in a small community of three households, with his supportive and loving wife Kristin, their dog Raj, and their 3 Goats: Buttermilk, Wizzy, and Mariposa

Want More Information
Go to www.ecologyorprosperity.com

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Ecological principles to help achieve your goals: Principles 4 and 5 Interdependence and Niche-ing

In a thriving ecosystem, there are literally billions of interdependent interactions among creatures in that ecosystem. This is the bedrock of the abundance that nature creates. The abundance is a direct result of the complex interdependence among creatures. In our lives we can use this principle to create a similar abundance. by mimicking these types of relationships. Each Species and individual within each species exploits a niche in the system. Anywhere that a resource is under utilized, some creature evolves to utilize that resource. For example some ants use fungi to digest plant matter for them making it possible for them to have a huge food source that would otherwise be unavailable to them.

Similarly, in our personal and professional pursuits we can begin to locate and utilize resources, to benefit the whole as well as yourself. In order to do this effectively, we need to niche. What I mean by niche-ing is to focus your efforts in the direction of your natural strength and interests and values.

Wishing you and all of life health, happiness and prosperity.

Mike Stokes

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Ecological principles to help achieve your goals: Principle 2 and 3 Adaptability and Feedback loops

In the last post we talked about the importance of diveristy. In this post I would am going to cover the conept of adaptability and feedback loops.

In all all resilient ecosystems there is a magnificent dance of life forms constantly interacting with one another. Each species and individual within in each species is constantly reacting to the new information it is receiving from its environment and the other life forms in it. This adaptation is what makes life possible. The more adaptive, the more resilient.

To apply this to your goals, you need to create a system that enables you to collect useful information on how you are doing on achieving your goal. Much of it is intuitive. Things like “what gets measured gets managed.” and setting “specific and measurable time bound goals.” What is less obvious is what to measure along the path to achieving your goal. It may seem logical to measure how much money you are making if you are trying to grow your business, but in reality the most important measurement may be how your target market perceives your product or service. This is just a broad stroke example. My point is to begin the process of asking the question, what kind of information is going to best give me the information I need to adapt to the changing circumstances that are inevitable in the attainment of my goal.

So first we need to have the right information and next we need to adapt to it what it tells us. Too much change will make our goal ecosystem collapse. But to little change will cause us to grow rigid and miss cues that will give us important information along the path. So it is like everything, a dance.

Lets stick with the same example goal.

Have an amazing, vital, joyful long term romantic relationship.

The principle of adaptability and feedback loops.

In the first place we need to make sure that we are getting timely and good information on the health of our relationship. Biologically we are designed to “feel good” when things are going good and “feel bad” when they are not. So in the case of your relationship, you need to be aware of the feelings of your partner and your own feeling about your relationship. When something feels off, it usually is. The first step is to realize that something is off, the second is to adapt to it. First we need to figure out what is at the root of any disharmony and simply eliminate it and replace it with something else. Nature does not dwell on what does not work. Nature simply kills off what does not work and adopts what does. Take in that information and make a change. The intersting thing is that only one person has to decide to change for it to occur. When a firm commitment to change something is taken by one person in the relationship. The whole relationship changes. Commitment is the fuel that powers true change. Without it there is only false adaptation. Courage in many cases is required, courage is the spark that ignites the comitment and follow through is the engine that makes it take root.

So lets say you want more fire in your sex life. First you need to get the feedback from yourself and your partner and all the information available to you in that realm then you need to take that information and adapt to it in such a way that you experiment with “mutations” until you catch one that works. All during this process you are constantly getting more feedback and adapting until your goal is achieved. In this sense there is no failure only new information that gets you closer to your goal.

To sum up, constanly seek feedback from your actions, adapt to that feedback, be it negative or positive. Experiment, :”mutate” your approach and each time you try something new adapt to that new information, incorporate what works and let go what does not.

Until next time,

Mike

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Ecological principles to help achieve your goals: Principle 1 Diversity

The principles that make ecosystems work can be categorized into 7 major principles. Those same principles when applied correctly to your goals will enable you to succeed at a much higher level then you currently do.

The principles are

DIVERSITY, DECENTRALIZATION, ENERGY EFFICIENCY, LOCAL SELF RELIANCE, ADAPTABILITY, INTERDEPENDENCE, CONSISTENCY

Today lets talk about diversity. All ecosystems require diversity to function optimally. Diversity is what creates stability in an ecosystem. Since the invention of finance people have been applying this principle to investing. We all know that a diverse investment portfolio is a stable one. The same is true in ecosystems as in every other area of life.

So how do you apply this principle to your goals. First to have a diverse group of poeple that you go to for support be that informational, emotional or physical. Second is to gather your information regarding your goal from diverse sources. The more sources you check, the closer to the best information you will get. Third is to allow for a diverse set of actions on your way to achieving your goal. What seems to be the best route today may in fact be the slowest when new information comes your way.

Example goal

Have an amazing, vital, joyful long term romantic relationship.

Applying principle 1 Diversity

Read a wide variety of books on the subject, go to a wide variety of workshops, talk to a wide variety of people in and out of relationships(make sure to learn from the mistakes as well as the successes of other people). Try a wide variety of approaches. Learn what works what does not and adapt to the new information. The mistake that many people make is that they try the same thing and expect a different result. It really does not work to just focus on diversity, you have to do all the principles simultaneously. So along with trying a diversity of tactics, conserve your energy, pay attention to feedback and adapt, Do your part, take care of yourself, but contribute to the whole, stay consistent on a macro scale, keep the things that sustain your life in proper balance.

Relationships are a complex, interdependent dance just like an ecosystem. I think it is a good example to start with. We tend to think that we can find a silver bullet that will solve everything, but it does not work that way, we must stay continually aware and evolve with the changing conditions and at the same time make sure that the ecosystem of our relationship is getting all the nutrients, water, energy, warmth, connections, and feedback that it needs to stay healthy.

I hope this has been helpful. I will continue to post new information as I can. Soon we will be starting a new website dedicated to this new approach to living.

With love and respect,

Mike

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The village model of human habitation is the where it is at.

Image

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The Ecology of Prosperity

The Ecology of Prosperity:

The Path to Sustained Personal and Global Abundance.

 

The purpose of this article is to introduce you to a system of living that will give you tools that can enable and inspire you to succeed in your life in the unique way you define success and at the same time succeed in a way that enhances life on Earth now and in the future.    The second half of this statement is the key distinction between this system and others.  Most other systems promote success as a system of personal gain only.  The more enlightened works on the subject define success as, at most, beneficial for humanity.  In contrast, this system of thought and action focuses on creating success that is universally life enhancing.  Not just for the few but for the many.  Not just in your home but everywhere on Earth.  Not just for humans but for all of life.  Not just now but for the next 100 generations.  This article will focus on the ecological belief structure necessary to create this new world.  The next article will introduce you to the beliefs and actions that will create your personal success .

 

This is not meant to be an exhaustive treatise on the much written about subjects of success or ecology.  It is suggestive only and meant to help motivate the reader to move in new directions that can help you and all.

 

The way to achieve the greatest heights of universal prosperity on Earth is to honor and unleash the power of individual motivation and creativity while at the same time channeling individual action to those things that do not harm but instead enhance life on Earth. Life is dependent on a healthy global and local “ecosystem”.  Since the advent of modern civilization what is required is not only a thriving physical ecosystem but a political, economic and social one as well.  If any of these segments of human activity are dysfunctional, they will work to sabotage the rest.  

 

The laws that govern a healthy physical ecosystem are the same laws that govern healthy political, economic and social ecosystems as well.  And they are the same laws that govern the individual, although on vastly different time horizons.  When we honor these laws in our pursuit of personal wealth, health and happiness we create abundance for all now and in the future.

 

 

Personal Motivation

 

The impulse of all life is to grow.   A fundamental element of universal prosperity is harnessing this force in as many beings as possible.  The genetic code of all living things promotes more life within each species and among species.  Simply put the essence of life is to create more life. This is the same impulse that drives us.  It is us.  We are the impulse of life to grow made in a form that has self awareness, language, the ability to plan and motor skills to build, an extremely potent combination.  Prior to the human ability to control the environment, the impulse of life to grow created a natural environment that thrived with incredible diversity and abundance;  always self correcting because no creatures were able to manipulate the environment to the degree we can.  This is the nature of all living systems.  The way of life is to become more abundant, complex and synergistic.  Each species and individuals within each species play a unique role synergizing to the whole.  This maximizes the potential life mass and energy in any given ecosystem creating the maximum amount of life that any bioregion can accommodate.  This maximum amount is continually evolving, increasing  and complexifying.  This is how life grew to create such a vast, beautiful and complex systems of living things and can continue to do so if we let it. This urge of all living things to grow combined with the synergistic and balanced nature of that growth is how life on Earth became so ubiquitous, bountiful and beautiful. This synergistic growth is the key not only to the bounty and beauty of natural system but the bounty and beauty of individuals and groups of people as well. 

 

We are primarily motivated by self interest but we no longer are limited by our local ecosystem in the amount or quality of growth.   When our action is in line with the natural laws of ecosystems, it benefits not only the self, but the whole.  As individuals, we act at least 99% of the time in our own self interest.  Self interest as I am defining it, is anything that benefits you physically, emotionally or spiritually.  So caring for your child or pet would still be considered self interest since it benefits you emotionally and spiritually.  We are constantly trying to better our situation in life, or enjoying what we have already created.  The problem now is that since we are no longer dependent on the ecosystem for our short term sustenance, we can violate the laws of synergistic life in our ecosystem.  We do not experience the direct feedback of food shortages and disease.   Since we can plan and build technologies that manipulate our environment, our self interest no longer needs to be in constant dynamic harmony with life on Earth.  Now we may survive on Earth temporarily while destroying all the diversity and beauty that sustained us.

 

Global Prosperity

 

Many people think we are separate from nature and separate from each other, that belief is the main reason we have ecological and social problems.  Mine and your views and actions in relation to nature are primarily determined by our world view which gives us our interpretation of reality.  Most of us think of ourselves as dependent on nature in some way.  Some people think that we are not dependent on nature.  These views mainly but not entirely depend on one’s belief about the origin of existence.  There are three main ways of looking at the universe.  One is as a world that is created by God, another is the world itself was not created so to speak but is itself God and the last is that the world simply exists.  Whatever your personal interpretation of the ultimate nature of reality, if we are to be a source of life thriving in the long term on Earth, we need to begin to believe that we and all living things are one.  Also we need to believe that how we treat the natural world we treat ourselves.  We need to think of ourselves as a direct descendent of all the people, animals and plants that came before us and as ancestors of all that will come after us.  As we stand on the generations that came before us, we lay the foundation of future generations.  If there is such a thing as reincarnation, it exists, at a minimum, in the evolution of human thought and action on Earth.  What is critical at this juncture in humanity’s evolution is a new, well not new, but newly adopted belief that we are one with nature obviously including other humans.

 

For the prosperous Earth to become a reality, the belief that we are one with nature for all time will need to be enshrined in various sacred ways.  We will need to adopt a whole new set of social rituals to honor this idea.  We will need to reinforce this belief in our neighbors, our enemies, our children; in everyone.  It will need to become the soup we swim in.  The air we breathe.  We need to begin thinking about oneness with all life in the same way we think about gravity.  It simply is a law of the universe.

 

There is one thing that dominates everything on Earth.  That thing is the common beliefs of the majority of people.  Some may argue it is the elite that rule, but in this age the elites rule with the unconscious acceptance of the mass beliefs.  Other than meteors, majority belief is the one force that can destroy our planet, or transform it into heaven on Earth.

 

I will not attempt here to convince you that we are one with nature.   That would take a fundimental insight.  That type of insight demands a whole set of parameters that are beyond the scope of these writings.  You may have those types of insights but that is not the intention of these writings.  These articles are for those of you who have already come to the conclusion that all life is connected and that what we do to life we do to ourselves.  If you believe this and are ready to live the fullest life possible and have the greatest positive impact, then these writings are for you. 

 

Belief and the nature of our being

 

We are the conscious composite of all life, the elements of the Earth and the Energy of the Sun held together by the force of gravity and somehow influenced by the mysterious force of dark matter.  We are dependent on other life forms, we are dependent on the Earth, we are dependent on the Sun.  We are dependent on the fundamental elements and laws that govern the universe.  This is obviously true, but a great majority of us don’t live that way.  We live as if we are some how independent and transcendent of these things. We live inside our technological bubble, thinking that the bubble sustains us, when it is simply a time capsule that is using the larger forces of nature to sustain itself.  Unfortunately, the dominant global culture is stuck in a belief structure that dishonors our dependence on and oneness with the Earth, the Sun, and all life.  We live in a mythology that says humans are the center of all things, as if we are the end of the evolutionary chain or even separate from it.  Most of us think of ourselves as the most important life form.  The reality is that we are but a side show.  We are one of many, each with its own power and intelligence.  We are but a small sliver of the evolutions of beings in the vast time frame of living things.  At some point, we will be surpassed by more intelligent and complex beings.  But if we continue to relate to the rest of life as less then ourselves and as ourselves as independent from life, our current civilization is doomed.  We literally are in midst of the next great mass extinction of life on Earth, only this time we are the ones causing it.  In the last mass extinctions, it did not go so well for the dominant creatures of that time.   More metaphysically put, the vitality of our being is manifested in the diversity and vitality of the rest of life on Earth.  We are literally destroying the ground of our own being at an ever increasing pace. 

 

Beliefs shape our values and drive our actions

 

The main reason we are doing this is because our deepest beliefs do not consider other life forms, the Earth and the Sun as the ground of our own being, as the foundation of our prosperity.  Even in new age systems, there is a tendency to focus only on individual thought and believe thought to be the root of all prosperity.  This view is important but entirely incomplete. We need a new view of creation, one that does not put us at the center of the conscious world; one that instead locates us as a cog in the gears of the whole machine; an organ of the Earth so to speak.  You can think of humans as the nervous system of the Earth Life System.  In our current state we are equivalent to a metastasizing cancer and stricken with Alzheimer’s disease. 

 

We need to see ourselves as musicians in a great orchestra playing our part in harmony with every other living thing on Earth in the concert hall of the Earth.  Right now we are playing this dissonant chaos in which one instrument, the human is trying to dominate all others in shrieking shrill cries of self aggrandizement. 

 

Simply put, we can not exist without the Earth, the Sun and all the dynamic relationships within it.  It makes up our very bones, blood, organs and brain. We are the energy and matter of the Earth manifest in this time and in this global ecosystem.  We are a manifestation of the evolution of life on Earth here and now.  In the distant past, we did not exist in this form.  In the future we will not exist in this form.  Every shining pine needle, every salmon, every ameba, every blue whale, every blade of grass gave rise to us and sustains us now, literally and spiritually. Until the dominant culture begins to believe that we are one with the Earth, we are doomed.  But if enough of us adopt this view to create a mass change in world perception, then we can thrive. 

 

No green action can save our civilization except one.  All the recycling programs, all the solar power, all the green building, all the carbon reduction can not save us.  A dominant culture that does not honor the Earth along with all its living systems in its core belief will not survive.  If we, the creators of the Technology do not see the global ecosystem as the life blood that sustains us, we will destroy it.  But on the other hand, all our creativity, all our intelligence and all our technology will create a new paradise if the dominant culture on Earth adopts the view that we are one with all life and the Earth.   

 

Wealth and You

 

The source of all health, wealth and happiness on Earth is the sum total of all living things in dynamic relationship with the Earth and the Sun. That is not to say the non living elements of the earth are not a source of wealth as well, but only to say that they are useless without the total interaction of all living systems.  Therefore the living systems themselves are the root of wealth.  The sum total of life energy and life diversity on Earth is in freefall and has been for at least the last 100 years.  The climate crisis is but a symptom of this.  Although it is critical to solve the climate crisis, it is our relationship to nature that we must transform. 

 

We can thrive individually and do good globally. There can still be billionaires.  Income equality is not the answer.

To create holistic personal prosperity we must start from the belief that we are all connected now and have been always and will be always.   When we start with that belief then we can begin to harness the incredible individual power that lies within each one of us and create a world that is truly heaven on Earth. 

 

What is takes for an individual to create personal and global prosperity can be divided into three realms: The realm of thought, the realm of action and the realm of things.  In the realm of thought, what we think and what we believe are the critical components to master.  In the realm of action, the interaction between our thoughts, our physical sensations and external stimuli is what needs to be harnessed.  In the realm of things, the critical component to master is the physical properties of things and their relationship to one another.

 

Over the next two years, the posts that follow will outline a new practice and philosophy of prosperity that harnesses the drive for self gain while honoring our place within the web of life that sustain us all.  The old distinctions between capitalism and socialism, business and environment, personal and global are relevant only in as much as they help us find that zone of dynamic vibrant life.  It is high time for us to implement a human system that really works for all life and for the long term.  That is what this system will aim to teach.  This will be the first article of many that will explain this approach through description, exercise and example.  If you apply this system fully, you can achieve the highest states of success and fulfillment possible for you.  You will even be able to achieve heights which seemed unobtainable before.  And in the process, the natural world including the human world will become a much better place now and for generations to come.

 

Mike Stokes

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