Melanie Griffin, a former National Director of the Sierra Club, joins Jeff Lilly in an exclusive interview to share some personal reflections on her experiences working in the environmental movement, exploring the ways that science, technology, the economy and social media has shaped the conversation about ecology and environmentalism over the past few decade, as well as what the future of environmentalism might hold as a new generation grows up with the global warming crisis.
We explore the significance of sacred animals as guides, gods and omens. News of the birth of a rare white buffalo stirs the Lakota community in the wake of a series of tragic deaths earlier in the summer, and we explore the importance of cattle and other domesticated animals in human history and our relationship with the natural world. Then, Ali and Jeff each tell the stories of their own encounters with animal guides and how such relationships can shape our ever-changing understanding of ourselves.
We let the spirit move us as we explore our relationship to the natural world through movement, exercise and travel. From the benefits of walking to the problem with parking lots, from jogging robots to the ecology of immigration, how we move through the landscape changes how we relate to the world around us, both physically and spiritually. In our Pro extension, we take a look at travel from a religious perspective as we explore the tradition of sacred pilgrimage and how it connects us more deeply with our gods and each other.
We look at mysterious earthworks that can only be seen from the skies, ancient ruins discovered in the Middle East, sunken cities lost to a rising sea thousands of years before anyone had ever heard of “global warming” — and, for a playful dose of woo — crop circles! What do all of these have in common? They offer us glimpses into how the human community has lived and worked with the land to craft sites of sacred meaning and aesthetic beauty, both in modern times and in the ancient past.
This week, we look at the earth beneath our feet — the landscape and the rocks themselves that form the foundations of our lives. We get intimate with stones and do some earth-shattering geology, we take a look at artists bringing their work back down to earth, and we explore that age-old question of nature versus nurture to discover just how deep environmental influences run. In our Pro extension, we guide our conversation to the inner realms, exploring landscapes of the imagination and the inner world of spirit.
We explore the ways that modern technology is wearing away at the boundaries between our bodies and our environment and how embracing our habit-forming instincts can help us craft better lives for ourselves. We also look at the human body as a sacred landscape in its own right, home to a teeming microbiome of bacteria that have helped us survive and adapt for thousands of years.