Ten Ways To Live As If Collapse Is Coming

By Jillian Vriend

Find sustainable sanctuary. In our recently released book Living As If: Embracing Collapse, Healing Through Parts Work, And Taking Action Toward Sustainable Sanctuary (available as a free book at soulfullheart.com), we define sustainable sanctuary in the following way: Sustainable sanctuary is about living in a place that provides the five essentials of our survival: access to our own autonomous (ie. not municipally supplied) source of clean drinking water; humus rich topsoil to grow our own organic food; ability to build our own sustainable and energy efficient shelters (preferably using natural, environmentally friendly, building materials and solar or other natural power source); access to others living in a like-minded way to form a network of community; and a safe, remote location away from a large population base that we can easily defend if we have to. Another key criterion of sustainable sanctuary, beyond these very important basic survival aspects, is that it is a place that feels like your heart and soul home. In the book, we provide a process activity for you to identify how sustainable where you currently live is and if you need to move to another location.

Grow your own organic food. Most people have very limited supplies of food on hand and rely on sometimes daily trips to the grocery store or restaurants to feed themselves, typically eating food that has been shipped from many miles away and is highly processed. Even those who keep gardens usually only grow enough to supplement their diets, not to provide all the food that they and their families need to survive. Our topsoil is being destroyed around the world by industrial agriculture, pesticide use, construction development, and over tilling. This fragile six inch layer means the difference between life and death and in many places it is parched and dying. For people who live in cities, there is no land available to grow on and space provided by community and rooftop gardens is far from adequate. Growing your own garden organically, learning about edible weeds and fruits to forage in your local area, and making connections with others who grow food locally is key not only to survival but also is healthier, less expensive, and tastes better.

Become as physically healthy as possible. Availability of mainstream medical care and medicines will be limited, with supplies of many drugs running out quickly or taken first by looters. Eating a whole foods, mostly plant-based diet of organic food is primary, especially losing weight and engaging in regular exercise, as well as taking care of our teeth while dentists are readily available. Other suggestions are to learn about herbals and other medicinal plants and their uses; learning CPR, first aid basics, and connecting with medical resources to establish a network of care post-collapse.

Learn homesteading skills. This is preferably happening while you are at your sustainable sanctuary out of necessity, but any learning in this area is possible in any setting. Homesteading Skills will be crucial post-collapse such as sewing, cooking anything from scratch and over wood fire; raising chickens or other livestock (if you eat meat); HAM radio communication (not homesteading but pretty critical); beekeeping; woodworking with hand tools; gardening; natural building; how to fix things with limited materials and by hand, etc.

Join a sustainable community or create one out of your neighbours. We are used to living independently and anonymously, especially in the West. Even asking the neighbour for a ‘cup of sugar’ is unlikely these days with daily trips to the grocery store being the norm for most of us. If you live in a small town, you may already experience the gifts of being in a community where people come together in times of challenge and in times of celebration; a community where you know who is safe and who isn’t. Community will be essential in collapse because of how much there is to learn about living sustainably and how much more we will all need each other as support, as a labor team, and to learn from each other. You could choose to live alone but it will be much more difficult to survive and potentially very lonely.

Awaken your emotional consciousness through inner work of some kind. Possessing a high level of emotional maturity, self reflection, and capacity to understand your own emotional reactions will be critical to navigate the coming chaos. Illumination of our shadow (what has been suppressed emotionally in our subconscious) allows us to feel and then heal, freeing up that energy to be in a post-industrial life that will feel quite strange to most of us. Some people just will not have the emotional consciousness to be able to make it through. Our SoulFullHeart work offers a path for descending into the shadow through parts work. We share more about this process on our website at soulfullheart.com and in our book Living As If.

Awaken your spiritual consciousness through devotional work of some kind. Having a personal and direct connection with the Divine provides us with guidance and support during the most difficult and challenging times. Rather than looking to a priest or guru or any kind of middleman, we can experience Divine connection for ourselves through devotional practice, meditation, journaling dialogues, creative visualization journeying, music therapy, and other means. Our SoulFullHeart work offers a path for connecting with the soul guardian aspect of us who provides a direct connection with the Divine in a negotiated way . We share more about this process on our website at soulfullheart.com and in many of our books.

Shift your life from a fiat based currency and dependence on job income to lessening need for money. The collapse of our industrial society will either be directly related to economic collapse or will cause it. Paper money will most likely have little to no value after collapse, while coins and gold may have some. The banking system will also be unavailable and so will your money and any investments that you have. Liquidate your retirement accounts or investments now while you can still get the money and spend it on setting up your sustainable sanctuary while money still spends. Begin now to shift your life focus away from earning money, spending money, and saving money. Simplify your life by selling or giving away things that no longer serve you. Begin to open up to gift economy and giving to others while receiving from others with gratitude.

Assess the relationships in your life for sustainability and intimacy and resonance with collapse. Besides the perceived need for money, one of the biggest obstacles to taking action towards collapse is resistance from family, friends, and mates. Maybe you feel that everyone will think you are ‘crazy’ or ‘paranoid’ or ‘one of those doomsday people.’ Negotiation with parts of you around their fears related to how others perceive them can help with this. If parts of you can feel the solidity in vision and purpose around taking action toward collapse, parts of you can rest into you. It may still be a very emotionally charged time making the transition from being private about collapse to ‘going public.’ Collapse also provides a good kind of catalytic fuel to burn up relationships that are no longer nourishing us or to allow them to arise out of the ashes into something new.

Find inspiring resources on collapse. It has been crucial to educate ourselves about collapse, taking in many different perspectives to allow for a joint consensus feeling to overcome any denial. Educational and inspiring resources about collapse are James Howard Kunstler, Thomas Lewis, Carolyn Baker, Guy Mcpherson, Dmitri Orlov, off-grid.net, collapsenet.com, global research. It has also been helpful to read fiction books portraying collapse in order to feel what it might be like. Some of the books we have enjoyed are: Tribulation by Thomas Lewis, The World Made By Hand series by James Howard Kunstler, The Stand by Stephen King, Survivalist Series by A. American, Survivor Diaries series by Lynn Lamb.

Jillian Vriend is a co-founder of SoulFullHeart Community at an off-grid sustainable sanctuary in Mexico offering immersion retreats and community membership.

The Gift Of Falling On My Butt: Life At El Rancho Blog

body“The body IS wise. I don’t know why more people don’t check in with their bodies more, especially when they have injuries and diseases, but also just to tap into another source of knowledge in their life.” Living As If
By Jillian Vriend

Yes, I fell on my butt this week. Life here at the ranch right now means that there are not very main dry surfaces in which to walk, especially now, during the rainy season, with many of the stone pathways slick with moss from the rain. Before this incident happened, I watched the illuminating and outrageous (meaning causing outrage in a good way at injustice) documentary “Zeitgest”. This was the first movie or TV show that I had watched since coming to the ranch, so, in nine months. Probably not a good choice as it immediately got part of me worked up at the craziness of our industrial world through the film’s no-holds-barred, dismantling examinations of fundamentalist religions, the 9/11 attacks, and the central bank and federal reserve system. After watching it, I did not feel very in my body when Wayne and I were headed down the steep rock stairs to go check out the slowly rising river in front of the ranch (used to be a gentle creek and it is now a churning river about the width of a two lane highway.)

Wayne had just been warning me about how slick the rocks were and I just dropped the hand he offered me (feeling falsely confident) when down I went, hard on my butt, boom, boom, boom, landing on three stairs made of concrete and river rock. I thought I would pass out from the pain and shock and I also probably got the wind knocked out of me. Luckily, I knew not to put my wrists down to slow my fall (based on straining my wrist when I fell a couple of years ago), so other than a very sore tailbone, I had no other injuries. Still, a bruised tailbone is a somewhat debilitating injury. It is hard to sit down in a chair or bend over very far. Five days later, I still feel pain when I try to sit on a chair or do much of anything other than lie on my side.

Wayne had just been recovering from his own body process last week passing very painful kidney stones while Christopher suffered from a stomach illness for a few days. So we have all been feeling the intensity of what the body can bring up for us to feel and to heal. I felt immediately why this injury happenedto me on an emotional level. Part of me was frustrated and angry at the false self world in response to the movie. I was just going to talk with Wayne about this when I fell. Also, it has been a very full nine months since we came to the ranch with huge adjustments in lifestyle and lots of physical work in our gardens, in daily life, and in our building project. I had been putting in a lot of time over the last few weeks writing, editing, and publishing our book, Living As If, along with editing and updating our other four books.

This injury brought me back into balance by literally slamming me on my bum and giving me an immediate reminder of my first or root chakra, grounding me to the earth. I feel much more grounded since living on the ranch, spending so much of time with my hands in the earth and in nature. Yet, it is still a process for me, for all of us, to become more embodied and connected to the earth. Ultimately, I feel a new kind of softness and surrender coming through me since I drew this injury. I have needed more help and collaboration from Wayne and Christopher, which is always a good thing for the part of me that tries to hold and manage too much. I have literally needed to lean into Wayne, with us holding hands wherever we slow shuffle walk around the ranch together. Eventually, of course, my tail bone will heal and my body will be back to normal. But, I feel shifted from this, especially because I chose to feel what was going on emotionally and what my body was trying to tell me. I feel there is a great gift for all of us in responding to what our body injuries and illnesses are bringing to us rather than just fighting them with drugs and modern medicine or seeing them only from a physical perspective.

The following is an excerpt from our recent book (available as a free e-book), Living As If: Embracing Collapse, Healing Through Parts Work, and Finding Sustainable Sanctuary from a chapter about our relationship to our body illnesses and injuries and processes to help deepen our connection with our bodies:

My experience has been that the physical body is directly linked to the emotional body and the energetic-spiritual body. Emotions that we suppress will remain ‘frozen’ in our subconscious and eventually express themselves in physical ill health and injuries. The undigested emotions build up as parts of us yet, also, it feels like this toxicity clogs up our body functionality as well. It can be very effective to journal with the body part that is injured or the disease that is manifesting in order to get a sense of what needs to be emotionally digested. Giving the injury or disease a ‘voice’ allows us to directly connect with our bodies in a way that isn’t about just feeding it drugs. One client that I worked with in SoulFullHeart had suffered from asthma for many years. When she journaled with her asthma, it was quite an illuminating and meaningful process for her.

Also, people don’t often acknowledge how much of our reality is taken in and experienced on an energetic level. While our minds are filtering our realities and responding to them, we are also processing the energy fields around us and coming at us. This energy that we’ve taken in over and over without clearing it out in any way can have a deep impact on our physical health. Energetic frequencies that we’ve digested can build up and express in disease, being overweight, and in injury. Regularly receiving energy healing that is based in the body and negotiated with parts of us as we go can be very effective, an interactive and collaborative kind of energy healing is what we offer in SoulFullHeart. Rather than just giving the body medicines and drugs, feeling what it is trying to express emotionally and addressing also the energetic manifestations leads to actual healing rather than just symptom management.

I worked in a radiation oncology department as a medical assistant for a few years. I was stunned by how mainstream medicine dealt with cancer, strictly on the ‘fight it and drug it and zap it’ level. There was no discussion of emotional or spiritual causes, of course, and no real emotional support for the patient and their families either. This was a few years before my awakening to parts work and my own access to the Divine, yet, I still felt impotent and powerless in the face of so much density related to healing. The healer in me felt like I had my hands tied behind my back, unable to offer even soothing energy healing to those in pain or suffering. The only thing I could hand them was another prescription for drugs written by an apathetic and hurried doctor. My sense is that cancer is a manifestation of undigested toxicity from not feeling our emotions, not accessing our soul wounds, and not eating healthy and nourishing food. Maybe it is genetic in cause to some extent, but it is not solely genetic or biological in origin. To just look at the biological causes and only at someone’s physical manifestations is to completely screen out the holistic opportunities for healing and a terrible reduction of a person’s soul bigness.

Process:Body Health Connection –
Result: This process is to become connected to your body’s needs and energetic frequencies, especially if you have a chronic illness or injury.

Activity: Engage in an all fruit day. Try eating only fruit and fruit vegetables (tomatoes, avocados, cucumbers) for an entire day. Notice the emotional reactions that come up from doing this. While food serves a biological need, it is common knowledge that it also can provide emotional comfort and be used as a medication to numb our feelings. Eating a different diet than you are used to can alter this routine of comfort eating, so you can begin to comfort the part of you that uses food in this way instead. You can also try fasting for a day or more to see what that pushes up for you. Personally, I like the fruit days as it feels less harsh on the body than fasting and it reboots any medicative eating patterns that I’ve been falling into.

Activity: Energy Meditation: Find a quiet place where you can lie down flat on your back and not be disturbed. Imagine a flow of green light moving into the top of your head (your crown or seventh chakra), down to your forehead (your third eye or sixth chakra), to your throat (your throat or fifth chakra), moving to your heart (your heart or fourth chakra), then to your belly button area (your power center or third chakra), to the area where your ovaries are (for women) or lower belly (your second chakra) to the base of your spine (your first chakra) and then out your right leg. Keep your legs uncrossed so energy can flow out your right leg.
Practice imagining this energy moving through your chakras until you feel quite comfortable with where your chakras are located. Then, place both your palms on each of your chakras for however long you feel that you need to. Imagine green energy flowing out of your hands and into your chakras, which are spinning disks of energy. Feel if your chakras are quite open or more closed off. You can open them up more by imaging a swirling of green energy opening them out in your mind or with a movement of your hand in a counter clockwise direction. If you find that this process brings up a lot for you, you might consider going to an energy healer (especially one that is Reiki attuned) to receive more help in this area. You also might consider becoming Reiki attuned yourself (it is offered in most cities) to be able to give this energy to yourself and to serve others with it.

Activity: Journaling with your body: If you have an injury or pain in your body or a chronic illness, connect with that part of your body or with the chronic illness by journaling with it in a similar way that I did with my back when it was injured. Understanding and feeling what the injury or chronic illness is ‘trying to tell you’ is a powerful way to bring healing to your body. It also helps us move out of victim mode related to our bodies and into a proactive and collaborative place of healing. If you struggle with weight issues (either under or over weight), you can journal with your body about that and feel into the deeper reasons for it.

Jillian Vriend is a co-founder of SoulFullHeart Community, a healer, and author of Living As If, Under The Bloated Banyan, Dialogues With Divine Mother, and In The Arms Of Mother. Visit soulfullheart.com for more information about community membership and immersion retreats at the ranch.

Creativity Abounds: Life At El Rancho Blog


By Jillian Vriend

Creativity abounds here, inside of me, a force moving through me that is both persistent and patient. Everything is a palette for it: our gardens, our building project, our healing circle on Sundays, my writing projects, our meal planning and preparing, our interaction with the animals.

Our gardens in Tranquila had been neglected a bit while we focused on building. We reached a stopping point on Christopher’s cabana due to the rain and wind knocking down our shade-rain tent made from tarps and metal beams. We are currently in creative mode around designing and resourcing materials to add the roof (a palapa style ‘hat’ made of wood and palm tree fronds). After spending minimal time in the gardens due to the heat and rain making it difficult to germinate anything other than beans, we’ve been expanding them with twice the amount of raised beds that we had before in preparation for late fall and winter. We are also digging out pathways and beginning to creatively design and think about our next building with a u-shaped kitchen, dining room, cob bench seating (worked into a natural rock formation that forms a nook), and a guest room space for Wayne and I to stay in during construction of our cabana.

I am engaged in multiple writing projects right now, including writing a fiction book about exodus, collapse, and finding sustainable sanctuary with an eco-spiritual and emotional healing twist, of course, called Ash In The Air. Feels like it might be a trilogy actually, covering the same characters going through exodus, collapse, and then rebirth afterwards. Wayne is starting a book based on his life story and experience in and leaving Christianity called, for now at least, Beyond The Cross. We are also enjoying reading books right now that provide creative inspiration for our sustainable lifestyle including The Humanure Handbook by Joseph Jenkins, Gaia: A New Look At Life On Earth by James Lovelock, and Navigating The Coming Chaos by Carolyn Baker.

I am able to devote my energy to writing, reading, the gardens and building mostly because I am no longer spending time online and watching streaming TV and movie marathons. It amazes me that I haven’t watched a movie or TV show since November, nine months, and that I don’t miss it very much anymore. I have no idea what happened on the last seasons of Game Of Thrones, Orange Is The New Black, Rectify, and other shows that I watched regularly. I haven’t seen the latest Avengers movie or that one with Reese Witherspoon based on that book I liked about hiking the Pacific Crest Trail. I don’t know what the latest gossip is about Beyonce or Jennifer Aniston or Brad Pitt. Watching these shows and movies and following celebrity gossip kept me connected to mainstream popular culture in the only way really left to me after all the radical choices I’d made in my personal life. And then, I moved to the ranch and I cut that cord too. I am now free falling without a mainstream culture to swim in.

As a result, my creative voice and imagination have more space and time to roam without comparison to anything else and without being filled up by others’ words, images, and lifestyles. I can hear my ‘writers voice’ more clearly here without the background noise of traffic, people, and car engines – without the ‘noise’ of electromagnetic rays filling the air. Sheep bleeting, chickens squawking, dogs barking, crickets trilling…these are the sounds that have become a welcome backdrop for the words to form and come together.

With so much freed up in our simplified lifestyle and less distractions, it is perhaps not surprising that in less than four months we have completed our book, Living As If: Embracing Collapse, Healing Your Heart And Soul Through Parts Work, And Taking Action Toward Sustainable Sanctuary. I wrote more about the book in this blog entry. My husband Wayne and our friend Christopher wrote it with me, contributing pieces on money consciousness, sacred romance, collapse awareness, natural education, journaling dialogues with Divine Mother and Divine Father, and much more.

The main portion of the book is the story of our journey over the last year from industrial city dwellers to sustainable homesteaders. We share our process of deciding to leave Canada, our criteria for choosing a sustainable sanctuary, our road trip from Canada to Mexico, and our first six months living here on the ranch. We also include process activities for you to engage with to undergo your own ‘living as if’ experience, providing everything from a process to help you choose your sustainable sanctuary to experience direct connection with your parts and the Divine. I am particularly fond of our food consciousness, digital detox and eco-conscious processes, including energy and nature meditations and animal healing/communication processes.

Our book, in both low cost or free e-book format and in print edition, will be available soon on lulu.com and on other retailers such as Amazon, Nook, ibook, and others. If you would like to receive a PDF of the book for free, please email us at soulfullhearts@gmail.com and we’ll send one along to you. We feel it is a crucial read for anyone who wants to live as if collapse is coming and experience the life altering gifts that come from it.

Jillian Vriend is a co-founder of SoulFullHeart Community, a healer, and author. Visit soulfullheart.com for more information about community membership and immersion retreats at the ranch.


Digesting Christianity’s Surprise Demise: Divine Father Dialogues Day 28


Wayne's Mandala

W:  Hello, Divine Father.

DF:  Hello, Wayne.

W:  How are you digesting our last talk, or should I say ‘my last talk?’ I was a bit long winded wasn’t I?

DF:  Not long enough as far as I’m concerned, Wayne. I could listen to you tell this story over and over. When you consider how many times, and how far and wide the Christian gospel has been preached, what now cannot be called anything more than a really cheap lie, born of a really slimy intent, and how it’s been crammed down the throats of the gullible, it’s going to take some long windedness and repetition to undo.

W:  Thank you, Divine Father.  I feel some foreboding to be this outed around all this. These are fighting words for so many.

DF:  My sense is that your words will only come into the awareness of people whose hearts and souls are ready to take them in.  There’s no need for a holy war around any of this.  The fate of Christianity and Paulianity is sealed and it is in collapse now, all on it’s own accord.

W:  Yeah, and I get that’s important for someone who has been deep into Christianity, for him or her to not feel totally invaded, and left unsupported by having his or her faith shown to be a complete farce if it wasn’t something their soul was ready to see.

DF:  While that’s true, we are also fast approaching the time where Christianity itself is about to implode in on itself, of it’s own volition, as well as on account of the focused and collective energies of the human race simply wanting to learn and know and grow. When more of this collapse of Christianity happens, there will be many people simply coming unhinged in despair, anger, and chaos. It would be so much better if they were ready, but many simply won’t be.

W:  I’m curious for your digestions about what I shared yesterday.

DF:  A big dawning awareness for me, Wayne, is the realization that at the time the lie of Christianity was concocted, it was in a palpable climate of fear for one’s eternal destiny. Judaism had come to be about gaining heaven, but the price for entry for the non-Jew, as you talked about was pretty unreal. Paul’s message of ‘all you need to do is believe’ addressed this leading fear of gaining heaven and avoiding hell.

W:  And it seems that in our times, this leading fear has largely subsided for most people, even Christians.  The message of ‘turn or burn’ has lost its’ appeal in the church world, even though that message completely lines up with the tenets of the faith. It just isn’t that effective in filling pews or collection plates like it used to, so leaders necessarily play it down.

DF:  When we look at what is filling the pews today, it really is evidence of a movement in steep decline. Big box religion in it’s many varieties is becoming more and more bizarre in it’s attempts to stay afloat, and this awareness is going mainstream.

W:  What I’m curious about and wanted to discuss with you, Father, is the question of how this ploy of Paul’s became the embryo of what Western Civilization was founded upon.  Some of the things that I can see a huge resemblance in are money, business, capitalism, patriarchy, education, family, patriotism, to name just a few.  There’s a common denominator of being obedient to some form of ‘the almighty’, along with the idea that ‘non-compliance’ will surely be punished.  It seems those thematics and reality picture came from Christianity.  Other influences certainly influenced Christianity’s formation that preceded it, but Christianity it seems encapsulated and launched some really big things.

DF:  Things like duty, obligation, penalty…

W:  …and the idea that came with that is when all of these are satisfied, you’ll be allowed a measured dessert of happiness.

DF:  Do you really feel, Wayne, that Paul’s worldview, or the Paulianity he created from his worldview, became the foundation of Western Civilization?

W:  I don’t know. I thought you’d know.

DF:  You sounded like you knew a moment ago.

W:  That was just a part of me trying to sound academic. Truth is, I don’t know, and I’m certainly not an Academic, but, I do suspect it may be way more true than any of us have realized up till now. More than suspect it, I feel it to be true.

DF:  Well, I’m with you on the not knowing, as well as the feeling.  Let’s see what we can sort through of it.

W:  I figured you’d be up for it.

DF:  This one is way too important to pass up.

W:  Especially when we consider that western civilization is so evidently near the end of whatever it is and that something new is in the making.

DF:  Where do we start, Wayne?

W:  Well, for me, what comes is the question about why did I have such a deep implant for most of my adult life that said ‘When I get ahead, then I will obtain the life I really want, then I will explore my creativity and gifts.’

DF:  Let’s try and feel that together on its’ most fundamental level. ‘Ahead’ feels like a form of obtaining heaven, wouldn’t you say? Or is that too simplistic?

W:  That rings true for me, Father. Paulianity was all about addressing something missing or lacking. Wow.

DF:  Which raises the question if there really was anything lacking.

W:  That one is really so big, Father, when I feel it. That energy permeated my entrance into Christianity and my focus inside of it. It also really speaks to how I entered my first marriage and raising 2 daughters, with a big ideal of being a good father. It certainly speaks to the focused and intense input of energy into learning and growing the painting business for me.

DF:  So, Wayne, What do you now feel is the underneath that energy of getting ahead?

W:  It goes so much deeper than mere thinking I need to get ahead, but to a much more primal feeling of wanting to feel something about myself that I couldn’t access or experience, way down in the basement of my being. It was a feeling that I was somehow on the wrong side of all that is good and alive and meaningful, and I needed to find my way there, somehow, some way, to something utopian.

DF:  Sounds like that favored verse in Romans; ‘All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, but the gift of God is life eternal.’ A hundred and ten percent Paulianity again to the rescue, wouldn’t you say?

W:  Totally. Another Wow. The very idea of being separate from all that is good…, Can we really credit Paul with that much influence?

DF:  These deep feelings were a deep part of humanity’s search long before Paul, but no one coalesced them into such a potent force with as far reaching effects is my truth. The first and most successful corporation isn’t McDonalds or Apple, it’s none other than the Roman Catholic Church.  Roman Catholicism asserts that the apostle Peter was it’s first Pope, but only as a way to hide the fact that it was Paul’s ruthless life’s work that seeded it’s reality into being, and in turn seeded all of Christianity that flowed from its’ Roman beginnings to this very day.

W:  …and in turn, seeded a pervasive way of life into my being, 2 millenniums later.

DF:  Wayne, this is really important to feel and to take stock of, and to own. That who you are, and how you feel about life on so many levels, was passed on to you through the DNA of a culture, which originated in a feeling state, in this case the feeling state was and is separation from divinity. This formed the reality in which you swam, but left you without a conscious relationship with the water. You became the reality of the cultural conditioning that was handed down to you on so many levels, and in so many ways, until you began to consciously feel your way through that conditioning.

W:  The beginning of a great awakening…

DF:  The beginning of great awakening, yes, and one that really never ends.  The human race needed to come to know itself and fulfill itself in all of it’s potential.  The only way to this was by collective journey and discovery, and it seems really evident to me, that that journey had to begin with an externalized god. Paul was only championing a new and better way to gain access to and favor with this separate out-there God.  Deep in collective consciousness was a felt sense of separation, so deep that it is still felt today.  Paul’s ploy, born out of his own felt sense of wanting to bridge his own feelings of separation, in his case through power and dominance in the name of god, could only find traction because of where humanity was at collectively.

W:  So then Paul isn’t to blame quite like the way I want to give him a really swift kick in the ass?

DF:  You’d have to kick yourself along with all of humanity in the ass if you needed to carry out a punishment.

W:  That would be a lot of ass kicking.

DF:  The paradox here though is that even looking for whom to blame, and the need to blame and punish comes from this felt state of separation.

W:  Like how?

DF:  Separation presumes a gulf between humanity and divinity. In that presumption is of course a guilty party, and of course, this ‘God’ is designated to be perfect in the infinite sense, so that leaves humanity culpable.  Oh, and don’t forget, it was here that nature was blamed and made bad and dirty, along with humanity. It was human nature that was said to be fallen. From there it seeks to offer a bridge, which is its’ good news amidst all the bad news.

W:  Good news amidst the bad news, that’s the ploy of all of slimy salesmanship today.

DF:  And from start to finish, all of this is conceived and has its’ reality only as long as the story of separation holds dominion.

W:  So then what’s the reality of the matter if it isn’t separation?

DF:  The new story is that humanity was never separate from divinity, and never separate from nature, and nature was never fallen.  It was just the power of the old story that was endorsed in the collective that gave it a deep and pervasive felt reality.

W:  It’s like, Father, that, we are not so much in relationship as we are relationship itself.

DF:  Try and wrap your mind around that one, huh?

W:  I know I just said it, but I can’t quite really imagine what it means.

DF:  Humanity was and is inseparably a part of, not apart from. Being in relationship requires 2 or more in separation is how I’d say it. Being relationship itself presumes oneness.

W:  I like that, somehow, what looks a lot like 2 or more has in fact become one.

DF:  This is the dawning awareness of Jesus actual words ‘as you do to others, so you do unto yourself,’ rather than the moral prescription version of those words that made it into the bible of ‘do unto others as you would have them do unto you.’ One presumes a separate self, and projects obligation and duty and the other version presumes oneness and love.

W:  That’s totally cool.

DF:  Like majorly cool.

W:  So then, me wanting to fix blame on Paul is evidence that Paulianity is still alive and well in me, though I left Paulianity 10 years ago now, and as fast as I could, I might add.

DF:  True, but these are the cultural realities that pervade the entire culture, the things you live and breathe in every day that are invisible. You may have personally moved a long way from this consciousness, but while humanity is still largely beholden to the culture of separation, you cannot be totally free of it. If you could, that would mean separation is real.

W:  So how and when do we move on from this yawning trap of separation then? Do we all have to wait for everyone to get it?

DF:  The truth is that you already are moving from the grip of separation.  If you are feeling it personally, that means humanity is feeling it. The soul of humanity agreed to enter the dark night of the soul of separation so as to complete it and graduate from it, into what comes after it.

W:  Which is?

DF:  Which is an entire world made knew, by a new story, it’s inhabitants and participants living from oneness, one with self; one with divinity; one with each other; one with all of nature. Change the story, and you change everything.

W:  So it’s like we need a new Paul to come along to seed and birth this new story then?

DF:  Actually, this story could never be born into consciousness by one hero savior figure.  It’s being born by many hero’s, changing many worlds and many cultures.

W:  Sort of sounds like a Messianic deliverance?

DF:  Except, this Messiah has already come. It just is.  People just living their way more and more into this consciousness, as their every day reality is what is ushering in this sea change of reality, a whole mass of Messiahs if you will.

W:  With a current world population of seven plus billion, that’s a whole lot of souls. That should make for a pretty good show.

DF:  Best to show up early and get a good seat, I’d say.

W:  But its’ also, Father, a great death of the old way in which many souls will perish in the chaos of all this collapse.

DF:  Souls cannot perish, Wayne. Lives can be lost, and that is tragic, on the human level. But a soul doesn’t feel it that way. A soul doesn’t consider it a great loss to live a life with a tragic human end. For a soul, this can be a great turning in what they chose to come here to learn and feel. Many souls asleep to what is befalling the world is actually necessary for it to manifest.

W:  Necessary? Ouch!

DF:  I know that sounds harsh to your Pauline ears, as if God had decided that it should be that way. No, nature decided it that way. Nature doesn’t mind evolving. Nature doesn’t mind trial and error, and instead sees it all as simply learning.

W:  Wow, I must have a part of me still pretty into some Pauline conditioning as you call it, because I’m not all the way on board with that.

DF:  It’s not that nature is sadist. The inherent value isn’t in the suffering; it’s in the learning in the midst of suffering. And all of the learning is about returning to essence.

W:  That I’m more on board with.

DF:  Good.

W:  Do you think we just sorted out a bunch of the world’s problems?

DF:  A pretty good chunk I’d say.

W:  No wonder I’m tired, that was a lot.

DF:  Well, go rest then, so we can do this again.  We may not be done.

W:  Will do. Thank you, Father.

DF:  Thank you! That was awesome.

Wayne Vriend is a co-founder of Soulfullheart Community, healer and author of 90 Days With Yeshua. Visit soulfullheart.com for more information.


Christianity’s Surprise Demise: Divine Father Dialogues Day 27


Wayne's Mandala

W:  Good Morning, Divine Father.

DF:  Hey, Good Morning, Wayne.

W:  I have a plan where I’d like to go with you today…

DF:  And where’s that?

W:  I’ve been digesting a book I’ve been re-reading called The Event That Created Christianity by Eric Zuesse, and it’s been calling to me again. I want to ask you to hear me out on this story.

DF:  Sounds good, Wayne, tell me about it.

W: Here comes a bunch of content if you’re up for it?

DF:  For sure, I’m up for it.

W:  Okay, here goes…So in Paul’s letter to his converts in Galatia, the very earliest of New Testament writings, though still some 20 years after Jesus’ death, Paul is forced to deal with an arising issue that’s going to blow the lid off of his life’s work unless he can wrangle it under some kind of control. Paul has been an influential and rising leader over the past 14 years in the sect of Judaism that Jesus started. The movement is now under James leadership, that’s Jesus’ brother whom he appointed just before Jesus was put to death by the Roman authorities for sedition against Rome.  Paul, however, has been off to one side of this movement considerably, as he has been introducing gentiles (as in non-jews) into the sect, successfully so, and herein is the mounting problem, which I’ll get to in a moment.  Paul; though a contemporary of Jesus admittedly has never met the man; who also has proudly had little to do with Jesus’ disciples. Paul, though he is credited for authoring over two thirds of the New Testament, strangely never referenced a single teaching or life experience of the earthly Jesus. Here in the letter to the Galatians, some 17 years into his work with the Jesus sect, for the first time, Paul claims to not only have met Jesus’ ghost in a physical resurrected apparition, but to have been certified by him in this apparition to be god’s anointed messenger. Paul now comes on with monstrous claims saying that the god of Judaism had changed his mind on everything he had previously sworn off on that he would never change his mind on. In other words, God is now completely pulling the pin on Judaism.  Problem is Paul had sold these converts on Judaism, and he has to master mind his choice of words and timing so as to keep a hugely hidden agenda adequately hidden. Paul is as hokey as this god he claims to have met. Problem is, hokey or not, Paul has been successfully attracting these non Jewish converts probably by the thousands, to this Jesus sect for some time selling them on something very different than what he is debuting now. Nobody has ever called themselves ‘Christian’ in any way shape or form, including Paul, and certainly not Jesus. Worshipping a Christ, as far as a follower of Judaism is concerned, is as false as any of the other forbidden pagan religions of the day. Judaism is the deal here, and if Judaism is anything, it’s one unitary God, no Son, and certainly no ghost, holy or otherwise.

Paul, is for the very first time rolling out something of epic proportions, again admittedly, to save his own ass, speaking of stuff that is unequivocally anathema to everything Jesus and his specific Judaistic sect of followers held dear, not to mention all the rest of Judaism, and not to mention all of what Paul himself had previously taught. He’s betting the farm though that his converts won’t see through it.

Paul, tells his converts that though he had been up until some 17 years prior obsessed with persecuting this Jewish movement with a murderous zeal. Then through his claimed conversion experience, on the road to Damascus to carry out his persecutions, god knocked him off his horse and called him to take his message to the world. The god he claimed to have had this completely unheard of encounter with (except maybe for Moses and the Burning Bush) rewards him somehow with a special revelation and calling.

DF:  Only the true god would do such a thing, right? Confounding human wisdom and all of that.

W:  Totally. Now, Paul’s been running this convert circus for non-jews into this Jesus sect for the last 14 years while hiding from his converts how very much off to the side, and completely out of collaboration with what Jesus’ disciples have been doing and teaching that Paul’s work actually is.  Pardon me, Father, if I’m repeating myself a bit here.

DF:  No problem, I’m tracking. I get you have to get this out.

W:  Thank you, Father, yes, I so do. Back to my story.

So now, the growing problem behind the scenes with this rapidly growing group of converts is a deal breaker, and the issue strangely, to our ears at least, has to do with the cock. These converts are not circumcised. They are not like the Jewish babies who were circumcised on the eighth day, according to the command of god in Judaism. If there is one defining issue of a follower of Judaism, laid out in Genesis chapter 17, verse 14, as a completely non-negotiable, forever and unchanging deal, it’s circumcision. James and his group finally comes full out and says ‘it’s circumcision or the door.’ Snip, snip, snip. Circumnavigate the penis with a scissors of all things! Maybe, we can thank Paul for trying to put the brakes on that one, but really, he could have cared less if it was about amputating the penis. In fact, he explicitly said that he wished castration upon the circumcision group who were opposing him. This opposing group however is none other than Jesus’ brother and closest disciples; James, Peter and John. For me personally, Father, it wasn’t until the eve of my journey in Christianity that I could see that what was plain as day in this text, that Paul was in conflict with the very leaders that Jesus left in his place.  I, like Christians everywhere, simply could not see such a travesty, for to see it, would erode everything Paul and his later followers set out to establish.  These ‘Judaizers,’ as he calls them were not some oppositional group that challenged him, but in fact the very ones who had earlier authorized him to take the message of Jesus outside of the Jewish population to what they call, the gentiles.  Paul is finally making his complete break with the movement Jesus begun to begin a brand new religion.

Paul was a con artist like no other. His hoax has endured for 2000 years, and even came to form the basis for the entire western civilization even deeply affecting the way of life for all westerners, not only Christians.

DF:  My god, Wayne. I don’t know what to say…. and of course, the women didn’t count for much….

W: Nope, no penis, no say. If only the women had a role in this, this pissing match parade about who’s included and who’s not wouldn’t have dominated our culture for all these years. Neither Judaism, nor Christianity would ever have came into existence had it not been for this battle of gender dominance. I guess it’s what we needed as a species on some level, to learn our way into something new.

DF:  Please go on…

W:  So now, the men in Paul’s thriving group are in no mind to sign up for circumcision, like Jesus’ true followers are finally asserting they must do, after some waffling on the matter. These men prefer instead to keep their cocks intact, thank you very much. Back in the first century, there isn’t any antibiotics, no antiseptics and no anesthetics. Just surviving such an operation and avoiding the risk of infection and death was a very tall order, and of course, one wrong slip of the knife on a writhing, screaming unsedated patient, and he’s now castrated.  The offer for an eternal heaven, for this temporal pain, had no takers, and Paul didn’t need to take a survey to know that. He had sold them on a much cheaper heaven without the price and seal of circumcision. Paul has his boatload of uncircumcised converts; wealthy; Roman; embracing what’s left of Jesus’ brand of Judaism; and he doesn’t intend to lose them.  But James has called it. It’s circumcision or expulsion.

DF:  Trim the cock or cut the flock…

W:  Totally. Paul had been betting that James was going to go with the flow as he had for some time, but obviously working his plan ‘b’ in case he didn’t. Paul had hoped that his continuing flow of shekels to the much poorer Jesus followers in Jerusalem would be enough to keep James quiet on the circumcision issue. It was all good until it wasn’t.  Now Paul’s cock was in compliance being born a Jew, no problem there, but his followers were not, and Paul’s life’s work would be in his own ambitious words ‘to have run in vain.’  This group that has been converted to what they’ve been led to believe is the Jesus sect of Judaism are now, surprisingly forced to choose between James, the sect’s overall leader, or Paul, their leader and teacher. Paul goes nuclear and claims that James, whom Jesus appointed leader before his death is in fact God’s enemy, along with the apostles who actually lived with and knew Jesus, because they are opposing what he openly calls his gospel. He in fact boasts, that he never knew the earthly Jesus ‘according to the flesh’ as the apostles prior to him did, but he knows the risen Christ ‘according to the spirit,’ and how that supersedes the ‘earthly apostles’ by nothing less than the decree of God. Holeee Moses, Wouldn’t you say?

DF:  “What is a preacher to do?”

W:  Hahaha, nice touch on the Indian accent, Father.  Paul decides to pull the God-told-me card in a way that’s really never been matched before or since. He makes the first ever claim to this group of people, that god’s son’s ghost appeared to him and called him to lead a new religion; that the apostles who met Jesus don’t count and circumcision is no longer the deal and the ones’ who are calling for it are in fact god’s enemies, and even the enemies of all men no less. Paul straps a rocket onto the ass of whatever exists at that time in the way of anti-Semitism and anti-Judaism in one fell swoop, and puts the Jewish heaven on sale for a bargain like no other. Only faith in a resurrected-after-death Christ is now the only requirement, which he calls ‘the true circumcision of the heart.’

DF:  You can just feel the men relaxing about now.

W:  I get to keep my beloved cock intact. Wow, I mean, maybe a toe or a finger, but who came up with the cock trimming idea and built a religion around it, I can’t for the life of me figure out.

DF:  That was that Heavenly Father dude man. He’s like the ultimate gang leader really, way beyond tattoo’s and piercings. It’s drop the drawers and prove it, or it’s get out the knife. I am God and there is NONE like me. He knew no one else had the balls to match those entry requirements but surely knew that sooner or later, someone would come along and try to reduce them…?

W:  Like a Paul, the very archetype of a con artist, who just so happened, by a very unique and well documented chain of events, in the Christian Bible no less, to need to save his swollen ass at any expense.

DF:  Sounds a bit like the Jimmy Swaggart, Jim Baker and Jerry Falwell debacle back in the eighties…

W:  You tracked that one huh?

DF:  Wouldn’t have missed it for anything, Wayne.

W:  Not that unusual at all really, just another coup d’etat in religion land really, other than the penis trimming. Any church split that we see today is pretty much the same thing. Paul is just a slimy salesman like no other and possibly never been matched in his ruthlessness to save his self image and power. His original draw to ‘The Almighty’ reflects NOT his devotion to God, but rather his lifelong and unrelenting worship of power.

DF:  You say this isn’t that unusual… but it’s majorly interesting I’d say…

W:  Majorly, with a capital M, because of where this deal is headed. Now Paul unrolls his plan b in the most careful and cunning and crafty language with very carefully planned stages and timings of what could be said to whom and when without caving in this house of cards deal, and the crazy thing is, he just barely does it, but he does it. As I said, he’s saving his own ass, trashing the person and message of Jesus in favor of his completely invented and connived Christ message.

Then he decides to take it to the next level, and teaches that obeying the Roman authorities is the equivalent to obeying god. Paul curries the favor of the Roman occupiers. Paul himself is a Jew, but an honorary Roman citizen by birth because of his father. He knows an opportunity when he sees one. Judaism and Jesus, both of whom clearly stood opposed to the Roman occupation, are left in the dust, and the followers of Paul, now called ‘Christ’-ians are off to the races, even courting the favor of the Roman regime. Problem is though that the Romans are on record for killing Jesus for sedition against Rome.  Paul knew the Romans couldn’t embrace a religion, whose founder they had in fact had killed. That would leave the Romans guilty of deicide, which is killing god. Paul is forced to change this story, by blaming Jesus’ death on the Jewish leaders in order to absolve the Romans of any blame in it, saying that Pilate and the Roman soldiers simply carried out the demands of the Jewish leaders.  It’s now late in Paul’s life, and many decades after the murder of Jesus, with Paul’s non Jewish followers not having much sensitivity to such racist claims, that such a ludicrous idea could hold a shred of credibility.  Paul would have been himself crucified if he had tried to pull of any of this earlier in the game. So there you have it, Christianity now went Roman.

DF:  Triple wow, so now, 2000 years later, the story is finally unraveling…

W:  Big time, Father. For me, this story rings really true, but still, many questions came up for me around my conditioning. What about the accounts in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John?  But then I learned that these were all written decades after Paul unveiled his new religion, not prior, as they appear to be because of their placement as the first books of the New Testament. By the time of the gospel writings, Paul’s gospel has for decades been center stage, Jesus following has long been marginalized and even demonized and now it is Paul’s own loyal followers, who set out to write accounts of Jesus life to fit their very Pauline agenda. Not one of the gospels are written by any supposed disciple and contemporary of Jesus, as most Christians assume.  Had they been written anytime near the life of Jesus when the readers who knew of Jesus or his movement would have loudly protested and rejected these accounts would simply have not found the light of day.  Instead, now, 5 and 6 decades after the life of Jesus, we have a perfect climate for the writers of those gospels to insert into the mouth of Jesus the necessary pieces to make this all fly. Like the saying goes ‘History is written by those in power.’

DF:  And by now, those in power are jumping onto the best boat afloat and that meant Paul’s deal.

W:  Totally, nothing else was paying the bills and to this day, nothing has compared, in western society at least, to what Paul got off the ground over his lifetime and others took up and grew it to the mammoth proportions of Big Box Religion. Even business patterned itself after Paul’s deal, not to mention morality, or most all of our social structures, money, and on and on goes the list…

DF:  And you once thought Paul was the most devout and holy guy in the room.

W:  I did. I really did. I didn’t just think it. I ‘knew’ it way down deep inside. It’s what I was taught, and believed and gave my life to, and drew my self-worth from, along with the 2 billion people who presently call themselves Christians of one stripe or another.

DF:  Until you saw through it…

W:  …and Paul’s Christ became nothing more than a con artist’s farce perpetrated upon the human race for the last 2000 years.

DF: This is so striking and far-reaching. It changes so much. I can’t even begin to comprehend all that this now reveals.

W:  I can’t even begin to know what to do with it, Father.  For anyone who isn’t ready to see it, it is likely to remain hiding in plain sight, or at least that’s the way it has been up till now.

DF:  This is one of those things, Wayne, where just one soul, and one more, seeing through this hoax, and taking it into their hearts and lives, and coming free has a multiplication effect. You will see the complete downfall of Christianity in your lifetime. I firmly believe that. I’m surprised every day that its’ inertia keeps it coasting along as it does.

W:  What is there that I can say to the Christian reading this, and who suspects what I’ve shared is true?

DF:  You can tell them to honor themselves, and honor the people around them by choosing to leave, putting feet to that choice and letting their lives be a part of a new day. You can tell them to honor the time they needed to be beholden of Paul’s Christ, as part of their own search for the divine, and to honor this time the human race needed, and to graciously accept this dawning knowledge as their soul’s graduation into more life, more learning, more quest into what’s real and what isn’t.

W:  Thank you, Father. Thank you for feeling this story.

DF:  Thank you for telling it.

W:  I’m not sure we got to what’s tweaking me though about this story.

DF:  I think we did, Wayne.

W:  What’s that?

DF:  It’s a prophetic sense of what is soon time to be dawning on collective consciousness. You sharing this is part of the undermining and collapse of the pillars of the faith, and those reading this and taking it in, is all a part of the great change. If you thought Christianity’s stranglehold on the human race was intense, wait till you behold humanity’s liberation from Christianity.

W:  So, it’s a wait and see, then.

DF:  In one sense, yes, but in another, it’s a living and alive reality unfolding now. You get to see it now because it is given to you to see, and to help others ready to see. This is a first-fruits of deep and profound change. If you’re up for it, that is?

W:  I’m up for it.

DF:  Then fasten your seatbelt and get ready for the ride, because it is going to pick up noticeably and surprisingly.

Wayne Vriend is a co-founder of Soulfullheart Community, healer and author of 90 Days With Yeshua. Visit soulfullheart.com for more information.

Healing to Healthy, Conscious Mate Ache

In the moment I feel lonely. This is true even as I have my soul family with me, an arising and strengthening relationship with myself and my parts, and a sacred beautiful connection to the Divine in both its masculine and feminine energies. I have what many souls are longing for, yet haven’t been willing or able to actually feel it. So, I am far from complaining. I feel blessed and gracious. But my heart and soul is missing something big. A mate to share it with. The other half of my other half.

Reflecting back on my romantic life, I can’t really remember healthfully and consciously aching for romance. In high school I wanted to be like the other cool guys and have a girlfriend. It was, for a part of me, a status symbol in a way. It was also a way for this part to feel worthy about himself even though the relationship itself was full of unworthiness. Love took me by surprise in college when I met Jillian. Parts of me resisted, as it was such a different kind of love that I had ever experienced, but the depth and sacredness of it won out. After our marriage completed, my next relationship was in response to feeling depressed, not a desire for true love. So I drew a depressed mate. I’m sure you can guess how that went. After that, I was out of the romance business for a good seven years while raising my daughter. When she moved to Canada I had a desire to date again, but it wasn’t that deep ache for courtship. I had a sexual affair that turned into a year long relationship. I wasn’t in love and needed to be honest with that. When that ended, I began to wonder if I needed to have more of a relationship with myself, but again became surprised by a younger woman from Canada. For those of you who have read my blogs, you know that to be Kathleen, and the history of our time together is well documented on this site.

I recount my past to remind me of how I have related to romance compared to what I feel now. It has been some time since my last incarnation with Kathleen. Through all that time I have been healing my way to a more grounded sense of Self. But I had to go to the wounds. The mom wounds, the dad wounds, past relationship wounds, and past life wounds. From there I began to ask the questions who am I really and what do I really want? When I started to feel the edges of those answers, a sense of self-awareness and self-love took shape. When I began to fill my own cup with the help of Jillian, Wayne, and Divine Love, I started to feel a missing piece. But the missing piece wasn’t me. I used to identify with the missing and I felt void. Unloved. Unworthy. Now I feel the piece that is me. That has always been there, but I just couldn’t feel. So when I say I am lonely, I don’t feel alone. Now I feel the desire. The desire for the yin to my yang. The queen to my king. The peanut butter to my jelly. I feel it in a way that is healthy and conscious. I couldn’t have done that without healing my way there.

Now, the irony is that while I have found my mate ache, I have found it while living on a remote, off-grid ranch in Mexico. A part of me could list all the reasons why it feels almost impossible that I could find a mate. But those only serve to leave me in a suffering loop about it, a piece I am trying hard to heal. There are a lot of criterion for a woman to resonate with. Collapse, dirt, work, heat, vulnerability, parts work, past lives, leadership, community, limited technology, gardening, gift economy vs. fiat currency, lots of sex, curiosity, conversation, cob housing, occasional impassable river, rain, sun, seeing the context to the content, connection with the Divine, Sunday circles, energy healing, creative vegetarian cooking, horses, bugs, sheep, dogs, mangoes, bananas, limes, lemons, papaya, noni, moringa, neem, laughing, crying, conflicting, hugging, cuddling, walking, praying, building, watering, and above all…loving. But one thing is for certain, if she does, then I can honestly say she may be the one.

I realize this is starting to sound like a dating site profile. So be it. In the age of collapse, what isn’t truly you gets burned away and the really important things become much clearer. There isn’t much time to play hide and seek from each other. My heart aches for her and for the love she holds. I can feel her, but cannot touch her. I can talk to her, but I cannot hear her. I can imagine her, but it isn’t enough. When I feel all that, there is a pain. A pain that is unfulfilled desire. I let it come through me. I don’t deny it. My eyes fill with tears and I cry. For as long as I need to. Sometimes for a brief moment, sometimes for several minutes. I feel lonely and sad, yet I am held in it. Held by the Divine, my own self-worth, and the knowing that I have love, just in a different form. The ache moves through me, I dry my eyes and continue through my day with my desire still in tact, a bit stronger than it was before.

I don’t know when it will happen. I don’t know if it will happen. Not even the Divine can tell me that. All I can do is feel it, express it, and send it out to the universe. It is not a passive place of waiting, but an active vibration that I emit and respond to possibilities. This article is one of them. Who knows where it lands. It is like the proverbial message in a bottle, cast in the ocean of Love to see if it lands on the shore of another heart. In the meantime, I continue to build my cob home, help to tend the gardens, and heal more of what still needs to heal in my heart and soul. It’s a pretty damn good life. But it could get infinitely better.

I can be reached through the SoulFullHeart website or email at soulfullhearts@gmail.com if you know anyone that resonates with my call. Thank you for taking in my writing.

Cob Building As A Political Action: Life At El Rancho Blog


“Building with cob is a powerful, political action, greatly reducing the need for mortgage systems, lumber and construction industries, and petrochemical companies. Cob builders spend less of their lives looking to pay for all of the above, and more time living. Making homes from natural materials gathered gently from the earth improves the likelihood of the survival of life itself,” The Cob builders Handbook, Becky Bee


By Jillian Vriend

The structure which had been looking more like just a circle of rocks with pressed, clay-colored mud on top of it is now starting to look like a home. We are at the over three feet tall walls phase of building the sleeping-living cabana, so now is the time for experimentation, play, and creativity. Hand-sculpting the cob is so much fun and now that we are creating nooks and shelves and putting in glass pieces and wine bottles into the walls, it is even more satisfying. It is so cool how you can bury anything in cob and form around it. Christopher and I especially like doing the forming and shaping of the niches and shelves and the walls too. Wayne enjoys it as well, and, also, shoveling the cob into place on the tarp while we tread on it. Making cob is a physical process, but more about endurance than high level activity. I am surprised to discover that I am sweating a lot or my muscles are sore the next day after a morning of making and placing cob.

We can make and place about three batches a day before we run out of new wall space to place it. We have also started a stool by the door for sitting on while putting on shoes and placed two shelves in the closet. We are only limited by our imagination and, in some cases, materials. Because we have almost no budget for this project, it is stretching us to become more creative and resourceful. The only thing we have really had to buy is two strong tarps (about $170 total) to provide shelter from sun and rain while we build. We are reusing glass wine bottles, which look great with light shining through them into the room. A couple on the ranch donated extra pieces of glass that they didn’t need to our project which we are happily using. And, of course, the ranch itself provides the backbones of the cob: the straw, clay, and sand that we need everyday.

Standing inside of the cabana, even without the walls going all the way up to the ceiling yet, feels different than a conventional house. Energy moves around the circle, uninterrupted by synthetic materials. We use our hand and feet chakras to make and form the cob, so our energy is laced in with every molecule of it. As an energy healer, I can feel the difference that this makes. There is a soul to this home and a heart too. I am becoming more and more excited about starting our kitchen and dining room building and then the cabana by the boulders on the hill for Wayne and I.

I am beginning to understand the difference between green building and natural building. According to Ecovillages by Karen Litfin, “Green building uses high-efficiency manufactured materials whereas natural building uses only materials that come directly from the earth, like clay, sand, wood, and straw and that can often be found on site.” She also talks about the embodied energy, meaning the amount of energy and gas-based resources it took to manufacture, of green building materials being much higher than natural. Embodied energy becomes an issue whenever we look to high tech options, especially related to their long term viability. We feel that our solar panel is a product of fossil fuels and to maintain it when and if it needs fixing will require more fossil fuels (along with fiat currency) to repair. We see having any electricity as a luxury rather than as a necessity and this paradigm shift in us has made a big difference.

It is interesting to feel that choosing to build in cob and not with conventional methods is a political action, as Becky Bee offers in her Cob Builders Handbook. It is saying ‘no’ to methods that create pollution while the materials are being made (embodied energy again) and are inherently unsustainable. It is saying ‘no’ with our hands and feet. It is saying ‘yes’ to natural materials being durable, attractive, and preferable. Another concept that has been interesting to me is the sense that sustainability is not actually an option. It may feel like an option now, while non-sustainable practices are the norm, but in the bigger picture, the longer term picture, it is not an option. It is just what nature is when left on its own.

It is finally cooling down here with cloudy skies, some rain storms, a welcome relief from the hot days since the beginning of May. I put seeds in the ground in our Rio garden and in our Tranquila garden, trying to fit in a window where the skies were cloudy but not pouring down rain. It’s an experiment right now to see what will germinate and what won’t, what plants are OK with rain and which ones aren’t. The bean plants are still the stars of the garden, some of them seeming to germinate year round, and tolerant to the rains and the heat. I miss our tomatoes already and look forward to growing them again in the winter, along with cucumbers and squash. I planted kale, bok choy, tropical lettuce, tatsoi once it cooled down and we are eager for them to grow as we miss greens.

We are becoming more energized by a growing sense of clarity and passion about our SoulFullHeart Community here at the ranch. We already live in community, the three of us sharing meals, money, living spaces, car, dogs, work projects, and a healing path together. We desire for others to join us in this lifestyle of organic healing and emotional transparency in a sustainable environment. I am fond of the term ‘eco-spirituality’ and I feel like it represents what we are offering in SoulFullHeart. Spirituality that is grounded in the body and in the earth. It isn’t about transcendence or pulling away and out of the world; it is about embodied and relational transformation that is more in the world. Our vision is for maybe ten people, including the three of us, so more of a large family vibe (but a healthy one!) than an ecovillage or co-housing community.

We created a booklet describing about us, our vision for the community, and other important information. Please email us at soulfullhearts@gmail.com if you would like us to send you one.

Jillian Vriend is a co-founder of SoulFullHeart Community, a healer, and author of three books. Visit soulfullheart.com for more information.