Tuesday, May 25, 2021


Jewell's Happy Trails

Holy cow, I don't know why I am doing this. I click into YouTube, and what pops up? All those professional speakers. People more knowledgeable than me, more experienced, more, more. So why would anyone listen to my babble? That is a phenomenon every artist must face—putting their work out there, knowing it doesn't match the standards set by people who have practiced for 20 + years.

However, we all have a voice and a gift, and perhaps my saying whatever I have to say will spark something in someone.

 If we wait until we are perfect (ha), we will never do it. And so we begin.


I have two forest walks filmed so far where I talk about this mystery we call life. My focus is called The Law of Attraction, although I wish I had another name for it. Guess I feel the title is cliché; however, here's my take on it.


Please go to: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3pPWKU7N1VvVAHOClUSreA


And then here is the blog post I wrote for this week.


Blog May 25 21 Pet Your Reptile


In this age, we speak of enlightenment—whatever in the heck that means…


Maybe it means we have come to understand that we were born a perfect human and live the life of a human. The cliché is that we are spiritual beings having a human experience. It might be cliché, but I agree with the statement. We learn along the way, and maybe enlightenment is living in peace and fulfillment. It probably comes after we have walked the pot-holed road filled with boulders.


All along, we are fighting our evolution.


My sister used to get agitated when I used the word evolution, for she thought it negated creationism.


I'm not going there. Evolution simply means change over time—big deal. Things change, and we have built into us certain behaviors that were undoubtedly a result of evolution, aka, what worked at the time, aka, driven by natural selection.


Fast forward. We still have behaviors built into us that do not work to our benefit. Sorry. Millions of years built us.


For example:


Fear. It benefited us to run or fight in the face of danger. However, now it is thrown at us regularly. It sells. (An adrenalin rush.)


The hunter phenomenon. It was necessary to feed the tribe. Killing for sport or war is counterproductive. (But it is another adrenalin rush.)


Some native hunters revered the land and the animals. Sorry, we must kill to eat, but that's the way this earth is set up. (Vegetarians, charge ahead. The cow doesn't kill the grass; she mows it. Most fruits and vegetables would rot if we didn't eat them. (My refrigerator attests to that.)


Distain or fear of strangers or people who look different from us. Well, what can I say about that? Used to be you needed to fear marauders. They would come and take your wife, your children, your animals, and your land. Then there was the class system—money and title meant you were better than the common man. And then there were slaves. Not a pretty picture. 


Nationalism. Now we are World People. Used to be, we had to protect what was ours for the same reason we feared strangers. However, we still fight over land.


Judgment: I've heard more people fault themselves for judging than I can count. Of course, we size up people to determine if they are a friend or foe. It's natural. We pick and choose who we want to hang out with or who we want to marry. Where this goes wrong is when the ego gets involved. Wanting to be better than those others we are judging. We are taught competition, not cooperation. (I've heard that Navaho children gave teachers a hard time because they wanted to help each other on exams. They couldn't understand why they had to keep their eyes on their own paper.)


Belief systems. Probably beliefs give us comfort. It provides us with some understanding of the way the world works—even if it's faulty. It allows us to find others who agree, thus giving us bonding and friends.


When we look back, we realize we carry baggage from our past, genes, nurturing, propaganda, etc. Yes, we want to look ahead, but not to forget what made us. And we want to take with us lessons learned. We developed a big thinking brain, a brain over a brain over a brain. That reptilian brain is at the base of your spine, is hungry, scared, angry, and horny. The midbrain is responsible for memory, temperature, heart rate, swallowing, sneezing, among many other things. Then we wrapped it up in a pretty package, the Cerebral cortex, the place where miracles happen.


We carry quite a package.


"Why did the chicken cross the road?"

"Because his reptilian brain told him to."


The Reptile Brain also is where repeating patterns such as rituals, automatic responses without conscious thought, predictability, fear of the unknown, fear of losing a job, spouse, home, dying, lack of money, and lack of resources. All are anxiety and trauma responses. It is where racism arises. 


"The lizard brain is the reason you're afraid, the reason you don't do all the art you can, the reason you don't ship when you can. The lizard brain is the source of resistance."—Seth Godin.


 In The Dragons of Eden, Speculations on the Evolution of Human Intelligence, Carl Sagan wrote:


 "Despite occasional welcome exceptions, this seems to me to characterize a great deal of modern human bureaucratic and political behavior."


The way to deal with the Reptilian brain is to realize when it has taken over.


Reptilian brains often label people as crazy or unstable who willingly take a leap of faith and go for it, like quitting their job and moving to another country.


These people acted despite their reptilian brain – allowing them to experience life as it was meant to be, free and boundless.


Eckart Tolle has a trick to calm the reptilian brain:


Sit quietly, hands in lap, and think of your hands. Notice you know they are there without looking. Focus on them, and soon you will feel them tingle. You will feel energy in them. After that, you can move to other parts of your body. And you can use this at night when you want to go to sleep.


You are giving your reptilian brain a pause. 


After writing this post, I understood my reason for doing the forested trail walks and talks.


Let’s say you are an artist, and I believe everybody is. To perfect your craft, you practice. You show up every day.


I view this travel through life the same way. You show up every day—consciously. You find things that uplift. You look for the good. You find ways to still your mind chatter; you pull yourself back into alignment when you stray off the path.


I would love to have you join me on Jewell's Happy Trails. The second video will be up before long. It's better. (Try not to listen to my hugging and puffing in this first one.) 


You readers are special to me.


Love, Jewell, aka Jo, aka Joyce


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 P.S. After I get 100 subscribers I can have a personal URL which will be easier to remember.