Freeing Ourselves from Aristocratic Rule: Francis Moore Lappe Cultivates an Ecology of Mind!

Francis Moore Lappe

Francis Moore Lappe


Within the human body as well as the cosmos, what a particular cell becomes is in relationship to the needs of the whole. As Christ is said to come for the sake of us all, then so do we all come for the sake of us all. Yes, our lives DO have meaning! We are here to support life. All of it!

Who is the Never Ending Story inherent in the great myths if not us? As Hindus often say when awakening to Brahmin, “I AM THAT!”

Have you ever read or seen the movie, Never Ending Story? It’s on Youtube if you haven’t.The theme signifies that the reader reading the story is the story being read! (The link is at the end of this article)

Yes, we read scriptures, myths, objectified news and process poetry and it’s all about us. It’s all about all of us, including everything else other then us that is striving, thriving and dying on this little blue ball we call a planet. Oh, is a planet a plane, a dimension of experience flying about the Milky Way? What plane – planet are you playing on?

Plane, planet, and play can be seen as one word? Do we define play as in fun or play as in an act upon the stage of the cosmos? Does it have to be either or or…..perhaps it can be either BOTH / AND or…

Are you happy with the plane you are flying through the Cosmos on? Would you like to change from this dimension evolving a wasteland rule of corporatization and the politician’s mind numbing masturbation?

To change, we need to go to the foundations. First step is to get our hands out of our pants and take a serious look at our misconceptions of life, our errors of thought; and second we need to evolve a more appropriate conception of who we are in Nature.

We are the whole of life expressed as a part. In us all is ALL! Thus a developing fetus begins by looking like a fish, a snail, etc. Furthermore, he goes through the mathematical process of Genesis 1 of the Bible, which is called the Flower of Life. What Life? All of Life.

Again: we are the Never Ending Story. When Genesis 1 of the Bible speaks to creation, it speaks to YOURS and MY conception. Consider the following Youtube video:

More than being a part, we take part in life. We are participants more so than particles. Unfortunately, we have been conditioned by The Man to be particles. And what are the ramifications of this? Who benefits in our thinking ourselves to be more particle than participant? It surely isn’t us, is it?

As you look at the world, do you think we human beings are in crises with our wars, sense of alienation, and in the destruction of the planet?

Are we at the crisis point yet? Crisis interestingly is defined in Chinese lettering as “Dangerous Opportunity.” Is it time for us to take this opportunity in order be born into another level of being?

“Opportunity for what?” we may ask. “Evolution,” I would answer back. But, evolution is a harsher way to go than shopping till you dropping or sitting in front of a “boob tube” all day long.   Yes, lets keep our selves mesmerized and hypnotized as our Souls and the planet dies.

Regarding evolution, author Francis Moore Lappe focuses on how things interrelate to enhance life, which is the most effective antidote to fear and despair.

Lappe has written a book titled, Ecomind: Changing the Way We Think, to Create the World We Want. This thesis of Lappe speaks to our evolution. But, the cost is that we need to let go of the worldview that we have.

Can we do that?

Frances Moore Lappee has identified ecologically devastating thought traps in her book Ecomind: Changing the Way We Think, to Create the World We Want. There is that Word made flesh thing again! To change the way we think we need to challenge and rid ourselves of what we ARE thinking. It is then, when we change, that the world begins to change.

Remember in Genesis all those “Let there be” statements which came to be? What is YOUR “Let there be” statement?

Did you know this points towards magic? Magic is in essence casting a spell on something to get a desired effect. Our words do matter. What has our wording of the world gotten us? Has it elicited the absurdity of corporate standardization that is made fun of in scenes like this?

This speaks to what we call black magic. Black magic is harmful to most of the creatures in the cartoon…well, except the monkey and cat.

What fundamental thought traps can you identify that get us caught up in pollution, constant warfare, and the devolution of our species, homo rationed? Why do we remain rationed?

Lappee identifies several of these traps that ration us in our rational minds. Lets go there with her!

Thought Trap # 1: No Growth is the answer

Thought Leap # 1: “Since what we’ve been calling growth leads to so much waste, lets call it what it is-an economics of waste and destruction. Then, let’s probe why. Dropping the distracting “growth verses-no-growth” debate, we can embrace qualitative notions of where we want to go, choosing terms like flourishing and genuine progress” that focuses our minds on enhancing health, happiness, ecological vitality, resiliency and the dispersion of social power.”

Burl’s thought leap: In the new Genesis, I believe the command needs to be “Let there be peace, love and understanding.”

Thought Trap # 2: Consumer Society is THE problem

Thought Leap #2: Let’s not confuse symptoms with cause. “Consumerism” – too much stuff – is largely a symptom of forces denying us choice. Let’s go for real choice as we delink what’s become an automatic association between buying things on the one hand, and luxury comfort and enjoyment on the other. Together, let’s imagine and create real luxury-rich stimulating and beautiful lives honoring the laws of Nature.

Yes, fast food buffs, have it your way at McDonalds is not a real choice. Nor does it speak to our richness. Rather, it speaks to our poverty. Fast food is simply a joke that has Ronald McDonald laughing all the way to the bank. And, what fool is being laughed at? Those of us eating a Big Mac!

Thought Trap #3: We’ve hit the limits of a finite Earth. We must power down to live within the limits of a finite planet.

Thought Leap #3: Because most people know they weren’t invited to the Too Good Party, the message of limits falls flat. An effective and ecologically attuned goal is NOT about more or less. Moving from fixation on quantities, our focus shifts to what brings health, ease, joy, creativity—more life! These qualities arise as we align with the rules of Nature so that our real needs are met as the planet flourishes.

Thought Trap #4: We must overcome human Nature to save the planet. (Burl Hall’s reflection: In our world order, we are not supposed to be who we are by Nature, which is a violation of Nature. To violate who we are is a violation of God who goes by various names of the Self such as Brahmin, Yahweh and Nature. Remember God didn’t get “pissed” because Adam and Eve took clothes off but because they wanted to put clothes on. Being nude is being Natural…got it?)

Thought Leap #4: Sure, we can be selfish, fixated on material gain, and narrowly competitive. But here’s the key to our future: We’ve also evolved deep capacities for cooperation, empathy, fairness, efficacy, meaning and creativity. We can’t change human Nature, but that’s ok. We can change the norms and rules of our societies to keep negative human potential in check and to elicit these powerful, positive qualities we most need now. Let’s focus these with laser intensity.

Thought Trap #5: To save our planet, we have to override humanities natural resistance to rules. Because humans- especially Americans-naturally hate rules and love freedom, we have to find the best ways to coerce people to do the right thing to save the planet

Thought Leap #5: The Nature of Nature is rules, and humans love rules that enhance our sense of belonging and give our lives structure, shape and meaning. They work and take off fast when people feel engaged in shaping them, and they make sense to us. Knowing all this, we can go beyond rules that limit harm and establish rules that avoid harm to begin with.

Burl’s reflection. When I changed from eating the typical American diet of fast foods and began buying locally grown food and, even, growing a lot of the food I eat myself, I experienced a deeper connection to life, as well as loosing well over a hundred and fifty pounds. Yes, I was under the typical American diet at well over 340 pounds. Today, I go between 180 and 220 depending on whether my Chrone’s disease is active.

Thought Trap #6: Humans have lost the connection to Nature. Now thoroughly urbanized and technology addicted we’ve become so disconnected from Nature that it’s pretty hopeless to think most people could ever become real environmentalists.

Thought Leap #6: We can count on one thing for sure: Humans evolved to love Nature. So, city dwellers, too, can and are rediscovering that natural connection, finding that it enhances our health, learning, and fun. As we reconnect with Nature in all these ways and more, it’s likely that support for public action to heal the natural world will grow too. (Burl’s reflection: Nature means Essence and thus loving Nature is to love one’s Self for one’s Self is one’s Essence. The issue of shame regarding nudity is about non-acceptance of who we are by Nature. Shame and judgment are the sin of humankind.)

Thought Trap #7: It’s too late! Human beings have so far overshot what Nature can handle that we’re beyond the point of no return. Democracy has failed—its taking way to long to face the crisis. And because corporations hold so much power, real democracy, answering to us and able to take decisive action is a pipe dream.

Thought Leap #7: It’s not too late for life. And it’s flourishing depends on democracy attuned to all we now know of Nature and to what history teaches: that centralized power cannot lead to the sustained goal of the whole.

Plus, today’s crises are so interrelated, vast in scope, and complex that solutions depend on tapping the direct experience, common sense, and passion of people most affected. And, that’s billions of us! With the buy in that comes with having a real voice, most of us want to contribute to solutions that turn the planet to life. So, the Mother of All Issues is removing the power of concentrated wealth from public decision-making and infusing citizen’s voices instead. It’s beginning in surprising places.

Sounds similar to Rob Kall’s “Bottom Up” idea to me.

Francis ends with a chapter titled “Thinking Like an Ecosystem.” In honoring her wonderful work, I’m going to end with what I said at the beginning:

A particular thesis about the planet Earth that I personally like is James Lovelock’s “Gaia Hypothesis.” In short, this thesis states that the planet operates as a singular organism. In order to wrap my head around what Lovelock is saying, I tend to meditate on fetal development where cells become parts of various organs based on the needs of the whole.

This is how an ecosystem thinks! Its all for one and one for All!!! What does this mean to us? In essence, we are more than particles, We are participants participating! So, participate! We are more verb than noun, process more so than product. Focusing on products more so than processes has gotten us into a real mess in which extinction rates are high, and the human being is alienated. Products isolate, processes relate and unify.

As if to reinforce my meanderings of mind, there was a book written by a Jewish mystic that was called, “God is a Verb.” To that I would answer, “WE are a Verb.”

Who are we alienated from? Yahweh (I AM) or Nature Herself?

Mm, to say we are focused on the Self is to be focused on the All? As the Three Musketeers put it, “its one for all and all for one.” All and one are truly not separate in our uni-versity or unified versatility.

Dare we deny the wisdom of the Three Musketeers?

To learn more from Francis in an interview with this author and his wife on Envision This!, please visit: <div style=”font-size: 10px;text-align: center;width:400px;”>Discover Culture Internet Radio with <a href=”; rel=”nofollow”>ENVISION THIS</a> on BlogTalkRadio</div>

Francis’ website is at:

The Never Ending Story is available for a cost on Youtube at:

If you are on a deep quest for Truth while also being able to understand the metaphorical (great sound) language of myth, I highly recommend this movie.

God is a Verb can be explored on Amazon. The url is:


Francis with Vandana Shiva

Francis with Vandana Shiva



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