Sustainable and environment-related causes have gotten a lot of attention lately, and for good reason. Some see this as a fad or a craze, as if it were some “health swing” that happens every decade. The real reason this is becoming more popular is that the environment (which we as a species still occupy) is in need of relief, shall we say, from the pressures humankind is putting on it. Nonetheless, our civilization, which has carried on in its mad drive for material profit at an accelerated growth since the Industrial “Revolution”, seems to be at odds with the very place we call home, and, ironically, represents the reserve of natural resources with which Industry must make business happen. Not all businesses or people think this way, and it’s not necessary to link making a buck with this rapacious speed with which we’re eating up reserves and polluting what’s left. There’s a lot of talk about the Triple Bottom Line which amounts to People, Planet, and Profit. I’d like to point out the need to switch thinking, even though it’s nice alliteration, to think of it more as People – Planet – Financial with Profit (actual) being the meeting of these three concepts. In my opinion, actual profit is not achieved until your business creates gains in all three.
If we are going to re-define profit altogether, we need new profit modeling software that allows businesses, individuals and organizations to track, record, and publish their efforts results in real time.
Most of us would agree that cities are a huge source of pollution. Generally, most of the junk in the air, waters, and land comes from urban areas, where the greatest concentrations of humans are gathered. This leads some to believe that the best way to “get sustainable” is to move to the country, where things aren’t so crowded and the potential and space exists to do projects that nurture the Earth and grow food. In reality, if there was a mass exodus of people from the cities currently, the countryside would be destroyed by urban sprawl in no time. This process of people leaving the gray city slate for the forested green of the country could explain how urban sprawl actually occurs. Rather than entertain potentially destructive notions in the hope of making a dent in the problem, turn the problem to its source for solutions. Cities are hubs of communication, the home to millions who want to see green where they live; they don’t want to have to leave to have their cake and eat it too. They want to green their cities, and why shouldn’t they? Introducing the movement to improve the ecology in the most ecologically destitute places on Earth, turning some of the world’s biggest cities into resplendent emerald attractions that bring even more residents, commerce, and tourists.
Do you have plants to water? Do you grow food in a dry region? Don’t throw out those recyclable containers! Jars, bottles, and cartons of all kinds can be used to literally pull water out of the air, and keep it from flying away. Water is a polar molecule – it attracts to itself magnetically. Also, it makes a great heat sink, cooling down your plants in the hot dry summer. If you have taken a look at plants in the morning dew, you will notice that moisture tends to stick around established plants – why? Part of it has to do with the moisture in the plant fixing more moisture from the air. Have you ever seen the water droplets on the side of a cold bottle of water form before anyone has opened it? That’s moisture in the air that’s forming on the bottle due to the cold, and a little bit due to the electromagnetic bonds all water molecules feel to each other. “Plant” jars and bottles at the base of your plants to help pull moisture out of the air, keeping them alive and well – and to help keep water from evaporating out of your soil. On a grand scale, think of the effect this could have to help fix liquid fresh water in areas that are being desertified, or where we need to reforest, but it’s hard to get liquid water out to every tree in the rehabilitation zone. Passive condensation tech like this could be part of a toolkit for survival in the parched 21st century, especially with drought from climate change. Just fill any water-tight container with a fitting lid to the brim and bury it 3/4 in the Earth. Compare the results between plants with passive moisturizing or without. Let us know!
Many of us would accept it as an axiom that we are all interconnected. Now for some reason this isn’t readily apparent to just everyone yet, possibly because it isn’t always obvious. It takes some viewing through a layer or two of perspective, but ultimately we are connected infinitely in innumerable ways. From the second we emerge into the world, we are utterly dependent upon other humans, our forebears and others, for survival. Without that help, and the help of others throughout life, we would literally die. Throughout life it’s not so clear-cut as it is for an infant, but without the interaction with others we would be lost. The “lone wolf” idea, where it comes to humans, is not applicable – for that matter, neither is it for wolves. We sometimes get overwhelmed with toxic human relationships that no longer serve our growth, and without the maturity of sight that comes with experience it’s easy enough to project all of humanity onto the relationships we’ve had so far. Ideally, we should move forward in a generally upward direction, improving ourselves and our relationships with time. Unfortunately, often enough, this isn’t what happens in experience – many of us tend to project our hopes, dreams, fears and demons onto others and get angry when other individuals don’t accept our ideas of fairness. Either way, we are teaching each other and learning from each other at all times, for better or for worse. It’s a two-way street, to be fair: the individual usually ahead in age is in the position to offer help, in exchange for the ability to teach. The individual in a position of learning and needing material help has the opportunity to learn, teach, and provide service. In turn, everybody helps each other in a teach-learn-serve triangle of relationship.
A cannabis user doesn’t necessarily have to be the one writing this. This is an appeal for the legitimate use of cannabis as a personal spiritual sacrament to connect to the living world. It’s for those among us who use cannabis as a way to connect to a deeper reality that this world doesn’t always connect to. There are various uses for every thing under the sun, and the focus of something tends to be its dominant use – and thus, the focus on the use of cannabis as either a way to have fun, relax, or heal. There is less focus on the use that the place of its origin recognizes, as “all of the above” but very importantly a way to transcend the material world and connect to a deeper spirituality. This is a very Indian (we’re talking Hindu, not Native American) way of thinking and for various reasons has deep discord with the dominant thinking of the West which is very materialist. I’m trying not to make this sound too cliche because obviously this is the subject of countless riffs on this divide, but the important part is this – one recognizes that there is a greater mass to creation than what meets the eye, and looks for it – the other is consumed by the reality of “what is” and what we’re able to objectively demonstrate in a laboratory or on a balance sheet. Thus, the deep divide over cannabis. The actual history of the world shows that several ancient cultures, many of whom are still around, have used this herb for thousands of years. (Not that it matters to those already convinced it makes you “dumb” or “unmotivated”, recently they also found it in William Shakespeare’s tobacco pipe..) One of these cultures is alive and well, a cradle of civilization whose written works are some of the oldest known and many of whose modern members are word-renowned for their scientific, medical and spiritual knowledge.
Don’t ask yourself “should cannabis be legalized” for this or that purpose, ask yourself “why is it illegal in the first place?” Honestly, is it because it’s “dangerous”, “addictive”, and leads to the decay of brain cells and motivation – according to the same FDA that regards wholesome breakfast cereal like Frosted Flakes as more “nutritional” than an avocado? Is it because it causes social conditions like depression, mania, schizophrenia, or any number of other labels the pharmaceutical industrial complex has come up with to describe humans reacting to the craziness of the world? Is it the cause of so much social decay and economic depravity as observed in places like the third world – or, our domestic version, the inner city?
The photoelectric effect occurs when light particles interact with matter, especially semiconductors like silicon, producing a flow of electrons that can be used as electricity.
I am making power in my backyard with microscopic pond algae. Rather, they are making the power, as I believe they’ve been doing since the Jurassic age, and I am just beginning to gather it, test it, and put it to use. Diatoms are surface phytoplankton (plant-like photosynthetic microbes in the surface of water) that are mostly made of silica (glass). Even though algae is being cultivated for fuel sources lately, this is not that kind of energy. There is no combustion here. The effect I’m observing I believe to be based on quantum physics in the interaction between light and silicon via the photoelectric effect, the same interaction that produces power in conventional solar panels. There is some precedent for this coming from moss – and theoretically any plant can put out energy that can be used to power light-duty applications.