Alastair McIntosh rejoins to explore climate change through Ram Dass’ lens of karma & grace, reframing it as a dangerous opportunity to cultivate a resilient, loving, interconnected future.
Writer, speaker, and activist, Alastair McIntosh has been described by BBC TV as “one of the world’s leading environmental campaigners.” A pioneer of modern land reform in Scotland, he helped bring the Isle of Eigg into community ownership. His work focuses on advancement in human ecology, land reform, urban regeneration, and spiritual activism. He just released a new book, Riders on the Storm: The Climate Crisis and the Survival of Being. Learn more about Alastair’s work at AlastairMcIntosh.com
Karma, Grace, & Climate Crisis
Raghu and Alastair begin the conversation by expounding on one of the recent Ram Dass Here & Now podcast episodes, ‘Stories on Karma,’ in which Raghu shares a–now infamous–chain of stories from India, elucidating the question, “Are karma and grace one?” The two explore this question through the lens of Ram Dass, Maharajji, and Siddhi Ma; before zooming the inquiry out to a planetary scale, applying it’s insights to the climate crisis and survival of humanity.
“There is a thing that is guiding us through to become free so that we can be of some use to our fellow humans through kindness, compassion, love, etc. That thing is grace.” – Raghu Markus
To begin the conversation, Alastair & Raghu discuss the Ram Dass podcast “Stories on Karma.” Refresh your connection, on Ep. 170 of Here & Now
Cause & Effect, Glorify & Enjoy (11:54)
How do we let the crises of coronavirus and climate change effect us? Do we throw up our hands in despair? Do we give way to conspiracy theories? Or do we look to guides like Ram Dass and traditions like Bhakti and Buddhism, which teach that karma–cause and effect–is going to happen, but then show us how to ride those waves? Alastair and Raghu trade stories exploring individual and collective karma in regards to our relationship to ourselves, our fellow humans, and this planet.
“We are brought into this world to glorify the divine presence and enjoy it forever. If we don’t glorify, we’re not going to enjoy it. If you don’t arrange the flowers, you’re not going to see the flowers perfectly. In so many of our traditions we have this beauty, if we develop the eyes to see.” – Alastair McIntosh
For more Alastair and Raghu exploring the intersection of spirituality and environmental activism, tune into Ep. 296 of Mindrolling
The Work of Love: Cultivating Resilience (25:35)
Digging into the science behind climate change and the dire realities of food and water scarcity which threaten our security on this planet if we leave our industrial momentum unchecked, Alastair and Raghu offer ways to cultivate the wise hope of loving resilience to help guide ourselves through this planetary, initiatory challenge, and into the safe, bonding depths of loving, harmonious human community.
“We’re not going to save ourselves and the Earth purely through conventional technical, economic, political ways of doing things. We are only going to create a sane future–a bright future for human kind, and for the regeneration of other species and their habitats–if we deepen into community with one another and the planet, and that means opening up to the work of love.” – Alastair McIntosh
Uncover our timely new 16 hour virtual retreat on the topic of loving resilience, featuring BHNN teachers & friends: Download the Cultivating Wise Hope Retreat
Images via Alastair McIntosh and @MargJohnsonVA on Twenty20