While the Earth Mother awakens from her winter slumber and we step into spring, I wanted to dedicated a playlist to this beautiful planet that we depend on for our survival. She continues to provide and give and we continue to take and take. In my yoga class I challenge each of us to explore the ways that we might give back and support her. She needs our love, she needs our attention, she needs us to wake up.
While geological disasters like earthquakes, volcanoes, rockfalls, landslides and avalanches have stayed more or less constant over the last 20 years, the numbers of climate-related disasters – floods, coastal flooding and storm surge, apocalyptic storms, heat/cold waves, cyclones, drought and wildfires – have dramatically increased. It amazes me how so much of the population cannot see that we are creating these experiences. Denial and ignorance, people and corporations choosing profit over the planet.
Did you know that rainforests are being destroyed at a pace of 8 million hectares per year. They cover less than 3% of the planet and yet they house more species of plants and animals than any other terrestrial ecosystem. 40% of the destruction is turned into pasture for cattle ranching so we can eat our burgers and 20% is turned into large-scale agriculture to produce things like palm oil so we can all eat our Doritos and Kentucky Fried Chicken.
Did you know that both the U.S. Constitution and the Declaration of Independence were drafted on hemp paper? One acre of hemp can produce as much paper as 4 to 10 acres of trees over a 20-year cycle, and hemp stalks only take four months to mature, whereas trees take 20 to 80 years. Converting trees into paper uses large amounts of water, energy, and chemicals and generates vast amounts of air and water pollution. The pulp and paper industry is the fifth largest consumer of energy, accounting for 4 percent of all the world’s energy use.
As I look at the media headlines over this last year I read articles reporting on the 275 million metric tons of plastic waste generated and floating in our oceans, species after species becoming extinct, and of course Standing Rock. It’s not too late for us to turn this all around but each of us has to do our part. As a consumer, pay attention and educate yourself on the companies and corporations you are supporting with your dollar- they will only change if we demand it. Support local and organic as often as possible and question, question everything. Why don’t we let farmers grow hemp? Why would we build another pipeline and position ourselves to depend on oil production and products when environmentally friendly and sustainable energy exists?
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This is by far one of my favorite collections of conscious artists. Xavier Rudd appears three times and could have easily made up the entire playlist alone. His songs incorporate socially conscious themes such as spirituality, humanity, environmentalism and the rights of Aboriginal peoples.
Bruce Cockburn wrote ‘If a Tree Falls’ in 1988, that was 29 years ago and trees are still being clear-cut. It is sad to me that we have not progressed in this area.
Sometimes I really love pulling in covers of my favorite songs. Eleanor McEvoy gives a hauntingly beautiful performance of Marvin Gaye’s ‘ Mercy Mercy Me’ while Lennon & Maisy give a whole new energy in Joni Mitchell’s ‘Big Yellow Taxi’ with their angelic harmonies.
Sample the Playlist
Support the Artists (links to iTunes)
Maneesh De Moor
Lennon & Maisy
Solitudes – Secrets Of The Jungle
Food in the Belly
On & On
Big Yellow Taxi
Relaxing Sounds of Nature
Some yoga teachers covet their playlists but I believe we need to move the music medicine around the planet to support the awakening that is unfolding within each of us. We need to support these beautiful artists so that they can continue producing music that will lift the vibration of the planet. Please share the blog and if you know of some really great songs/artists that need to be included in future playlists, connect with me. Love & Light my friends…
Shri Ananda is a certified Kripalu Yoga teacher, musician, and spiritual filmmaker creating music and stories to help us awaken to who we really are. Shri is a grounded and joyful yoga teacher who invites you to journey inward. His classes promote self-understanding, intuition, and transformation from the inside-out through mindful movement and breath work. Ananda is known for his themed ‘Gentle Spirit Yoga’ classes – combining gentle yoga with spiritual exploration through music . He is presently instructing at Ekahi Yoga Center in Kelowna, British Columbia and hosts retreats around the world.