By Jelelle Awen
“The most difficult thing we have to do in order to survive the coming crash is to renounce the life of artificial luxury that has been the temporary product of the systematic destruction of our life support systems.” – Brace For Impact, Thomas Lewis
Renouncing a life of artificial luxury. Yes, I can relate to that. And especially the word, ‘artificial’. Artificial luxuries compared to natural luxuries. Artificial luxuries need to be attained, maintained, and possessed. Natural luxuries arise to be experienced and cannot really be owned. Artificial luxuries are temporary while natural ones are enduring. Maybe it’s as simple as artificial luxuries are man-made and natural ones….well, they are natural.
Systemic destruction of our life support systems. In every way that is imaginable, humans are indeed destroying the very things that are vital for our survival. That we can do this for so little reward or benefit (beyond the very artificial and temporary luxury of money attainment) would be baffling without the picture of the false self and its evolution. The false self, in a way, is an artificial luxury, created by modern, egoic circumstances that require a strategic, self image-based, money-focused, and non-vulnerable way of relating to the world. The false self developed as a core defensive structure that is a product of an industrialized environment.
I recently read Brace For Impact by Thomas Lewis again. Thomas Lewis has a beautiful generalist mind, able to analyze and present information without mentally getting bogged down too much in the details or needing to ‘prove his case’. He presents a compelling and inspiring argument for inevitable collapse of industrial society due to the areas of water scarcity, peak oil production, industrial agriculture and meat production, global climate change-related weather events, political corruption, economic unsustainability and much more. Reading this book is to have your eyes opened, your heart hurting, your gut aching, and your initiative charging. The last chapter about the urgency of finding an off grid, rural, safe sanctuary and learning ‘back to basics’ homesteading skills was particularly validating to me related to the choices I and three others have made recently moving to an off-grid ranch in Mexico.
While it was immensely validating, I felt there was a missing piece in the writing. Thomas Lewis talks eloquently about what is happening, but less succinctly about why it is happening. He offers a picture of addiction to money and to greed that feels true, but without a specific sense of why this addiction has been necessary. We feel that all addictions have unfelt emotional congestion at their roots. The addiction is an outward manifestation of an inner need going unmet and unfelt. If money subconsciously represents love and how we feel about it (which I feel is true after coaching and facilitating people around their ‘money issues’), then the need for love is the biggest one that is going unmet in all the money accumulation that is leading to so much destruction of our planet and ourselves. It is our disconnection from our deep need for love that manifests into acting without love toward other humans, animals, and the living planet.
In my experience of the last ten years of healing my own false self and others, I ultimately hold the false self with equal parts love and challenge. Love invites the false self into authentic expression through nourishing and real experience of the love it never knew that it always needed. Challenge holds the false self accountable to keep being vulnerable, surrendering to the growing authentic self, and letting go of things (such as artificial luxuries) that keep it falsely powerful.
The loving challenge our false selves are being offered at this time in modern history is to shift very significantly our lifestyles to sustainable, authentic, and love-based ones. If our false selves are unwilling to shift or to even see that there are very compelling reasons to shift, then there is little to be offered by me or anyone else about the coming collapse and how to survive it. For those that are ready to shift and also see that there is an absolute necessity to do so, I invite them to feel how it is their false self that has feelings of resistance, doubt, trepidation, and fear of change. It is the false self that is attached to artificial luxuries and it takes a lot of natural luxuries such as love and the bounty and magic offered by nature for them to let it go.
The first time I read Brace For Impact, I was still living in Canada in a fairly comfortable life, although I had already started letting go of many things. Reading the book inspired me greatly to keep going with my search for a sanctuary and to actually make the move to living off grid in Mexico. There was little to no resistance inside of me (no real false self protest) to letting go of the artificial luxuries that I’ve known my whole life. And, I am now experiencing in my daily life that I can not only survive without them; I am thriving in deeply nourishing ways that bring me back to the luxuries that only nature and living an authentic life can bring.
Jelelle Awen is co-creator and facilitator of the SoulFullHeart Way Of Life. Go here to connect with Jelelle on facebook. Visit the SoulFullHeart website for more information about virtual sessions with her.