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Reconnecting Earth And Soul Amid Climate Chaos With Leah Rampy

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As the climate chaos continues to worsen, our disconnect with the earth and soul is slowly becoming the norm. If not addressed at once, it will lead to even bigger and irreversible problems. Leah Rampy, a professor, leadership consultant, and corporate/nonprofit executive, leads the charge in reweaving earth and soul back together – before it is too late. Joining Corinna Bellizzi, she shares how to go beyond conventional American wisdom to create perfect solutions to the environmental problems we face right now without messing up the natural order of things. They also discuss how to guide the younger generations on the right way to approach climate chaos and get rid of consumerism through the smallest adjustments to their perspectives and lifestyles.

 

About Leah Rampy

Care More Be Better | Leah Rampy | Climate ChaosAfter giving numerous presentations on the dangers of impending climate change, Leah Rampy became convinced that something was missing from the conversations. With experience as a teacher, professor, corporate and nonprofit executive, and leadership consultant, she began a decades-long journey to understand what lies beneath our unwillingness to change our interactions with the natural world. Her growing commitment to reweaving soul and Earth has been informed by leading over a dozen pilgrimages and many more retreats, extensive reading and research, her contemplative practice, and the wisdom of the living world. Leah lives in a cohousing community in Shepherdstown, WV, with her husband David. They have two adult children.

 

Guest LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/leahrampy/

Guest Website: http://www.leahrampy.com

Guest Social: https://www.instagram.com/leahrampy/
https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=61553196486975

 

Show Notes: 

00:00 – Introduction

02:05 – Co-housing community

03:28 – Writing Earth and Soul

07:19 – Struggling with climate chaos

12:23 – Moving forward along with the negatives

15:03 – Anti-consumerism

24:27 – The tradition of the seventh fire

32:53 – A story of sparrows

37:27 – Non-destructible solutions

40:43 – Lessons from trees

43:13 – Closing Words

 

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Reconnecting Earth And Soul Amid Climate Chaos With Leah Rampy

We’re going to delve into the topic of reconnecting with Earth and soul amidst the climate heating and the climate chaos that is becoming our norm. Joining me on this journey is Leah Rampy, author of the new book Earth and Soul: Reconnecting Amid Climate Chaos. Leah is a teacher, professor, corporate and nonprofit executive, and leadership consultant.

Care More Be Better | Leah Rampy | Climate Chaos
For ‘Earth & Soul’ book cover: Earth & Soul: Reconnecting Amid Climate Chaos by Leah Rampy

Her growing commitment to reweaving the soul and Earth has been informed by leading pilgrimages, retreats, and extensive reading and research. She lives in a co-housing community in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, with her husband David. They have two adult children. I’m thrilled to have her here. Leah, welcome to the show.

Thank you, Corinna. I’m happy to be here with you.

I want to begin with that last part of your bio. Tell me about this co-housing community that you call home.

The physical presence of this co-housing community has been here for several years. Co-housing means that we have an intentional community. We planned and made our decisions together. We put in our sweat equity to make it work. We have people who are doing community gardening and others who are taking care of our trails through our conservation area and cooking meals once a week. There are all sorts of ways in which we collaborate and cooperate around the principle of community, Earth care, and being good to our community at large.

This won’t have been the first time we featured a guest who lived in a community like that. It’s nice to see more happening along those lines, coast to coast. The other one we featured was in Colorado. I’m forgetting the author’s name now, but he wrote a work of eco-fiction. I’ll figure it out before this show is up, and I’ll be sure to share it with everybody because it was an interesting read. It was called Tickling the Bear. We are here to talk about your book, Earth and Soul, and I wanted to start by learning what inspired you to write and release it and who you had in mind when you were crafting this incredible book.

The simple answer to what inspired me to write a book is that this is the conversation I wanted to be in. The way in which we live in these incredibly challenging edge times is important. I don’t think we have a lot of guideposts for how we live amid the chaos, the climate craziness, and the loss of biodiversity and ecosystems. It wasn’t cutting it for me to go around and talk about climate change. It wasn’t as inspiring as I wanted for people to feel like they knew how to make the change.

I started with the idea of the people on retreats I’ve led who were pondering this and wanting to reconnect. I thought about people who are working hard in the environmental area like you and many of the people you’ve had on the show and yet who are feeling that eco grief, loss, and frustration that things don’t move as quickly and smoothly as they know is needed for us to make a huge difference that we’re trying to make. They came into my sites. I thought about young people. Many of them are heartsick about the state of our world and what those of us who are my age are leaving to them. Those were the audience members I had in mind, but it could be anybody who cares about what’s happening in the world.

[bctt tweet=”Many people are working so hard in the environmental area despite feeling that eco-grief that things don’t move as quickly and smoothly as they know is needed to make a huge difference in the world.” username=””]

Many of the books in this space are well-intentioned. Nobody comes into this space to write a book about the Earth, the climate crisis, and the battles that we’re all facing and trying to enable us to feel like we have a semblance of control or can do some good in the face of what can seem insurmountable challenges. A few of them are well-written. I want to say that because it makes it easy to read and a joy. I was telling you as we started this. In the first eleven pages, I found a new term or something I had not heard before, which doesn’t happen every day. It’s the Wood Wide Web.

I wish I’d coined that. That would be lovely if I had invented that. Nature Magazine did this when they were writing about the wonderful scientist Suzanne Simard, who was cracking the code on what was going on in the underground fungal network and the incredible ways trees communicated with each other and exchanged nutrients and water.

I have the advanced reader copy. The page number may have changed, but we’re talking about page 19 here. I was interested in this story. Perhaps this inspired me to eat some more mushrooms. I had some lion’s mane and prep for this interview, but you talk about the fact that you’d see some forests where the trees that are leafy and get a lot of sun in the summer might be crowding out some of those evergreens.

The evergreens are getting carbon to the conifers via this mycelium network or the mushroom network underground. Those evergreens and conifers produce more carbon during the winter because they’re evergreen, and the exchange happens. They’re feeding the carbon to the trees that don’t have any leaves and are deciduous.

That’s why the term was called Wood Wide Web, which is unbearably cute. This is something where I learned something new in the first twenty pages, and it’s fun to read. That will keep me turning the pages and engaged in reading, even as I’m hearing some of these stories that frankly help me to navel gaze because I was like, “Somebody else is feeling this way.” I’m not alone here feeling completely out of sorts when it comes to the fact that I have atmospheric rivers now hitting the Central Coast of California every year.

My home office flooded three times in the past several years. I had to undertake some massive construction projects at home to solve that. 2024 was a test, and so far, we’re good, but that’s $30,000 that I luckily had, and many people don’t. It feels like we are struggling to stand still in some cases. I’d love for you to talk about that and perhaps some of the stories you confront during these pages.

It’s one of the reasons that I’m not particularly fond of the word sustainability. I know it can be used well-intentioned and in an appropriate way. Sometimes, we use it as a way of saying, “If I put solar panels on my roof, that will be enough, and I won’t have to change anything else.” I have solar panels on my roof. They’re important. I also don’t think they’re sufficient, and they keep us sustainable in terms of the way we are now living.

If we have not faced the kinds of things that you are talking about, the atmospheric rivers, the derechos, and the firebombs, the terms are going on and on, and scientists are running out of interesting ways to describe the unprecedented weather we’re facing. If we haven’t confronted that, we are in a privileged and lucky position. Both because perhaps of our economic status or the color of our skin, we are able to live in a place that is less prone to rising tides or wildfires, but not necessarily. Luck may play a big part in that.

My intention in the storytelling is to invite people to fall in love with the living world. I tell stories about trees, birds, beavers, plants, and animals because there’s incredible awe and wonder in the story of everything from soil to wind and rain and the beauty in the living world. I’m inviting us to be awestruck by the genius, the wisdom, and the amazing beauty of this world we live in.

I am not the first to say, “If we don’t love it, we won’t work with it.” I’m not going to say we won’t work to save it because that puts us in like, “It’s our central role.” It’s a human-centric way of looking at it. I want us to think about how we collaborate with the living world, draw on her wisdom, and align hours with it. We can co-create a more vibrant future.

I’m also telling stories of people. I’m telling a lot of my own stories in there. In many ways, it’s a vulnerable book for me. Somebody asked me if it was hard to write, and I said, “It’s not hard to write the stories about myself. It’s hard to imagine you reading them.” The intention in weaving those stories is to say, “We’re all in this.” The reason I’m showing some of my vulnerabilities is I want you to be okay saying, “I didn’t know that. I’ve made mistakes. I want to learn.”

I love the idea of co-creating that future. That is the ethos of this show. We’re inviting people to care more so we can create a better world. It can feel a lot like, “I’m one person. What effect can I have? Did I create this problem?” I’m sitting here as someone in my later 40s looking at a generation who is pointing up the ladder at past generations to say, “It’s you guys.” I’m sitting here thinking for some moments, “I’ve done everything right and everything I could to ensure that I didn’t leave such a huge footprint behind.”

Modern living puts us in such a capacity where it’s impossible to live without leaving a footprint. There’s a tremendous amount of blame that’s being tossed around. The pain of understanding that regardless, when you draw breath, you are part of it. My underlying question for you, and it’s one I often think through, is, how can we head forward with some faith that our actions can have a positive effect as opposed to a negative one for every breath we draw?

I have great empathy for that. It is easy for us to feel that it’s hopeless. When we do, we tend to numb ourselves to the pain, look away, and pretend it doesn’t exist, or go on about our business because who wants to reflect on the depth and breadth of these challenges we’re facing? What I’m arguing is to make two points here.

One is that facing the pain is important. Allowing our hearts to break open allows them to hold more, and not simply more pain, but also more joy, beauty, awe, and wonder. We can’t numb one part of ourselves and pick up the good emotions, hold them near and dear, and pretend that the rest doesn’t exist. I don’t think our bodies work that way. To be fully alive and fully embracing this world, we’re going to have to bear witness to what’s being lost.

We can connect this conversation to a discussion about an anti-consumerist movement because as you are in a co-living space, you’re also in a way supporting this move from what is the conventional American wisdom of how we live, where it’s like two and a half people, a dog and a house with four walls and separated from everybody with your living spaces and your outdoor yards. People live in apartments next to each other but don’t ever even say hi when they come out of the door. It’s a different way of living.

I have featured on this show a guest at one time, Stephanie Seferian, who has a podcast called Sustainable Minimalists. She shared with me on this show that sustainability and minimalism aren’t necessarily part of it, and you’re not always at the center of them in that Venn diagram. There are parts of each of these movements that can be separated, which I agree. We are living in such a world where the engine of consumerism is what drives employment, our economic system, what job you have, what products you take, and what your status is.

All of that is interwoven in how we live. We have to break apart our societal constructs and work to rebuild them into something different to build a future that can regenerate, connected to Earth, and move us from the climate chaos that we live in now, where there’s a new term every week, from the bomb cyclone that hit Capitola and put all of the towns underwater. That was recent in history here in the Central Coast of California to the atmospheric rivers that are now 11 or 13 in 2023 in the Central Coast of California.

I’ll see as many again in 2024 when we get all of the water at once, dumping out of the sky so much that there’s nowhere for it to go. That’s why we’re seeing things like flooding in places that are on hills. I’m on a hill. The low point of my home flooded because the water had nowhere to go. It was coming fast. What will water do? It finds its way down as quickly as possible. This is one part commentary, but I’m hoping you can help unveil what you think that unmaking and remaking can look like.

Let me say that I wish that could happen quickly. I’m making and remaking. That is such an incredible change that I suspect it’s going to happen over many lifetimes. In my lifetime, what I’m hoping for is that I can begin to make some headway toward that vision of a future world that is about living in a way that everyone and every being can thrive. Robin Wall Kimmerer used the term mutual thriving, and that’s become a favorite of mine. How can we live in a way that is a goal that we see as important?

It can be discouraging we can’t do it all. This is the sole part of the conversation. Each of us has a journey to understand what our gift to this world is. What is the essence of who we are when we are at our truest self and our best self? What is the gift we have to offer out of that space? I can identify with anybody who wants to run around doing everything they can until they’re exhausted. I’m in that space. I can follow there easily by signing every petition that comes along, writing everybody in the government who could make a change, and lobbying for the stats and the others that are important.

[bctt tweet=”Each person has a journey to understand their gift to the world. You must know the essence of who you are at your best self.” username=””]

It’s not that there’s anything wrong with that. It’s who I am, and the biggest gifts that I have are part of my conversation. What is my gift? It is about helping people understand those soil connections. It’s about planting my own garden and encouraging others to do it. I’m the one who’s standing in front of the trees that are about to be cut down or climbing them like Julia Butterfly Hills many years ago.

Your gift is bringing people to the conversation in this show. We have to stop beating ourselves up that we are not doing everything. We are planting seeds and creating stepping stones to a better future. We don’t know what that future can look like. For me, that’s where hope comes from. Hope is not this gift that comes out of a particular incident. It is a sense that the living world works in ways we can never understand far beyond our comprehension. It has agency and wisdom. If we can begin to live alongside and live in that space, bringing the best of who we are to that, we hope to create some of those seeds for the future and days far beyond our lifetime.

[bctt tweet=”The living works in ways we can never understand. If we can begin alongside and into that space, we can create the seeds for the future in the days far beyond our lifetime.” username=””]

Thank you for bringing up Julia Butterfly Hill. I have always admired her tenacity to be on top of that redwood for as long as she was to stand with it and say, “Knock this tree.” It’s to draw attention to the problem of deforestation with old-growth redwoods and to make it real for people who hadn’t thought of it before. She’s an incredible example of an advocate who finally had enough when it came to one thing.

Each of us has to pick our one thing in a way. I’m likely to run around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to solve all these problems. I focus on trying to reduce waste, reduce consumption, and buy used, which means sometimes, my kids want a new toy, and they’re getting something that I found on the marketplace in my local area. I picked up for a fraction of what it would’ve cost new. I’m not putting new plastic into the crazy environment that we live in.

This is perhaps something that will inspire someone. I realized that I love white clothing, but I’m terrible as a coffee drinker. All of my white clothing is stained. I was looking at a few shirts that had gotten dingy and had many spills, or the bleach wasn’t successful in getting the stain out. I was like, “I could dye this.” I purchased some black dye and dyed these items of clothing. I was like, “I’ll wear this again if it’s black.” I know that clothing isn’t going to end up in landfill for a while longer.

Part of the reason I chose to do that is I don’t like the idea of something that is otherwise usable sitting in the trash. I could have taken it to Goodwill or some other donation spot, but it would’ve been thrown away because it’s stained. Things that are stained or have holes in them don’t get resold or reused. I am now making this decision to head forward to say, “I repair my kids’ clothes.” They’re mostly in cotton. When something gets old and unusable, they turn it into waxed cloth to use as a seal on Tupperware. That’s easy to do. All you have to do is cut it into squares, put it in a glass pan with some wax on top of it, and put it in the oven at about 300 degrees, and it all melts together.

Thank you for that. I did not know that.

It doesn’t have to be cotton. It could be synthetic materials, but I prefer to use cotton for this thing. You can get soy-based wax or beeswax. It doesn’t matter. The beeswax holds up better. You can wax your fabrics and reuse them for however much longer. This reduces our waste. If you’re using something like beeswax and cotton, that can be composted.

I’m not zero waste. I have this aspiration of getting there. It’s unrealistic for me to be at that point with my two young boys at home. I’ve also met people who have children and are zero waste. I look at them fondly and say, “How’d you do that? Each of us finds our journey. I would love for you to take one of the stories that you tell in your book and share it with us. People get a better idea of a story that they can expect to read.

Can I say something about what you said first?

Yes.

It’s about the work that you’re doing because that’s impressive. I want to note that Robin Wall Kimmerer, in her fabulous book Braiding Sweetgrass. She’s such an important teacher for us. She talks about the tradition of the seventh fire. How do we move forward into a new and more vibrant world? The wisdom of the elders is that before we can go forward, we must go back along the trail and pick up some of the valuable things that were left behind.

When you are doing things like what you explained, the idea of reusing it sends me thinking about my parents, who grew up in the depression, and that was what you did. We talk about this sometimes in our community. The idea of preserving food is stepping back along that trail and saying, “What was good that we left behind somewhere?” We got sold this bill of goods about how women should be living lives of more leisure, this impression that doing things from scratch or using and reusing. There’s a whole host of Madison Avenue advertising that took us into a world that was about being consumable and using the resources of the living world.

I want to make a bridge to that comment before we move into you sharing a story from your book. I take this seriously. It was endemic in me as a little girl growing up. My mother read me this book by McCloskey called Blueberries For Sal. That story is one where Mama is taking her young daughter onto this blueberry hill to forage for blueberries to can them for the winter. That’s the whole purpose of the story. They come across bears that are also foraging and eating the blueberries to store as fab for the winter. It is such a beautiful, simple, award-winning book that I kept with me and in my mind and heart for years. It’s something that I’ve read to my children.

To further this connection with the color blue, there was Tomie dePaola’s The Legend of the Bluebonnet. It had to do with sacrifice. The thing that this young tribeswoman chose to do was to sacrifice her favorite thing. The rains could come, and the bluebonnets could bloom. Our culture has lost connection with the idea of sacrifice. It’s something that I’m working to bring back into the vernacular with my kids because the world of immediate gratification doesn’t breed appreciation. Appreciation is something that breeds happiness. We know that the spirit of thankfulness brings us forward into actual enjoyment.

I have felt for some time that this rapidity with which we lead our culture, this disposable nature of things, and the fact that we’re cycled through for this immediate gratification moment in our daily lives is part and parcel of why we’re stressed. Our attention and focus aren’t there. Our gratification, personal satisfaction, and moods are connected to the how or the way we’re living.

I take it as a practice now with my children, who are 6 and 9, to build in these moments and teach them to moderate to say, “Our blueberries that we got at the store, we didn’t move through them quickly enough.” We should go ahead and make them into a preserve. Show them how to do that. They don’t end up in the compost pile, and they can be consumed.

When I go on my walks in the springtime, I collect pine cones that are green. I’ve learned to make Mugolio, which is a syrup that you make with pine cones and brown sugar. It’s delectable and fun. Because I make pancakes and crepes from scratch at home, the kids get to drizzle a tiny bit of this on because it’s piney and potent but also delicious. It gets them to consume less sugar while they’re getting a little treat at the same time and be connected to the woods that surround our home.

I feel like these moments and things I do are instilling in my kids an appreciation for the natural world and where food comes from, and reading books like The Legend of the Bluebonnet by Tomie dePaola or Blueberries For Sal by Robert McCloskey. These things are carried through and will live on in the next generation. I see that as my responsibility as a parent.

I want to honor that, Corinna. It warms my heart to think of you creating this way of interacting with your children that gives them a broader view of the world than more toys. I don’t know if you remember reading in one of the parts the statistic that more children in the UK are injured or sent to the hospital these days because they’ve fallen out of bed than those who’ve fallen out of trees.

[bctt tweet=”Statistics say that more children in the UK are injured and sent to the hospitals due to falling out of their beds than those who have fallen out of trees.” username=””]

Isn’t that the truth of it?

It breaks my heart. In some respects, you think that’s funny, but it’s not because not all children have the experience that your children have. Understanding there’s a relationship with this living world. It does feed us. It’s easy to lose track of where your food comes from. I honor what you’re doing. Thank you.

We’re going to work on building a tree house on our property. This is another page from my deck when I talk about preservation. I have oak trees on my property. Oak trees are likely to split when we have extreme weather, especially the extreme weather we’re having. That can be devastating to the ecosystem. It can kill the tree. You can remove a lot of shade, which is also creating these microclimates underneath their bows.

I worked with an arborist to cable our oak tree. It’s less likely to split. Our trees are surviving and thriving. They seem to be doing fine. I have this dream of building that tree house to engage my kids in the undeveloped part of our land more and offer them that moment of independence that they aren’t as likely to get in this world of helicopter parenting. I work hard not to be that helicopter parent because if one of my children falls out of a tree and breaks an arm, that’s an experience and a story. If they tumble out of bed and break something, it means they’re not getting outside and exercising their bodies enough. They’ve got brittle bones as a result.

We’d prefer nobody broke anything. I love that your children are out there. That makes me feel good. It gives me warm feelings about that. You asked for a story. I did. Would you like to read a story or tell the story from the book?

Why don’t you tell it?

There are many I could tell, but one that I tell about is a story about sparrows. This is in China in the ‘50s, at a time when food was scarce and people were hungry. Government officials were concerned because they saw the sparrows that were in the field eating the grain. The response was, “We need to eliminate the sparrows. If we eliminate the sparrows, there will be more grain for the people.” Government officials encouraged people to kill sparrows. That is what they did. It was a whole campaign to eliminate sparrows, pull fledglings out of their nest, shoot the sparrows as they saw them, and break the eggs.

There’s a story of a group of sparrows who took refuge in the Polish embassy, and a band of individuals stood outside banging pots and pans until the sparrows were exhausted. They simply fell dead from the trees. You might think the people had more food, but that was not what happened. There was a whole invasion of locusts that came in, settled in the grain fields, and decimated the crops.

One of the ways in which locusts are controlled is they’re eaten by sparrows. Because all the sparrows had been eliminated, it led to a greater loss of crops and greater hunger. Many people died. The Chinese government was forced to bring in new sparrows from the Soviet Union to replace the ones that they had destroyed to try to rebalance the ecosystem.

The point I make in this story is not like, “Aren’t we good? Aren’t we smart? Shouldn’t I feel good that I’ve never killed off a bunch of sparrows?” When we don’t take the time to understand the living world around us, no matter how good our intentions are, we can easily make things much worse. I go on to give some personal stories of where I have done that.

You could take a simple one of how, for years, we plowed our garden, tilted or ducked it up in some way because we didn’t realize all of that whole fungal network and vibrant ecosystem of all sorts of millions, everything from bacteria to small critters to earthworms were being killed. They were the source of rich soil that would nourish our plants and increase their nutritional value. When we jump in with the sense that we know best and should fix what’s wrong in the world, we have to be careful to pause to listen and learn. It sounds corny, but ask the world, whatever that part of the world is, “What do you need?” Before we leap in with our great wisdom.

It’s a sad story to think about all of those birds being killed. They’re versions of such sad stories that are happening all the time, whether dredging swamps for parking lots, cutting down trees for toilet paper, or in the Amazon so that we can have more cattle grazing there and satisfy our need for cheap beef. We could go on and on about examples where there may be a reason that sounds good to the individuals who are taking the actions, but the ramifications are painful.

I have a great example of what we could do that could change everything. Our scientists are hard at work trying to figure out how to reverse global warming. How do we get the space where this global heating problem starts to cool down? We have less extreme weather. We can survive and thrive. One of them is to throw up particulate matter into the sky. The sky reflects more of the light. Therefore, we can cool down a bit.

The ramifications of this, number one, is that the sky would no longer be blue. It would rather be white. We can only imagine what other effects that could have. We could even get to a space, or there was simply too much of it. The global cooling was so vast that we ended up being in something like a nuclear winter. That was the reason for the mass extinction of dinosaurs about 64 million years ago.

We could think that we’ve created the perfect solution and only have messed up the fragile systems that we’re working with even more. We need to look at the sound systems that nature provides to lean into those sound systems, like photosynthesis and the ability of carbon to be sequestered in our soils, and focus on those particular things that we know support natural ecosystem rebounding. That supports biodiversity. That biodiversity supports a balance because that’s the thing that life is always striving for. Life is striving for a balance.

There’s some sense that we keep hearing that we’re going to innovate our way out of this, and no one has figured out how to begin to approach the incredible effectiveness and wisdom of a tree.

I might have to innovate my way out of the next series of power outages here in my home, but that’s slapping a Band-Aid on a problem. That’s not solving the problem. You’re right to say it’s probably going to take us generations to fix this problem because it took us many generations to get to where we are. The awakening that is happening now for people who are becoming aware, who are striving to become more informed, and who are thinking about consumerism as something that we shouldn’t necessarily be marching toward blindly are people like us who are going to push for that and help us reach a better future so that our grandchildren can enjoy it.

I want to add that sometimes, consumerism is a part of dulling ourselves. It’s a way we try to feel better because we’re lonely. That may be lonely for other human companionship, but we’re also lonely for our connection to the world around us.

Whenever I’m feeling overwhelmed, alone, or lonely, a hike into the woods changes everything in my mindset. I’m spending some time around nature. I call her my friend Maple. This is an interesting old tree that is nearly falling down. The entire forest is supported through their mycelium networks. She’s leaning far to one side. Her trunk is covered in all sorts of beautiful mosses. Somebody has taken the trouble to cable her the way I have cabled my oak trees. I’m like, “They don’t want her to fall either.” It’s interesting because that’s an expensive fix. Somebody had to decide that they wanted to do that.

Every time we have a big storm, I walk through and show my gratitude for this tree and this little spot of the woods at the base of a private drive. I walk up to the tree, put my hand on it, look up at all of them, and say, “Thank you.” This is part of my natural world. They contribute to the air that I breathe in a real present sense every day. It’s in my neighborhood. That helps me feel more connected. The practice of gratitude is something that is scientifically proven to help people be more happy.

We can’t discount that we’re making the trees feel happier. I think about the trees. They’re exchanging their aerosols to warn when there are insects coming. I imagine when you go out, and you’re this loving kindness, there’s a different sense that the trees are taking in than if someone is a threat to them. I don’t think we should discount them because they can’t speak our language, and there’s no knowledge of our intention. We’re breathing in whatever they’re admitting.

I am going to gladly post this book along with the links to where they can find out more about you, including your website, which is LeahRampy.com. Do you have any actions that you would like to inspire people to take or parting words that you’d like to share?

Action is what’s near and dear to your heart. It’s the freedom not to feel that you have to do everything. It’s to listen deeply for what your invitation is, embrace that as full-heartedly as you possibly can, and be okay with trusting that if we are all doing that, and there is a weaving together of our actions, Earth will support and sustain us.

[bctt tweet=”The action needed by the world is what’s near and dear to your heart. It is that freedom to not feel that you have to do everything.” username=””]

I have all these specific things that I love, like local food, growing our own gardens and changing our lawns to be vibrant food systems for local critters who need it. Those are things that speak to me. I’m always wanting to encourage people to do that, but I want people to do what they’re called to do. That’s the invitation.

Listen to yourself, commune with nature, figure out what it is that you’re called to do, and make that your personal mission to respect Earth with heart and soul. Thank you for writing this amazing book. I love that. I’m going to keep reading it. I have not finished it yet. I still have some joy in completing its work. I encourage you to keep going with this message. I’ll gladly make any introductions to help you get this out there because it’s eloquent, beautiful, and inspiring all in one.

A deep bow of gratitude to you for all that you’re doing, for bringing voices to this world, for your own personal commitment to social impact and regeneration, and for what you’re doing with your children. Thank you.

I want to do better, but isn’t that the curse of parenthood? We always want to do better. We could be doing better, but we try.

Thank you.

Thank you.

I have enjoyed our conversation with Leah Rampy. As always, I will share all the ways that you connect with Leah on her social channels as well as where you can find this book. I will put it up in my Amazon shop. You can find it easily. Anytime that people purchase from my Amazon shop, a small portion, I’m talking a few pennies, go to support the show.

A lot of people shop on Amazon. It might not be the Earth-friendliest way to go. I always support people going to their local bookstores and asking for books. Have them order the book for you because that will help more people discover the book. If you request a book at your local bookstore, that means that the store will choose to stock it in inventory, put it on a nice little new release display, and get more exposure for that author’s important work. I’m going to do that in my local bookshop, Bookshop Santa Cruz. I hope some of you will join me and make that same effort.

As we close the show, I want to invite everyone here to share their thoughts with me. What is it that you are doing? What is the one thing that you’re going to champion? Have you figured it out yet? If you’re still in the process, I’d love for you to share that. You could go ahead and share a social post or tag this episode. You can send me an email to Hello@CareMoreBeBetter.com. I’m also always available on Instagram, and I’ve even been known to post a thing or two on TikTok.

If you enjoyed this episode, I hope that you’ll go ahead and leave us a five-star rating or review. If you didn’t like the show, tell me what you didn’t like. The feedback is imperative. I want to keep serving all of you with great content and great guests. Thank you, readers, now and always, for being a part of this show and this community because together, we can do so much more. We can care more. We can be better. We can even connect deeply with Earth, discover our true purpose, and create a better world together. Thank you.

 

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