Wow. I haven’t blogged in almost a month. How time flies. I’m here today because I just capped one of the most, if not the most, amazing weekend of my life at the Bioneers Conference in San Rafael, CA that I had the pleasure of attending.
What in the world is a Bioneer, you ask?
It is a new word, a neologism coined in 1990. A bioneer is “a biological pioneer, an ecological inventor who’s got an elegant and often simple set of solutions for environmental conundrums.” Bioneers is a New Mexico-based nonprofit organization promoting practical and innovative solutions to environmental and social problems based in a philosophy which recognizes the aliveness, interdependence, and intelligence of the natural world. The conference, held annually, brings Bioneers together from all over the country and even from overseas. There were speakers and workshops on a variety of issues, including happiness, consciousness, clean energy, education, biomimicry, green design, entrepreneurship, indigenous rights and law.
Boy, I felt right at home. What an experience it was.
For a long time I’ve been looking for a community of like-minded people, a forum where thoughts and ideas are exchanged in the interest of the greater good amidst thunderous applause, and a place where my soul can seek comfort in the deep sense of kinship with everyone around. For at least the past two months, I’ve overworked myself day in and day out. I had little time to just ‘be.’ I had no time to listen to my soul. When I felt physically sick, I went to the doctor and took the prescribed medication. I recovered physically, but, little did I know, my soul continued to be malnourished. The emptiness was palpable, and my soul was protesting in its starvation. Bioneers was the much-needed nourishment that couldn’t have come at a better time.
During the conference, I would at times feel the sound of my spirit chime in with the choir of hope and consciousness that the Bioneers have worked so hard to establish. The conference provided a spiritual uplift that allowed me to feel the most at peace with the surroundings than I’ve been in what seems like forever. For that, I am eternally grateful.
The Bioneers Conference has opened my eyes both to the selfless and relentless efforts of other individuals to make this world a better place and a multitude of troubling issues I’ve never thought about before. This world is so much more complex and faces so many more challenges than I could ever imagine or feel. It is a common theme for the speakers to come up to the podium and start off with a variation of ‘You know, when I am with you guys, somehow the world is okay.’
Bioneers gave me that kind of hope. It also gave me the comfort to know that I have kindred spirits who face the same challenges I do and share the same despair I do. But most importantly, it is a spiritual feast, a feast that have energized me to continue to push for our much-needed paradigm shift.
This is the year.
I encourage my friends to catch some of the videos, available online for free for a month, of some of these phenomenal speakers. It’s at http://www.bioneerslive.org/vod.html.