keep the fire burning

The most important lesson I learned from Breaking Bad was that a drug dealer shouldn’t be addicted to their product. The powers that be in Australia mustn’t have paid close attention to all five seasons of that educational program because they have broken the cardinal rule.

We consume the black stuff so fast you’d be excused for thinking it had the restorative powers of an eternal life elixir combined with the addictive properties of nicotine. And in our infinite wisdom, we ship out this black gold to our poor regional neighbours whose consumption is only trumped by their desire for more. Luckily for us, they don’t have the resources or technology to support large-scale renewable rehab.

Coal, if you haven’t already gathered, is what I’m talking about. If I’m ever in doubt of the prodigious demand for the sooty stuff, I only have to wait an hour or so before I hear the squealing and grumbling of a coal train blundering past my house. The sound of a stampede continues for up to three minutes as tens and tens of graffiti covered carriages go by.

The laden train heads south down the mountain to Port Kembla. There it meets a scarily efficient shiploader that allows millions of tonnes of the stuff to be sent overseas each year to the hordes eagerly awaiting their next hit. These coal trains are an ever present reminder of the havoc and destruction we are wreaking on our planet. But the damage we’re doing to the planet simply mirrors the damage we’re doing to ourselves.

Self-hate seems to be à la mode. Angsty, clammy anxiety creeps up and catches in our throats. Anger is layered on top and quickly spills over. Dizzy, confused emotions that we press down with refined carbohydrates and sugary food-like substances. We eat and drink and buy because we don’t know how to sate our hunger.


I know what our hunger is. You do too if you look closely.

It’s a hunger for change. Hunger for internal and external peace. Hunger for satisfaction and contentment.

We desire connection and love and acceptance.

So quiet the anger. Turn down the volume on the anxiety. Look up now and notice all the sounds and sights in your field of vision. You are here now and you are luminous.

Coal, fast food and addiction are all symptoms of our dis-ease. Climate change, obesity and mental unrest is the prognosis. The cause? Lack of presence.

Anxiety lives in the future and depression in the past. Neither can exist in the present. When we are present and we notice what is happening to our bodies, to our society, to our planet, then we have the best chance of changing our direction. With love. With compassion.

So chuck a log on the fire of your slow burning passion. Look after your temple and reconnect with your being. Our natural path is one of connection and interconnection, sustainability and abundance. Follow it and you’ll find the real pot of gold.

Do you agree with me? Do you think I’m way off? I’d love to read your thoughts on this.