Stephen Buhner Is Listening to the Plants

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Over the course of his many years of service to humanity, the modern great sage, Adi Da Samraj, made it abundantly clear that this chronic thinking mind is not a virtue at all, but rather a dissociative, egoic imbalance with very real personal and collective consequences. This modern thinking mind, he wrote, is inherently reactive in nature, arising “From A Non-conceptual emotional-physical State of Doubt.”  This very disposition, he wrote in The Enlightenment of The Whole Body, actively dissociates us from reality.

The scientific, rationalist, intellectual and technological core-culture of our social order is the secret esoteric ‘Mother Church’ of the left brained congregation of ordinary people. It is through the growing and pervasive influence of this exclusively left brained esoteric or most highly developed core of our verbal culture that the holistic, intuitive, psychic, or right brained communion with the conditions and the Reality of our world is being gradually eliminated as a possibility.

This world of ours is not ultimately material—which means the separative, conceptual mind we make out of all our chronic thinking is not our true identity. We inhere in the context of light, being and consciousness, not matter. The presumed boundaries between rock and sky and man and nature are not real. They do not truly inhere in things themselves. We are not really separate from anything. This understanding, once it truly takes hold, profoundly changes our relationship to our natural circumstance and to each other. Stuck in the chronic mode of thinking, we fear what we see as separate from ourselves, and so we try, through all our misguided means, to control what is in front of us—whether it’s nature, other cultures, or each other. But to do so, as we can see in the signs of trouble all around us, can only end in destruction.

In The Lost Language of Plants, which was published a couple of years before Secret Teachings, Buhner offers his reality consideration on modern man’s management of the planet. The story, as we all know by now, is not good. Among other things, we are awash in toxins. Our drinking water is full of manufactured residues and pharmaceuticals. Nowadays, we all practice hormone replacement therapy, whether we like it or not, every time we drink from the tap. The chemicals we have come to rely upon to support our modern lifestyle, Buhner writes, do not just disappear when we throw them in the trash:

In their final manufactured form the environmental impact from pharmaceuticals continues through excretion, hospital wastes streams, and landfill dumping of expired drugs. Pharmaceuticals are inserting significant quantities of highly bioactive chemicals into soils and water throughout the world.

In his important study, The Hundred Year Lie, Randall Fitzgerald gave us a full picture of global toxicity. The Lost Language of Plants paints a similar picture. The indestructible synthetic drugs we are pumping into the earth are disrupting a delicate natural symbiosis upon which human life depends. They are also damaging the natural growth pattern of human beings. We have already disrupted our natural habitat to an alarming degree. As Buhner writes, the time for correction is now.
Looking at how the problems and excesses of our time relate to the very stuff of life, The Lost Language of Plants provides an essential understanding of where we are at as a species, and what can be done to arrest our slide. Buhner deserves to be read. Right understanding is the beginning of change. 

As Buhner reminds us, plants provide the best foods and medicines for man and the earth he inhabits. Plant habitats must be preserved. The whole survival struggle of plants in nature can be found in the chemistry they create. The bioactive chemicals that result—whether nutritional, antiseptic, antibiotic, or anti-inflammatory—can be transferred to humans. After all, we too are a part of nature, and confront a similar survival struggle as plants do. To illustrate the point, Buhner points out the wonders of plant terpenes, a large group of hydrocarbons found in the oils of plants. Terpenes, he writes, “purify the air, modulate plant emergence, enhance the respiration of the plant community, feed into mycelial networks, and play an essential role in the formation of humic acid.”

According to Buhner, this is prime evidence of how plants are, by their nature, working for the greater good. Plants, he says, “exist not for themselves alone; they create and maintain the community of life on Earth, they produce the chemistries all life needs to live, and they heal other living organisms that are ill.”

But for plants’ many interwoven functions to be able to work their restorative magic, Buhner writes, balance needs to be restored to the environments in which they exist:
Ecosystems, to be healthy, must be composed of many plants that

are working together in such close-knit communal relationships. There is in such systems, always a diversity of plant species and a diversity of
functional types. The larger the number of plants with diverse chemistries that occupy the largest number of ecosystem functional categories, the more vital and healthier the ecosystem.

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