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Dear <<First Name>>

I am often asked how I stay positive whilst dealing with so much bad news. Personally I have gone past positive and negative, hence duality thinking. I think this is at the root of the runaway train we now find ourselves on. Whilst the motto was to ‘stay positive’ we were compelled to ignore those facts which would not please others in the sharing. And so the train gains momentum, whilst we politely smile, organise another sporting event, chase after balls together.

It seems the top rule in our culture is to be ‘positive.’ If not, we are easily rejected, or otherwise punished. This is part of our programming from childhood. If we were sad or angry, we were not good enough. Only certain emotions were rewarded. Half of them we have to swallow or hide. Many mental health issues arise from this.

Once we realise how we are trapped by this ‘power of positive thinking’ since old Norman Vincent Peale’s days, then we can find the door to that cage.  Authenticity is the new spirituality, not pretending to be cool. If we believe in the truth and embrace that, then we can make a valuable contribution to humanity.

The big fear is of that looming depression that needs to be avoided. In accepting escalating climate change – and all the other injustices in the world - we work through the entire process of grief. Much of it is hard, and depression is part of the process. However, you don’t get stuck at that point. You can move through and find a new humanity, even loving community, at the end. A huge appreciation of life – indeed the reverence, which is the founding motivation for the Green Times.

“When the mind is present in the heart, we call it happiness.”
(Betty Sue Flowers in the foreword to Healing and the Mind by Bill Moyers.)

Being present to the heart means honouring all energies emanating from inside – each one a messenger we need to welcome and learn from. These guide us on the journey of healing a wounded world, and ourselves at the same time. We ARE the environment. Following my heart is a fascinating journey of all extremes and subtleties – all contained in grace.

Are you feeling lost about the way forward? What is the best way to survive, respond, change, lead?



Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.

-David Wagoner

Enjoy the read, please comment, share and contribute.
With love

Elma and the team

PS. Remember to keep up with the green events on our calendar and follow us on Facebook.

Gin trap leopard death a tragic case of self-defense

CapeNature would like to tell their side of the story published recently on the leopard who lost his life after being caught in a gin trap.

Comment sought on draft carbon-offset rules

National Treasury on Monday published the draft regulations on carbon offset in terms of the Draft Carbon Tax Bill for public comment and further consultation.

Sustainable Food Gardening Part 2: Composting for food gardens

Compost is one of the most important tools organic food gardeners can use to improve soil fertility and plant nutrition.

Ethical Coffee Part 1: How to drink a cuppa that matters

How can us coffee drinkers ensure that our drink or purchase is as close to harmless as possible?

Friendlier sprays appropriate for a natural getaway

I’m always amazed when we go away to the countryside and the accommodation doesn’t offer an all-natural air freshener.

A historic day on the path toward clean oceans

Boyan Slat’s ambitious plan to rid the world’s oceans of plastic has taken another step towards reality with its first prototype to be tested at sea.

Record number of people killed for protecting the environment

It is a sad day when the very people who deserve medals for protecting the earth – environmental heroes – are being murdered instead.

Add your support to the largest marine protection zone ever

The largest swath of protected ocean ever could be created in weeks, simply with Obama’s signature.

Scoping accepted for Natal fracking

Despite many strong objections, the Petroleum Agency of South Africa­ has accepted the fracking scope report submitted by Rhino Oil and Gas.

Training in waste sector empowers entrepreneurs

There are numerous opportunities for work in the green economy  and young and old need to be trained to utilise those.

African farmers sold out by secret deal on plant variety protection

“Harmonisation’ is the new term used for the removal of African farmers’ rights to survive by saving their own seeds as has been done over millenia. This is also the term used for removing our rights to natural and traditional medicines.

Greenland ice melt goes into overdrive after record heat wave

In 2016, Greenland has seemingly been on a mission to prove that it, too, can experience truly warm weather of the sort that is typically confined to far more temperate areas.

Catapulting ourselves out of the Holocene


“What is happening right now is we are catapulting ourselves out of the Holocene, which is the geological epoch that human civilisation has been able to develop in, because of the relatively stable climate."

Climate change making crops toxic and leaving livestock diseased


The intersection of environmental and human health is a complex and increasingly congested node. The traffic reports certainly tend toward the discouraging.

Company environmental disclosures often hide bad things


The Centre for Environmental Rights has highlighted the many problems associated with voluntary governance codes and voluntary sustainability initiatives.

Nigeria leads the way promoting ridesharing in Africa


We are thrilled that Nigeria is now the first country in Africa to make a significant step forward towards building ridesharing into their transportation policies.

Why climate change needs 60,000 artists to tell its story


Climate information is still often confusing, unengaging and absent from the wider public discourse.

Another gin trap casualty: threatened leopard needlessly killed


The Police was present and so was a veterinarian that attempted, unsuccessfully, to dart the leopard, said the Landmark Leopard and Predator Project of SA.

Green jobs the answer this Environment Month


In recognition of National Environment Month, leaders in the green building sector have highlighted the industry’s potential to address both climate change and unemployment in South Africa.

UK solar eclipses coal power over month for first time


According to analysts at Carbon Brief, solar power produced more energy than coal for the first time in the UK last month.

France floods: Louvre to close as Seine rises further


The world’s most visited museum, the Louvre in Paris, was forced to close after heavy rains rose water levels five metres above normal.

Can human urine replace chemical fertilizers?


A new project aims to test human urine as a replacement for chemical fertilizers. Urine contains nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium — essential plant nutrients usually mined from the earth or the air for agricultural use.

Increased extreme weather predicted due to Arctic climate change


The effects of climate change on the Arctic — including melting ice and sea level rise — may possibly alter weather patterns in the northern hemisphere.

Extreme weather may raise toxin levels in food, scientists warn


As they struggle to deal with more extreme weather, a range of food crops are generating more of chemical compounds that can cause health problems for people and livestock who eat them, scientists have warned.

World Oceans Day: Healthy Oceans – Healthy Planet


As we celebrate our marine treasures this World Oceans Day, UNESCO are also reflecting on the work needed to sustain them as sea levels rise and the water grows warmer and more acidic.

Ethiopian farmers made a desert bloom again


Ethiopia is working hard at making their land more resilient to drought. If we are going to adapt to our changing world, it’s experiments like these that will show us the way.

Lack of quality material highlights need for waste separation


Many are worried about our most visible form of pollution – that of plastic. We know that some plastic is recycled in SA, but are we winning?

SA sends 300 firefighters to help battle Canadian blaze


South Africa sent 300 firefighters to fight a 900km wildfire in Canada earlier this month.

No time for nuclear risks with climate wolf at the door


“...we are 5 minutes to midnight in terms of the climate plot," said former Greenpeace head Kumi Naidoo at his opening speech during Way Beyond Nuclear briefings in Cape Town.

The future belongs to sustainable brands


The need for innovation in the responsible design of plastic packaging was discussed recently during a workshop at the Sustainable Brands conference in Cape Town.
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