The word “Regenerative” gets heaved and hoed around like the words sustainable, mindfulness, and groovy. Most of you don’t remember the latter.
At the behest of a trusted colleague, I signed up for a Regenerative Business Summit. It required six hours of my time. I winced at the nomenclature; aren’t there enough regenerative things already?
It was led by an elder who believed in something other than cause and effect. Carol Sanford really rocked my world of understanding.
She believes that most people operate under a worldview that is causing a major shortfall for humans, our economies, societies, and our living Earth.
Carol loves to disrupt things – especially the way we think.
She speculates that the way we are working may be accelerating the wrong path. Even though we think it’s a noble one. We may be ignoring new possibilities – stuck in our own feedback loop.
What happened 20 years ago may not be the right solution for today.
What is a Regenerative Life?
Okay – let’s begin with the word.
The definition of Regeneration itself means to EVOLVE capacity – not to do better or follow certain rules. It means to make you, your business – your life – your friends – more able to do what you, they, or it seeks to do to express your essence.
Sounds preposterous and precocious.
You may think it means eating and supporting Regenerative Farming practices,
eating the foods that serve you and the planet. Whether you are a vegan or Paleo caveperson, Regenerative Organic is a fine place to start.
You will reap a host of physical benefits ranging from increased energy to a lack of bloating.
Bloating aside, what does this diet do for the planet, farmers, indigenous peoples, the rainforests? How does it affect the greater biosphere? These are the whole-systems questions we must ponder.
I know a woman from Iowa; she was born in the early 20’s – a child of the “depression.” I believe it was a depression of certain places, markets, and measurements. We hadn’t paid attention to the greater whole and how this affected real people and income inequality.
She was a childhood friend of my father, Floyd. Today at nearly 100, she is a person who thinks about whole systems.
Mille Kalish wrote her first book at the golden age of 84. Little Heathens became a best seller on the NYT’s and Oprah circuit of literary circles.
She was a pure and remarkable genius. Austere and humble, she did not waste a thing. Nor did she squander a moment of joy. She told me once, “ Cutting your food waste should be at the top of the agenda as it links in well with the first step of this guide.”
What guide have we now in this entropy of chaos 2020 has brought us?
My mother – Mary Evelyn, on the other hand – she was flamboyant and bent towards certain esoteric comforts. She would bring certain mysterious psychics into our living room during my childhood – to heal sick children in Ohio or Indiana.
She believed in the power of thought and intention.
Some props were allowed for the sake of magnetic assurance. For example, the rose quartz meaning ensures emotional comfort.
Late in life, I once gave her a rose quartz as big as a puppy. She loved it and set it down near her bed before I bid her farewell.
She knew nothing about bots, servers, and tweets. She had no apps to guide her way.
She taught me an important life lesson: what you think and believe in, you will create.
Your thoughts are powerful, and you can train your mind to think that way.
Of course, she was also grounded and taught a linear way of thinking. She wished me always to be beautiful, strong, and smart – and of course, slim.
She did not know that I never weighed myself for thirty years. Competing on fitness tracker apps helps with your weight loss goals. But my goals were different.
I did not want to be slim; I wanted to be powerful and help facilitate change in the world.
Congresswomen do not fuss about their stature!
My husband says I am a heroic. I want to take care of people rather than allow them to thrive on their own, like a modern Joan of Arc, who went to battle for her cause.
There are no saviors anymore.
There is only us, taking care of ourselves and bringing forward the people around us to think in the same Regenerative way.
We must ask: Is the way we think most likely a linear one? Or a spacious one that encompasses the living systems we live in?
Are we aware that we filter in what we believe and filter out that which we do not?
Do we operate from a place of spaciousness or problem solving? Do we attack the problem, or do we solve the things that created it?
We busy ourselves with the mundane.
The accumulation of money, things, or stature – it’s true – You are probably wasting a lot of money on insurance, cell phone packages, and other ongoing costs.
But what really matters now as we move into 2021?
Carol wants us all to dream big, promise more, and keep raising the bar for ourselves and everyone else.
I want to foment and instigate a new paradigm for us all – we have so much potential!